Nicola Sturgeon would insist on coffee fix for desert island


The complete works of Jane Austen and a coffee machine would accompany Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon if she was cast adrift on a desert island.

Ms Sturgeon also said she would spend her time listening to the Robert Burns song My Love Is Like A Red Red Rose - which was played at her wedding to SNP chief executive Peter Murrell.

The SNP leader is the latest politician to take part in BBC Radio Four's Desert Island Discs.

Ms Sturgeon admitted she is unlikely to be reading Austen and drinking coffee for long, after telling presenter Kirsty Young that she is "not practical in the slightest".

Nicola Sturgeon: "I am going to take a coffee machine, because the one thing I cannot do without in the morning is my injection of caffeine. I like it strong with a little bit of milk.

"What I take with me is pretty academic because I won't survive for very long."

Joining Young as a castaway, Ms Sturgeon also picked out eight records she would like to take to the desert island, selecting the Burns song as sung by Scottish artist Eddi Reader as the one she would most like to save.

"This is special to me, partly because I love Robert Burns, but also because this song was played just before Peter and I took our vows at our wedding," she said.

Other choices include Step Inside Love by Cilla Black, whom Ms Sturgeon said she had a "childhood obsession with", and Sisters Are Doin It For Themselves by the Eurythmics and Aretha Franklin - a song which she said "speaks to the feminist in me".

During the programme, the First Minister also spoke about her childhood in Irvine, North Ayrshire, her early political awakening" in the 1980s, and her more recent experiences of fighting the independence referendum campaign, taking over from Alex Salmond, and winning 56 seats in the general election in May.

"My political awakening, if I can be as grand as to call it that, was all about what was happening around me," she said. "It wasn't some romantic, patriotic vision of Scotland going back to what it had been 300 years previously.

"It was very much about a sense of hopelessness in the community I was growing up in."

"I was fascinated, long before I joined the SNP, in the world around me, current affairs really interested me."

Reflecting on her political career as she marks the anniversary of her first year as First Minister, she added that she "regularly feels overwhelmed" by some aspects of her job.

She added: "He (Murrell) bears the brunt of most it. I am quite hot-headed, I am quite impulsive, fortunately it doesn't last very long."

Asked about their relationship, she said: "We worked together particularly closely on a campaign, and then when the campaign ended and there was no real reason for us to see each other every day the way we had done for the last three months, I suddenly realised I wanted to see him every day - and luckily he felt the same."

On questions over why the couple do not have children, Ms Sturgeon added: "That can be hurtful if I am being brutally honest about it, because people make assumptions about why we don't have children.

"The assumption that people sometimes make is that I have made a cold, calculated decision to put my career ahead of having family, and that's not true.

"Sometimes things happen in life, sometimes they don't. Don't get me wrong I have no regrets - if I could turn the clock back 10 or 20 years I wouldn't want to fundamentally change the path my life has taken."

:: The programme is due to air at 11.15am on Sunday.