Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

EXCLUSIVE: Sturgeon tells staff to be ready for indyref2

Nicola Sturgeon has put the civil service on notice for a second Scottish independence referendum.
Nicola Sturgeon has put the civil service on notice for a second Scottish independence referendum.

Scottish civil servants have been warned the SNP could demand a second independence referendum within weeks.

Sources close to the top of the non-political arm of the Scottish Government say they have received notice Nicola Sturgeon is considering pushing for the Section 30 order required to make any constitutional vote legal, sooner rather than later.

The SNP administration last night confirmed the option of another plebiscite was “very much on the table,” although it is understood no explicit work has been handed out to staff.

Conservative constitution spokesman Adam Tomkins said: “The people of Scotland don’t want another independence referendum. It really is as simple as that.

“The decision was made decisively in 2014 and doesn’t need to be revisited.
“Nicola Sturgeon should be true to her own word and acknowledge that the polls don’t support a separation re-run.”

The latest twist comes after The Courier revealed Downing Street is preparing for Ms Sturgeon to request a second referendum is held in August 2018.

Theresa May’s team is “war gaming” as speculation intensifies that the SNP leader will announce her intention to return to the polls at her party’s conference next month.

Ms Sturgeon has said another referendum is increasingly likely in the wake of the Brexit vote, but she would need UK Government permission for a second legally-binding vote.

EXCLUSIVE: UK Government preparing for Nicola Sturgeon to demand indyref2 in August 2018

It is understood Ms Sturgeon first spoke to civil servants in the aftermath of Theresa May’s Lancaster House speech, where she made clear the UK would not be a member of the single market post Brexit, with one senior figure saying they received the news ahead of the First Minister and Prime Minister’s meeting in Cardiff last Monday.

Asked about The Courier’s story following Prime Minister’s Questions yesterday, the PM’s spokesman said: “We don’t believe there should be a second referendum.

“There was a referendum in 2014. It was decisive, clear and legal. Both sides agreed they would abide by the result.”

A senior Labour insider said: “Voters will despair to hear that our two nationalist governments are preparing the groundwork for a second independence referendum.”

A Scottish Government source said: “We remain engaged in a serious effort to protect Scotland’s place in the single market through the compromise
proposals we have put on the table.

“It is up to the UK Government to match that compromise.

“But we have made clear an
independence referendum is very much on the table as an option if it becomes clear it is the best or only way to protect our vital national interests.”

Already a subscriber? Sign in



More from The Courier Scottish politics team

More from The Courier