Scottish independence: Final countdown to independence vote

Scotland Decides

Go to the BBC's Scotland Decides page for analysis, background and explainers on the independence debate.

With Monday 9 June marking 100 days of campaigning left until the referendum on Scottish independence, campaigners on both sides of the debate have embarked on the final push.

But how has the campaign shaped up so far and what are we likely to see in the final weeks before the 18 September vote on Scotland's future?

Here's what's likely to come up:

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Positive v negative
Yes Scotland The Yes Scotland and Better Together campaigns are fighting for votes ahead of polling day
Better Together

Striking the right tone has been vital for the campaigns.

On one side, Yes Scotland says it has been making a positive case for independence through its "Yes declaration" based on Scotland's ability to unlock its full potential.

On the other, Better Together says it has taken a similar approach, with their "Best of both worlds" slogan to make the case for Scotland staying part of Britain.

But there's been another side to campaigning. Take, for example, Chancellor George Osborne's view - backed up by Labour and the Liberal Democrats, that an independent Scotland would be blocked from using the pound.

Similarly, Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond has partly made the case for a "Yes" vote being about ridding Scotland of Conservative government.

And his deputy, Nicola Sturgeon, has accused PM David Cameron of "struggling to locate that part of his anatomy" which would see him go head-to-head with Mr Salmond in a TV debate. (Ms Sturgeon's advisers assured me at the time she was referring to the prime ministers "guts". Or lack of)

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Claim and counterclaim
Banknotes Scotland's economic health has been a hot topic in the campaign

How much better off will people in Scotland be? Will public services be better or worse? What does Scotland need to be an international player?

These are all questions the two sides have sought to answer with a dazzling array of figures.

The Scottish government's most recent offering was the promise that everyone living in an independent Scotland would be £1,000 better off a year.

That very same day, The Treasury, in its own piece of analysis, said people in Scotland would get a "UK dividend" - worth £1,400 per person, per year - if they voted "No".

And not content with punting their own views, the two sides resorted to attacking each other for dodgy sums.

Mr Salmond said the Treasury's calculations had been "blown to smithereens" because they'd already been caught cooking the books, while Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander accused SNP ministers of offering voters a "bogus bonus" because their version hadn't taken all the factors into account.

Expect plenty more stats chat in the weeks ahead, as the campaigns continue to seek to put forward their economic arguments.

Independence: Scottish government view

Each person in Scotland


a year better off out of UK

  • Onshore tax receipts will be up £5bn by 2030

  • 14% increase in oil and gas production between 2013-18

  • Tax receipts currently 14% higher in Scotland than UK

Getty Images
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Independence: Treasury view

Each person in Scotland


a year better off in UK

  • 13% more tax needed to maintain independent Scotland public services, or...

  • 11% cut in public services needed to keep current tax levels

  • £1.5bn-£2.7bn estimated cost of restructuring Scotland's institutions

Getty Images
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Battleground issues
Man holding money The future of pensions has been a recurring theme

Much of the referendum campaign has focussed in on specific issues - and there's going to be a strong emphasis on that in the days, weeks and months to come.

The future of pensions and currency have emerged as key areas, added to which has been an on-going dispute over Scotland's future status in the European Union and organisations like Nato.

And, on oil, whose estimates do you believe?

Thoughts have also now turned to what might happen on 19 September.

Scotland's other pro-Union parties have now all offered voters the prospect of more Scottish Parliament powers, in the event of a "No" vote.

The prospect of a stronger Scotland within the UK has formed a key part of their argument, but the SNP government has questioned their ability to deliver and says the nation needs real independence.

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'Mibbes Aye, Mibbes Naw'
Voting booth Both sides of the campaign have been going after undecided voters

If you are an undecided voter, the campaign machines are coming your way.

Those who have yet to decide whether their "X" is going beside "Yes" or "No" are hugely influential because they're open to persuasion - and polling data for the last few months indicates "don't knows" make up anywhere between 12% and 29% of the electorate.

And then there's the battle for female voters, who, according to the Scottish Social Attitudes Survey, have historically been less keen on backing independence.

With women accounting for 52% of voters in Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon says winning the female vote means Yes Scotland will have "cracked" the referendum - but is that achievable?

