Lord Heseltine also argued if the SNP lost in a second independence referendum, it would swiftly begin the push for a third one. He pointed out: “The Scots Nats will use any device they can to further their cause; that’s what politics is about.”
On a second independence referendum, the peer made clear he was against any form of a separation vote.
He added: “They are nasty affairs because they are deeply divisive.
“They divide families, they divide communities. They rarely deal with the issues concerned.”
The former deputy UK prime minister who served under John Major also stressed a rise in Scottish nationalism was stoppable but warned the Union was at a “real risk.”
He added: “The argument has been raging for some considerable time. My concern is the Union holds together.
“Just like Britain leaving the EU, Scotland leaving the UK would be a historic tragedy and I hope it doesn’t happen.
“I know what the polls are saying and it increases my concern and argues for a very determined argument the other way.”
Lord Heseltine claimed the big drive towards Scottish independence was because of the 2008 economic crisis.
READ MORE: SNP issues threat to Boris over bid to retain EU Erasmus scheme
Pollsters interviewed 1,002 people aged 16 and over between February 4 and 9.
Lord Heseltine, who strongly opposed Brexit, had the Tory whip suspended in 2019 after announcing he would vote for the pro-remain Liberal Democrats rather than the Tories in the EU Parliament elections.
He remains a non-affiliated peer.
In response, SNP deputy leader Keith Brown MSP said: “With 21 consecutive polls showing majority support for independence, it is clear that Scotland’s future must be in Scotland’s hands – not Boris Johnson’s.
“People in Scotland have the right to decide their own future, in a post-pandemic referendum.”