A very large crew wakes up aboard an intelligent spaceship and don't know how it works. Slowly they learn the ship's system as they hurtle towards different existential threats, as politics break out among passengers. They may be survivors of a lost Earth? Aired around 2000 - 2010. Can't find it anywhere. Was a US production, though I think the engineer (or the guy who figured things out about the ship) was Scottish.
Stargate Universe hits a lot of your hints.
- Series started in 2009.
- A large bunch of people take a Stargate and arrive on the ship Destiny. They did survive an exploding planet, but it's not Earth.
- They don't control the ship at all, and it's more or less on autopilot, but is intelligent enough to try and help them survive.
- Robert Carlyle is Scottish and his character was more or less in charge of figuring out how the ship worked.
This could be Andromeda, although it's only a little similar.
an intelligent spaceship
The ships AI (Andromeda, or Rommie in her android form) is intelligent.
Aired around 2000 - 2010
Andromeda ran from 2000 - 2005
politics break out among passengers
There are several different species aboard the ship, from the Highguard commander Dylan Hunt; to the Magog Priest Rev Bem. Each have their own agendas.
A very large crew
Andromeda was crewed by only 6 Initially
- Dylan Hunt
- Beka Valentine
- Tyr Anasazi
- Seamus Harper
- Trance Gemini
- Rev Bem
The Andromeda is caught in a black hole, causing time distortion aboard. Whilst several hundred years pass normally, mere moments pass for the ship. Additionally, only Dylan Hunt was aboard the ship originally, the rest of the crew formed a salvage team that pulled it out of the black hole.
Slowly they learn the ship's system
Dylan is aware of the ships systems and how they work, but the others need to discover it - almost all of this happens off-screen though.
I think the engineer (or the guy who figured things out about the ship) was Scottish.
The Ships engineer is Seamus Harper, who was from Boston on Earth. His accent is fairly different from the other crew, but it wasn't Scottish.