The Wee Black Book

What happened after Scotland voted No
What happened after Scotland voted No


The No campaign pumped out a constant deluge of dire warnings that independence would cause a calamitous loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs, which could only be protected by the “broad shoulders” of the UK.

vote no to protect jobs

For example, during the referendum “Better Together” declared that steel workers “across the whole of UK stand united in solidarity” behind a No vote.

But just 13 months after the No vote, Scotland’s steel industry was united in unemployment as the country’s last two mills, in Motherwell and Cambuslang, were mothballed by owners Tata - seemingly ending generations of steel production in Scotland, as the UK government stood by and did nothing.

jobs to go at tata steel

(However, the Scottish Government set up a task force and in mid-March of 2016 the Sunday Times reported that an announcement was expected “within days” of a buyer having been found for the plants, who would reopen them and eventually re-employ all the workers.

The paper quoted a source saying “the Scottish Government has been very proactive” in securing the deal, despite attacks from the trade union cited by the No campaign.)

vote no for jobs

The No camp particularly insisted that only the UK could guarantee the safety of the oil industry, and that staying in the UK would mean a North Sea “bonanza” that would be put at risk by a Yes vote.

It didn’t pan out quite that way.

oil job boom if no vote job losses after no vote

The No camp also offered similar assurances to workers in the public sector that they’d be safe in the UK but doomed in an independent Scotland, such as civil servants working for HMRC:

tax jobs safe only if no vote tax jobs safe if no vote

Once again, though, once the No vote was safely delivered the reality was rather harsher:

tax jobs lost after no vote tax redundancies after no vote hector loses job after no vote

Although it wasn’t bad news for everyone:

croydon jobs created after no vote

what they said and what happened

bdefence jobs safe in union
scottish regiments cut after no vote