Scotland politics

Scottish independence: Inverness referendum debate round-up

Twitter icons Image copyright PA

Ahead of the 18 September independence referendum, BBC Scotland hosted a debate in Inverness giving voters the chance to quiz politicians and commentators at the heart of the historic vote.

But the event wasn't just for the audience facing the panel - through social media, using the #bbcindyref hashtag, plus email and text - you told us what you thought.

Here are highlights from the on-air discussion, and the pick of what you said about our debate from the Highland capital.

The place

Name: Inverness

Something interesting: The first British cabinet meeting held outside London took place in Inverness. It was on September 7 1921, when David Lloyd George was prime minister.

Famous faces

Image copyright Reuters

Invernessians of note include Doctor Who and Guardians of the Galaxy actress Karen Gillan.

The panellists

Angus Robertson: SNP Westminster leader and MP for Moray.

Danny Alexander: Chief secretary to the Treasury and MP for the Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey.

Blair McDougall: Campaign director of Better Together, the campaign to keep the Union.

Ken Stott: Scottish Actor best known for his roles in Rebus and The Hobbit.

Nicky Marr: Columnist for the Inverness Courier.

The questions

1. Is there really any need for a "Plan B" alternative to currency union?

2. Does a "No" vote threaten the existence of the NHS in Scotland?

3. Has Boris Johnson let the Westminster cat out of the bag on no further powers for Scotland?

4. Social media is rife with rumours of a massive oil discover in the Clair Field. Can you confirm this?

5. What should be done to pull the country together in the event of either result?

The tweetgraph

Use this online tool to follow what was being said on social media using #bbcindyref - which trended at number one in the UK on Twitter.

BBC data journalist Marc Ellison, said of the results: "The 2,149 tweets is almost double the number written during the April debate BBC Scotland hosted in Kirkwall - and people are still posting about the event this morning.

"The main spike in posts (55 tweets) was at the 20:47 mark as the discussion on a possible currency union hotted up."

"Such a level of interaction suggests there is no referendum fatigue just weeks before polling day on 18 September."

What you said

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Peat Worrier tweeted: A rather good edition of the #bbcindyref, if I may say so. A bit of heat, some light, and a sane, engaged, interesting Highland audience.

Euan McColm tweeted: Let's be like malta or kuwait says ken stott, a marvellous actor. #bbcindyref

Gemma McQueen posted on Facebook: It seems to be a given that the current government don't need to predict the future because it is impossible, however, the Yes party are expected to deliver every detail. How can they?

Mark texted: I am thirteen years old, yet I can clearly see how blatantly ignorant the Yes campaign have been about the fact that the Bank of England states that Scotland WON'T have the pound as their currency. Surely, at the end of the day, if they say no, we won't have it?

The arguments

Image copyright PA

Danny Alexander: "I think a currency union wouldn't work for an independent Scotland.

"In many ways Scotland would have, under those arrangements, less economic freedom, less economic sovereignty, less ability to affect our own economic destiny than we have at the moment."

Angus Robertson: "It seems eminently sensible that, after a 'Yes' vote there is a currency union.

"We also know that senior people on the 'No' side agree that is what is likely to happen because we are able to read it across the front page of the Guardian newspaper, with a senior minister saying a currency union is indeed what would happen."

The iPlayer

If you missed the referendum debate from Inverness, check it out on BBC iPlayer.

Join in

If you've enjoyed tweeting, texting and messaging on the Scottish independence referendum, you might now like to be in the TV audience, putting your questions directly to the politicians.

If you would like to be in the studio audience for the remaining debates, email your details to referendumdebate@bbc.co.uk or fill in this form to apply.

1. Name and address

2. Which programme location are you applying for?

3. Which two issues would you most like to discuss?

4. How old are you?

5. What is your gender?

6. What is your occupation? If you are retired, what was your occupation before retiring?

7. Which ethnic group do you belong to?

Other (please specify)

8. Do you consider yourself to have any disabilities?

9. If disabled, do you require wheelchair access?

10. If there were a General Election tomorrow, which political party would you be most likely to vote for?

Other (please state)

11. If there was a Scottish Election tomorrow which political party would you be most likely to vote for?

Other (please state)

12. If there was an independence referendum tomorrow how would you vote?

13. How did you vote at the last General Election?

14. How did you vote at the last Scottish Election?

15. Are you a member of a political party?

16. If you are a member do you take an active role?

17. Are you active in any campaign groups?

18. Are you active in any referendum campaign groups?

Other (please specify)

19. We contact applicants individually - if any of your friends or family are applying with you please supply their names and telephone numbers so that we may contact them to discuss their applications.

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