The Scottish independence debate is still on as knife edge with a new poll today finding just two percentage points between yes and no – and nearly one in five voters undecided.
At the end of a week of intense political campaigning with the No camp attempting to get back on the front foot, the ICM poll for the Guardian suggests that it has had little effect on voters.
The poll, the first to be done using a telephone canvas rather than an online panel, finds support for No on 51 per cent and Yes on 49 per cent once don’t knows were excluded. Including undecideds, the rounded figures leave Yes on 40 per cent, and No on 42 per cent.
The poll also suggests very high levels of political engagement. Eighty-seven per cent of respondents described themselves as “absolutely certain to vote” – compared to the 55 per cent who said the same thing about the next Westminster election.
Unusually, young people are almost as engaged as their elders, with 82 per cent of 16- to 24-year-olds and 87 per cent of 25-34s insisting that they are 10 out of 10 sure that they will cast a vote.
Those aged 25-34 are most inclined to back independence by 57 per cent to 43 per cent. In contrast people aged over 65 are most likely to back the Union by 61 per cent to 39 per cent.
Later today Ed Miliband is expected to share a platform with the former Prime Minister Gordon Brown as part of the No campaign while the Ukip leader Nigel Farage is also campaigning in Scotland.
Speaking from the campaign trail in Aberdeen, Alex Salmond said Mr Farage could be viewed as an asset to the Yes camp.
“He's not in the Yes campaign but, yes I think he is an asset in this sense: one of the motivating forces behind people voting yes, one of the several reasons, the principal reason is that some want to see a more prosperous and fairer country,” he said.
“A lot of people in Scotland have no time for that and therefore Mr Farage is a rival to Scotland and will be an asset to the Yes campaign, and a huge embarrassment of course to the No campaign."
Writing in the Daily Record this morning, Mr Salmond said that Scotland stands on the cusp of history and spoke of a "flourishing of national self confidence.
“It’s this revival in Scottish confidence that tells me we’ll make a great success of an independent Scotland.
“After all the case for Yes is based on the firm belief that the best people to take the best decisions about Scotland are the people who live and work here.”
His comments come after banks including RBS and Lloyds announced contingency plans to move south of the border in the event of independence.
Scotland's bragging rights
Scotland's bragging rights
1/19 Baby scans
Ian Donald, a Scottish physician, invented ultrasound while at the University of Glasgow in the 1950s which, of course, is of the utmost importance for baby scans
2/19 iPhone 6
Alexander Graham Bell was educated in Edinburgh, but left Scotland when he was 15. He made his way to Boston - via London and Canada - and in 1876 invented the telephone at the age of just 29. No Bell, no iPhone 6.
3/19 Dolly the sheep
The first animal was cloned at the Roslin Institute in Scotland. Dolly the Sheep lived there from her birth in 1996 to her death in 2003. Her stuffed remains are housed at Edinburgh's Royal Museum
4/19 The bicycle
The first pedal cycle was the work of a blacksmith's son from Dumfriesshire. Kirkpatrick Macmillan was quite unconcerned by the fuss his invention created - and didn't even bother to try and patent it
Sir Alexander Fleming was born in Lochfield in Ayrshire in 1881. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest ever Scots after his interest in natural bacterial action and viruses led to the discovery of penicillin
6/19 The BBC
Though few would say they see the BBC as a Scottish institution, its founder John Reith actually came from Glasgow. He was its first general manager when it was set up as a private company in 1922, and later its first director general when it was made public in 1927
7/19 The wheel
Yes, Scotland invented the wheel. Well, not quite the wheel - the pneumatic tyre. John Boyd Dunlop made the first practical tyre containing air in 1887
8/19 The US Navy (and the SAS)
The US Navy was created largely by John Paul Jones, who was born in Kirkcudbrightshire, while Sir David Stirling founded the SAS
Sir Robert Watson-Watt was born in Brechin and educated in Dundee. He worked for the Air Ministry on 'The Detection of Aircraft by Radio Methods', and by the outbreak of WWII had established radar stations along the east and southern coasts of England
10/19 The adhesive postage stamp
James Chalmers invented the adhesive postage stamp in 1838. He was from Arbroath
11/19 Peter Pan
Peter Pan first appeared as a character in The Little White Bird, a 1902 novel by J M Barrie. Barrie was born in Kirriemuir, Angus
12/19 Aussie Rules football
The first game of Aussie Rules was played in 1858, when it was set up to bridge the gap between different forms of the game played in England and Scotland
13/19 Golf (of course)
Golf was first recorded in Scotland in the 15th century, and the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews is the world governing body. Scotland is widely promoted as 'The Home of Golf'
14/19 Pie charts (and line charts and bar charts)
The Scottish engineer William Playfair was the founder of the first statistical graphics between 1786 and 1801, in what has become known as a 'milestone' in data visualisation
15/19 The dugout
The dugout was invented by Aberdeen FC coach Donald Colmanin in the 1920s (presumably because he was bored of being rained on)
James Braid, a surgeon and amateur scientist born in 1795 in Kinross-shire, is regarded as the Father of Hypnotism
17/19 Lime cordial
Lauchlan Rose patented the method used to preserve lime cordial without alcohol in 1867, and the first factory producing Rose's was set up in Leith in 1868
18/19 The Bank of England
Despite the name, the Bank of England was actually devised by a Scot. Born in Dumfries and Galloway in 1658, Sir William Paterson tried unsuccessfully to found a separate Scottish Empire but spent his last years in Westminster. He died an advocate of Union
19/19 The toaster
Alan MacMasters was a Scottish scientist, born in Edinburgh, who is credited with creating the first electric bread toaster
Yesterday he called for an inquiry into why “a Treasury source” discussed RBS plans to relocate its headquarters to London with the BBC and other news outlets before the bank made the announcement officially.
But in a letter to the First Minister last night the Cabinet Secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood said that there had been no breach of the Ministerial Code in relation to the reports of RBS’ position in the media.
With referendum day just six days away, both sides are picking up the pace and will be campaign across the country.
Salmond will be campaigning in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Stirling, Aberdeen, Dundee, Inverness and Perth.
Labour leader Ed Miliband will be joined by former prime minister Gordon Brown and Scottish Labour leader Johann Lamont at a rally in Glasgow, as the party seeks to take the lead in building support for the No campaign.
Additional reporting by APReuse content