SENIOR Scottish Conservatives are now in favour of holding a second independence referendum, according to a former party spin doctor.

Previously, any talk of putting the question back to the people of Scotland was quashed by the Tory leadership. Indeed, many Scots have joked that opposing a second referendum was the only policy the Tories had in Scotland.

The party's new leader Jackson Carlaw also firmly places himself in the "No to IndyRef2" camp.

However, as reported in The Herald on Sunday this morning, the party's former head of communications, Andy Mciver, now claims that leading party members have spoken in favour of a second referendum while attending conferences and talks.

He said: "The reality of next year is that it is all about how the Scottish Conservatives deal with indyref2.

"There is one camp who thinks they have to say yes to indyref2, and the other are saying 'It was once in a generation, the SNP are mucking up the country and people will realise that'.

"I have been involved in conferences on both sides here, but there are very senior people on both sides of this and that is a problem for the Tories.

"That is the biggest thing Jackson Carlaw has to deal with.

"Many of the Scottish Tories have got a hope that the SNP have got policy problems, in education and so on. To a degree they are right but it's wishful thinking that those issues are going to impact on election voting patterns.

"The SNP are still polling at 50% almost, so they cannot be called a government in trouble.

"The reality is, the SNP will want to make the next election about indyref2, the media will want to make it about indyref2, so it's going to be about indyref2. The Tories can go and do a school visit on a Tuesday afternoon, but the first question they get will be on indyref2.

"They need to work out what to do."