FORMER Liberal Democrat leader Charles Kennedy has become the latest politician to accuse the Tories of attempting to stoke up English nationalism.


The Ross, Skye and Lochaber candidate, campaigning alongside Jo Swinson in the East Dunbartonshire constituency she won in 2005 and retained in 2010, claimed the LibDems would not put the unity of the UK at risk.

The party, polling at just four per cent across Scotland, is focussing relentlessly on hanging on to the 11 constituencies north of the Border it won in 2010. Senior LibDem figures have explicitly called for Labour and Conservative voters to support their candidates in the seats in a bid to keep the SNP out.

Mr Kennedy said: "Just months after a clear referendum decision to keep the UK together it is alarming that two parties seem to be doing their best to reopen the issue.

"The SNP have gone back on their commitment that there would not be another referendum for a lifetime. And the Conservatives are sowing division by stoking up English nationalism."

Meanwhile, the SNP called for the UK Government to introduce a new target to build 100,000 affordable homes a year. Nicola Sturgeon said boosting investment in affordable housing across the UK could create up to 6,500 jobs in Scotland.

The First Minister said SNP MPs at Westminster would also call for Scotland to be prioritised as part of the HS2 high-speed rail project and press for more superfast broadband and 4G services north of the border.

Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson spent yesterday at a nursery in Crieff, alongside her education spokeswoman, Liz Smith, highlighting childcare.

Ms Smith said: "Today's families come in all different shapes and sizes - and as such, their individual circumstances are just as varied and complicated.

"We want families to have the freedom to choose between the fullest range of childcare and nursery providers. This is the best way to reconcile those complicated circumstances and help strike a proper balance between work and family.

"Parents know best, on how to bring up their children, and the Scottish Conservative plan for flexible childcare credits will make sure that's the case."

The Scottish Greens highlighted new research showing that people in Scotland are the most conscious of the £7.85 per hour Living Wage. The party want to raise the adult minimum wage of £6.50 an hour to £7.85, and for that to rise to £10 an hour by 2020.