Madhu Satsangi, Stirling University
…from the last census to the most recent date for which data are available, the population of rural Scotland and the proportion of national population that can be called rural (both ‘remote’ and ‘accessible’ on Scottish Govt definitions) actually increased.
Of course it would be nonsensical to say that all of rural Scotland has seen similar patterns: we have fragile communities on the n + w seaboards, many of the Western Isles, etc. But we have buoyancy on other islands (eg Skye), and in Aberdeenshire, Perthshire and much of Inverness-shire.
If you want proof, you will see it in Scottish Govt statistics, or with further interpretation along with data for the other countries of the UK in a book that I have written with 2 colleagues. Flyer for the book here http://www.senscot.net/docs/msbook0909.pdf