Glasgow University Scottish Nationalist Association

The Glasgow University Scottish Nationalist Association (GUSNA) is a student organisation formed in 1927 at the University of Glasgow which supports Scottish independence.

Glasgow University
Scottish Nationalist Association
Abby Hastings
Samantha Grace
Past President
Justine McCluskey
AffiliationsSNP Students


GUSNA is important historically as it predated many pro-independence organisations including the Scottish National Party itself. It is the forerunner of the National Party of Scotland (NPS) which is itself a forerunner of the modern Scottish National Party.[1] One of the three founding members of GUSNA was John MacCormick who had previously been involved in the Glasgow University Labour Club.[2]

GUSNA was thrown into prominence in the early 1950s when a group of its members (including Ian Hamilton who would later become a well known Queen's Counsel) took the Stone of Destiny from Westminster Abbey on Christmas Day 1950. This caused a huge scandal among the British establishment and it was not until April 1951 that the stone was found by the authorities.[3][4][5]

GUSNA has, almost since its inception, tried to play an active part in the life of Glasgow University with its members regularly being involved in the Students' Representative Council as well as regularly nominating candidates for the election of the Rectorship of the university. Notable GUSNA Rectorial candidates of the past have included Robert Cunninghame-Graham and John MacCormick (who with Ian Hamilton as his campaign manager was successful in being elected). More recent candidates have been Ian Hamilton, Alasdair Gray and Alan Bissett; with the most recent being Aamer Anwar, who was elected in 2017. GUSNA is affiliated to SNP Students, the student wing of the Scottish National Party, and played a leading role in its formation in the 1960s.

Prominent former members of GUSNA have included Winnie Ewing, Nicola Sturgeon MSP and Neil MacCormick (son of John MacCormick).[6] The current president is Abby Hastings.

Executive committee

The members of the 2019-20 executive committee are:[7]

  • President: Abby Hastings
  • Vice President: Chloe Imrie
  • Secretary: Samantha Grace
  • Treasurer: Nico Matrecano
  • Organiser: Tom Coyle
  • Equalities Officer: Florian Niederseer
  • Past President: Justine McCluskey

Notable Members


  1. Archives Hub: Collection of material relating to the Scottish National Party Archived 20 July 2012 at
  2. TheGlasgowStory: John M. MacCormick
  3. "Stone of Destiny taken from Westminster Abbey". Education Scotland. Archived from the original on 31 July 2014. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  4. "Stealing of the Stone of Scone". National Library of Scotland. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  5. Craig, Olga (14 December 2008). "Ian Hamilton on Stone of Destiny". The Telegraph. London. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  6. Media Releases - University of Aberdeen
  7. "People". Glasgow University Scottish Nationalist Association. Glasgow University Scottish Nationalist Association. Retrieved 28 November 2018.