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Head and heart
Statue Robert the Bruce won a famous victory during the wars of independence

The economy has been at the heart of the campaign for independence - but the so-called Braveheart argument still plays a role.

This year marks the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn, the 1314 clash which saw the English army defeated by the forces of King of Scots Robert the Bruce, during the wars of independence.

A large-scale re-enactment of the event in June may well stir a few feelings of Scottish Patriotism.

Supporters of the Union have also looked to history.

During a time which has seen big world war commemoration events, David Cameron used a conference speech to pay tribute to a Scottish ancestor, Captain John Geddes who died in battle in 1915, but showed "extraordinary heroism" in representing Britain standing together "when the chips were down".

And what might the two sides of the campaign make of the 2014 Commonwealth Games, being held this summer in Glasgow?

It is one of those international events in which Scotland competes in its own right.

Scotland's former first minister Lord McConnell called for a "referendum truce" during the event. His successor, Mr Salmond, said it was "nonsensical" to suggest politics would overshadow the event.

But if you're heading to any sporting events in Glasgow between the end of July and the start of August, expect to at least see a few Yes Scotland and Better Together flyers.

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Unknown unknowns
Barack Obama Barack Obama made an unexpected intervention in the debate over Scotland's future

As one-time US defence secretary Donald Rumsfeld once noted: "There are known knowns, there are things that we know that we know. We also know there are known unknowns, that is to say we know there are some things we do not know.

"But there are also unknown unknowns, the ones we don't know we don't know."

Sticking with US politics, President Barack Obama's intervention in Scotland's future definitely falls into the latter category.

And don't forget the equally unexpected declaration of the Scottish-born Labour MP for Leeds East, George Mudie, who said he would vote for Scottish independence if he was able to do so.

The referendum campaigns may well be planning every last second of their strategies, but not knowing who might be next to put their head above the parapet will keep them on their toes right up until polling day.

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Scotland Live

    Harry photobomb 11:07:

    Following the Queen's unexpected photobomb of the Aussie team last week, it seems Prince Harry wants a piece of the action too.

    Prince Harry photobomb

    The Prince gave a cheeky thumbs up to Glasgow 2014 after finding his way in to this Commonwealth Games Federation picture.

    Have you been photobombed by a royal? Or an athlete? Tweet us your pics using #ScotlandLive, or email them here.

    Highlights from day five 10:48:

    BBC Scotland's Andy Burke rounds up yesterday's Commonwealth Games highlights for the host nation.

    Libby Clegg

    His video features Libby Clegg, Laura Muir, Ross Murdoch, Joe Ham, lawn bowls, shooting and gymnastics.

    The germ-spreading handshake - your views 10:43: Via SMS

    Norrie: If folk would just wash their hands there would be no problems. What next? Ban kissing and rubbing noses!!

    Helen in Cumbernauld: Get a life, what about our exposure and handling of coins, money, keyboards, mobile phones and chopping boards in our kitchens? They probably contain more bacteria. Good hand washing and building immunity would b better.

    Jim Robb: This is getting silly. Wash your hands at the appropriate time and live a little!

    Wrestling action 10:33: Via Twitter BBC Sport Scotland

    tweets: Watch live wrestling featuring Scots Ross McFarlane, Brian Harper, and Donna and Fiona Robertson.

    Spectacular stunts 10:22:

    Stunt rider Danny MacAskill will perform some spectacular tricks as part of the BBC at the Quay entertainment festival from 11.00.

    Danny MacAskill

    If you're a classical music lover, the Royal Scottish National Orchestra will be playing scores from Hollywood movies such as ET, Superman and Jurassic Park at Glasgow Green between 14:00 and 15:00.

    There will also be a Prom concert featuring folk singer Rachel Sermanni from 18:30.

    Stop and search - your views 10:08: Via SMS

    H in Edinburgh: Just let police do their job. We can't do without them. If you have nothing to hide then nothing to fear.

    Al in Edinburgh: The new police state Police Scotland imposing Strathclyde policies on a one-fits-all basis is alienating the public.

    Mags: I have no problems with stop and search. It's just like CCTV, if you have nothing to hide then what's the problem? Some people talk about CCTV being an infringement on our rights but how many criminals, sex attackers etc have been caught on camera?

