Although the headline figures from BMG’s latest poll for The Herald show that a clear majority of Britons are against Scottish independence (66%), readers might be more surprised to learn that a third were actually in favour (34%), particularly as this was a UK-wide poll and Scotland only accounts for around 8% of the total UK population. In fact 32% of the non-Scottish population (England, Wales and Northern Ireland) came out in favour Scottish Independence.
What’s more, pro-Scottish independence sentiment is even stronger among those in favour of Brexit, with more than four in ten Brexiteers (42%) in favour of Scotland leaving the UK. It is striking to think that the odds of support for Scottish independence are almost twice as likely among Leavers when compared to Remainers (Odds Ratio = 1.84).
Readers can interrogate the data for themselves by toggling with the chart below.
Unsurprisingly, the vast majority of SNP supporters are in favour of Scottish independence, but there is also a large dose of euroscepticism in the party. Our previous Scottish poll for The Herald showed that around 40% of SNP supporters were actually in favour of Brexit – meaning that a significant minority of those Brexiteers in favour of Scottish independence will actually be SNP voters.
Though the politics of those who think Scotland should be independent is varied, and they come from all parts of the UK, they are disproportionately SNP and UKIP supporters, and are less likely to vote Conservative or Labour. When compared to the major parties (excl. SNP), Ukippers are almost two and a half times more likely to support Scottish independence (Odds Ratio = 2.32).
Intriguingly ,the poll also shows that UK-wide Scottish independence supporters tend to be people who are much more interested in politics than the general public, they are slightly more left-wing, they are more likely to consider asylum and immigration as key concerns and are substantially more distrustful of government.
Data tables containing a full breakdown of the results can be found here.
For further details about this poll, and any other results from our polling series, please feel free to get in touch by email or phone.
0121 333 6006
Dr Michael Turner – Research Director – BMG Research