NICOLA Sturgeon’s personal approval ratings have collapsed since last year, and she is now the least popular leader at Holyrood, according to a new poll

The Ipsos Mori survey for STV found the First Minister’s ratings had fallen from +14 to -4 since September, a period which included her calling a second independence referendum.

The findings emerged just a day after Ms Sturgeon denied at the SNP manifesto launch that she had become a “divisive” figure on the doorstep.

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However the poll still found strong support for the SNP in the general election, with the party projected to hold 50 of the 56 seats in won in 2015.

It found 43 per cent of decided voters intended to back the SNP next week, down from 50 per cent in 2015, with Labour and the Tories tied on 25 per cent, and the LibDems on five.

The findings are an improvement on other recent polls for the SNP, whose support had been hovering around 40 per cent.

Support for Labour was up and down for the Tories relative to other recent polls.

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A projection by the Electoral Calculus website suggested this would translate into 50 seats for the SNP, with the Tories up six to seven, and Labour and LibDems stuck on one each.

The poll also found support for independence down since March, with 47 per cent in favour and 53 per cent against, compared to a previous 50-50 split.

Theresa May was seen as the “most capable Prime Minister” by 42 per cent of respondents, while 40 per cent said Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

Mrs May’s popularity showed an even more dramatic slump than that of Ms Sturgeon.

In September she had a +16 rating, but this is now down 43 points to -27, with almost twice as many disapproving of how she has done her job compared to those approving of it.

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Mr Corbyn’s rating was -13 in Scotland, up 13 from -26 last September.

Ms Sturgeon’s rating of -4 was 18 points down from +14 from last year, when people were asked how she was performing as First Minister.

Ms Davidson was +5, down 26 from a high of +12; Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale was -2, up 8 compared to -10; and Scottish LibDem leader was +6 and Green Patrick Harvie +12.

The Scottish opinion monitor took place between May 22 and 27 with 1016 members of the public over the age of 18 taking part.

Scottish Labour campaign manager James Kelly said: “This is another encouraging poll .

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“Support for Ruth Davidson is declining as voters reject her vision for a more divided society and turn to Kezia Dugdale’s vision for a country for the many, not the few.

“With Labour surging in the polls across the UK, voters have a real chance to deliver a Labour government that will build a better Scotland as part of the UK.”