    Murder charge 09:55:

    Police Scotland say the attack on Edinburgh pensioner Eleanor Whitelaw in her Morningside home is now being treated as murder.

    Robert Buczek, 23, was initially charged with attempted murder and assault to severe injury and danger of life when he appeared at Edinburgh Sheriff Court on Monday.

    Mrs Whitelaw, 85, was taken to hospital two weeks ago, but it was announced earlier this morning that she had died.

    A lasting legacy? 09:41:

    Last week we asked you to help us track down pupils from Glasgow's St Mungo's Academy in Bridgeton, who spoke to the BBC in 2007, just minutes before the city found out its bid to host the Commonwealth Games had been successful.

    With your help we found them.

    Sean Bell and Hayley Mitchell

    They were the east end's new generation, who could be in line to benefit from promises of jobs, homes and new opportunities - if the Games came to Glasgow.

    So, did the Games deliver? Find out here.

    Pensioner found injured dies 09:30:

    An 85-year-old woman who was found seriously injured in her Edinburgh home has died.

    Eleanor Whitelaw was taken to hospital two weeks ago after being found in her Morningside home.

    The morningside home of Eleanor Whitelaw

    Robert Buczek, 23, was charged with attempted murder and assault to severe injury and danger of life when he appeared at Edinburgh Sheriff Court on Monday.

    He made no plea or declaration and was remanded in custody.

    Legia Warsaw 'step up' 09:25:

    Celtic's assistant manager John Collins has told BBC Scotland Legia Warsaw will be a "step up" from KR Reykjavik.

    Speaking at Glasgow Airport as the team flew out to Poland for tomorrow night's Champions League qualifier, Collins said: "There's no doubt it's going to be a tough match.

    John Collins

    "We watched them last week in Dublin. Good team - they scored four goals so at this stage of the tournament you're not going to play against any mugs. There's no doubt it's a step up in quality from Reykjavik.

    "It's better to play them away from home first then get them back to Murrayfield. But we're going to have to play well - they're organised, they're quite quick and they score goals."

    Celtic's match tomorrow kicks off at 19:45, with the return leg in Edinburgh on 6 August.

    Morning Call 09:18: Louise White Presenter, Morning Call

    This morning we're taking your views on stop and search - does the system affect your trust in the police?

    We're also going to talking about curbing the spread of germs - is it time to end the handshake?

    Lines are open now. Call 0500 92 95 00, text 80295 or email

    You can listen live to the debate here.

    Newspaper review 09:14:

    Scotland's record-equalling haul of medals at Glasgow 2014 dominates the front pages on most of the country's newspapers this morning.

    Front pages 29 July
    Footie gossip 09:01:

    Away from the Games, Celtic look to add to the signing of Inge Berget with a Haitian midfielder, while Rangers fans are angry at an apparent secret plan to sell Murray Park.

    Murray Park

    Read all your Scottish football gossip here.

    More medal hopes 08:46:

    Shooting, athletics, swimming, cycling and gymnastics... could Scotland win one more medal to make it our best ever Commonwealth Games?

    Daniel Purvis in action at Glasgow 2014

    Find out what's on when today for Scots athletes.

    Gary and Libby 08:39:

    Scots gold medal winner Libby Clegg is currently chatting with Good Morning Scotland's Gary Robertson.

    Gary Robertson and Libby Clegg

    Listen live here.

    Golden moments 08:35:

    It has been a memorable week for Scotland with medals galore at the Commonwealth Games.

    Kimberley and Louise Renicks

    Re-live some of those special moments in our picture gallery.

    Cathkin Braes travel 08:24: Via Twitter Games Travel 2014

    tweets: Shuttles buses for #Cathkin Braes ticket holders will run from Cowcaddens Rd behind Buchanan Bus Station from 08:00.

    Driver killed in crash 08:24:

    A driver has been killed in a two-car road crash on the A87 at Druim nan Cleochd on the Isle of Skye.

    The collision took place at about 16:20 on Monday.

    Travel round-up 08:11:

    If you are coming to Glasgow by train, Central, Argyle Street, Queen Street, Exhibition Centre and Mount Florida stations are all going to be extremely busy.

    And don't forget it takes about 15 minutes - probably longer given the crowds - to walk to Hampden from the Battlefield area where the railway station is.

