May accuses Sturgeon of 'twisting the truth' in Scottish independence bid

"Politics is not a game and the management of devolved public services in Scotland is too important to be neglected", May will say in Glasgow, according to excerpts of the speech from the Conservative Party.

The First Minister insists she has a "cast iron mandate" for such a vote, after the SNP Holyrood election manifesto in 2016 said a second referendum could be held if there was a material change in circumstances from the 2014 vote, such as Scotland being removed from the European Union against its wishes.

Hitting out against Ms Sturgeon for spending her time threatening a second independence referendum instead of leading Scotland, Mrs May accused SNP of playing politics as though it were a game.

But as a result of the decision to leave the European Union, responsibilities that transfer back to Britain from Brussels "must sit at the right level to ensure our United Kingdom can operate effectively".

The prime minister's stance will be read by Sturgeon and the Scottish National party as an open challenge to call the threatened referendum on independence, suggesting the Tories are confident they can defeat the SNP.

She said standard have fallen in education which has been under the SNP's stewardship for 10 years, saying young Scottish people were losing out.

Angus Robertson, the SNP depute leader, argued the Scottish Government has a "cast-iron democratic mandate" for another vote.

May also made a promise about decisions made by the Scottish parliament.

The Scottish government have stated that they would need to seek approval from Westminster before holding a second referendum.

In a speech Tuesday, she accused the United Kingdom government of ignoring Scotland's views and failing to compromise as it prepares to trigger Article 50, kicking off the formal process of leaving the European Union.

She used her speech to call out the SNP's "obsession with independence" before accusing them of "stoking-up endless constitutional grievance and furthering their interests at the expense of Scottish public services like the NHS and education".

While there has been no official statement from United Kingdom officials in this late hour on Sunday, the prospect of even more politcal chaos, not to mention the sudden possibility of Scotland declaring independence has sent cable into a tailspin, with sterling plunging 70 pips in thin trade, sliding below 1.24 on the news. A referendum in 2014 saw Scotland vote to remain in UK.

"Our aim will be to achieve the most effective arrangements to maintain and strengthen the United Kingdom, while also respecting the devolution settlements, and we will work constructively with the devolved administrations on that basis".

  • Joey Payne