Scots ‘more positive’ about the future than rest of UK

Picture: JP
Picture: JP
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People in Scotland are more optimistic about the future than those in other parts of the United Kingdom, a new survey by the BBC has found.

More Scots believed that the country’s best prospects were in the future than in the past, by a margin of 36 per cent to 29 per cent, while in England, 49 per cent believed the country was better in the past and just 17 per cent said the best days of the country were in the future.

The corporation carried out surveys across Britain to gauge attitudes towards identity.

Experts analysed the data and believe that the greater optimism about the future in Scotland (and Wales, were optimism was also higher) is down to response from backers of independence.

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1,000 people were surveyed in Scotland, compared to over 20,000 people in England, finding that 84 per cent of Scottish respondents identifying as being ‘Very Strongly’ Scottish.

59 per cent of Scots surveyed felt British, but only 26 per cent said they were ‘very strongly’ British, far lower than the equivalent numbers in England and Wales.

Polling guru Prof Sir John Curtice told the BBC those with an optimistic view of Scotland’s future were “predominantly those who are supporters of independence”.

He said: “What seems to be the case in Scotland is that SNP supporters in particular, supporters of Scottish independence, are inclined to feel the best days are ahead.

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“They obviously believe that someday in the not too distant future Scotland might become an independent country, and therefore as a result that things might be better.

“You can see the same thing in Wales. Plaid Cymru supporters have much more tendency to be optimistic.

Prof Curtice added: “Conversely, south of the border it is older voters and those who voted to leave the European Union who say look, the better days are behind us.

“Evidently at least so far for them the prospect of Brexit has not proved sufficient to think that Britain is going to become great again.”