    You can also get to the athletics at Hampden by shuttle bus from Shield Road subway station and Buchanan Bus Station, or take the scheduled services 4, 5, 6 or 7.

    Cathkin Braes Country Park is hosting the mountain biking competition from this afternoon, with shuttle buses dropping off and picking up on the south-bound Carmunnock Road where one lane will be closed. Factor in about 40 minutes or so to get to the spectator plaza.

    Drivers on the M8, M77 and M74 should also expect very busy morning and afternoon peaks with J15 and J19 on the M8, the M8/M74 interchange and M74 at J1A expected to be particularly busy.

    08:06: Via Twitter BBC Breakfast

    tweets: Lord Smith of Kelvin tells us #glasgow2014 will arrange compensation for people who missed CWG events due to travel problems. Apply online.

    Anything you can do, I can do better 08:00:

    Yesterday on Scotland Live, we enjoyed a 41-shot rally in the table tennis tournament at Glasgow 2014 between Nigeria's Segun Toriola and Singapore's Ning Gao.

    The badminton stars went one better - well, 18 better in fact.

    Mixed team final between Malaysia and England in badminton at Glasgow 2014

    Enjoy this 59-shot rally at the mixed team final between Malaysia and England.

    Royal seal of approval 07:47:

    The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry were among the spectators enjoying the action in Glasgow yesterday.

    Prince Harry, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

    The Royal trio were spotted at various venues in the city including the Hydro, Tollcross Pool and the National Hockey Centre at Glasgow Green.

    Bring it on 07:37: Via Twitter Team Scotland

    tweets: 13 Gold. 8 Silver. 12 Bronze. Bring on Day 6! #GoScotland

    Medal table 07:32:

    Scotland are still in third place in the Commonwealth Games medal table following yesterday's successes.

    Australia lead the way, with England in second.

    Medal table, July 28

    Wales are now in 8th, with Northern Ireland (16th) and Isle of Man (17th) also tasting success.

    Last night at the Games 07:22: Graham Fraser BBC Scotland

    Last night, Libby Clegg experienced the Hampden roar with a gold medal in the T12 100m final.

    Her success meant Scotland has equalled its best total medal haul at any Commonwealth Games ever, with 33 medals.

    Libby Clegg wins gold at Glasgow 2014

    Earlier, Team Scotland set a new national record for Commonwealth gold medals following lawn bowls success for Alex Marshall and Paul Foster. That win in the men's pairs event took them to the 12-gold mark, surpassing the tally at Melbourne in 2006.

    So today could be a very special day for Team Scotland. Any more medal success, of any colour, for the men and women in blue and white will make Glasgow 2014 that extra bit special for everyone in the team.

    Coming up... 07:17: BBC Radio Scotland

    Following a fantastic night of athletics at Hampden, Scotland's gold-winning para sprinter Libby Clegg will be chatting with Gary Robertson on Good Morning Scotland just after 08:00.

    Libby, who is visually impaired, took the gold with guide runner Mikail Huggins in the T11/12 100m in 12.20 seconds.

    You can listen live here.

    Weather outlook 07:00: Christopher Blanchett BBC Weather presenter

    It'll be a cloudy start for most, with any early sunshine confined to the east coast. Through the morning this brighter weather fades as cloud rolls in from the west. There'll be some very light outbreaks of rain or drizzle initially for the spine of Scotland and further west - but most will have a dry and cloudy morning.

    Through the day it improves, brightening up with sunny spells developing across central and eastern Scotland, though always staying that bit more cloudy for western parts with showers on the west coast and through the Hebrides.

    A brisk westerly breeze adding to a fresher feel compared with yesterday. Highs of 18C in the west and 21C in the east under sunnier skies.

    For a full forecast go to the BBC Weather website.

    Latest updates
    Welcome 06:52: Marianne Taylor BBC Scotland news

    Good morning and welcome to BBC Scotland Live, your minute-by-minute guide to all the latest action and atmosphere from day six of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.

    We will, of course, also be bringing you the latest news, sport, weather and travel from across the country.

    Keep in touch with all your comments and pictures throughout the the day - you can tweet us using #ScotlandLive, email us here or text using 80295.



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