Scottish independence: What's going on in Scotland?

On 18 September, voters in Scotland will be asked in a referendum whether they want the nation to become independent from the rest of the United Kingdom.

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Why is it happening?
Wallace monument The Wallace monument, built to honour Scottish freedom fighter William Wallace

The Scottish National Party, whose central aim is independence, won the 2011 Scottish Parliament election by a landslide, giving them a mandate to stage the vote.

On referendum day itself, voters across Scotland will head to polling booths to answer the Yes/No question: "Should Scotland be an independent country?"

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The arguments for and against
Alex Salmond

The Scottish government, led by First Minister Alex Salmond, says the 300-year-old Union is no longer fit for purpose and that an independent Scotland, aided by its oil wealth, would be one of the world's richest countries.

He says it's time for Scotland to take charge of its own destiny, free from what he describes as the "shackles" of a London-based UK parliament.

On the opposite side of the debate, the UK government, led by Prime Minister David Cameron, says Britain is one of the world's most successful social and political unions.

The differing styles of Salmond and Cameron

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What are the key issues?
Oil rig

Two major issues have emerged during the campaign - oil and currency.

Oil

North Sea oil and gas reserves (or more precisely the tax take from Scotland's share) are vital to the Scottish government's case for independence.

Mr Salmond says earmarking a tenth of revenues - about £1bn a year - could form an oil fund similar to the one operated in Norway, creating a £30bn sovereign wealth pot over a generation.

Mr Cameron says the North Sea has been a British success story - and now the oil and gas is getting harder to recover, it's more important than ever to back the industry with the "broad shoulders" of the UK.

The SNP's opponents also argue they're pinning future hopes on something that's eventually going to run out.

North Sea oil in numbers

40bn

barrels extracted

24bn

could remain

  • 30-40 years of production remaining

  • £57bn tax revenue predicted by Scottish Government by 2018

  • 38% fall in oil revenue predicted by Office for Budget Responsibility by 2017-18

PA

North Sea oil: Facts and figures

Currency

Currency has been the other big area of disagreement.

Under independence, the Scottish government wants to keep the pound as part of a formal currency union with the rest of the UK.

It argues this is in everyone's best interests, but the three main UK parties - the Conservatives, Labour and the Liberal Democrats - won't go for it, and say that whoever's in power after the next UK election will not agree to such a move.

This position came as the UK Treasury published analysis from its top civil servant, Sir Nicholas Macpherson who outlined several reasons why currency unions were "fraught with difficulty".

Scotland's first minister has warned the UK government not to dictate the terms of the debate

On the currency, the PM says Alex Salmond is now a man without a plan

Currency debate explained

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Do people want independence?
woman

Hard to say with any great certainty at the moment, although recent polling has prompted both sides to say the result is now too close to call.

While polling trends generally indicate most people don't want independence, the "Yes" side says the momentum is now with them, after a a YouGov poll for the Sunday Times suggested that, of those who have made up their mind, 51% planned to back independence, while 49% intended to vote "No".

Polling expert John Curtice said that, for the past few months, it looked like the referendum race had stalled, with polling rarely departing very far from No 57%, Yes 43% (once the undecided were left aside).

But the professor of politics at Glasgow's Strathclyde University says the race may now have become a lot tighter.

You can keep up with the latest trends through the BBC's referendum poll tracker.

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Who gets to vote
cakes

People aged 16 and over who live in Scotland get a direct say on the nation's future - as long as they're registered to vote.

There are some requirements, though. Eligible voters must be British, EU or Commonwealth citizens with permission to enter or stay in the UK.

That means the 800,000 Scots who live in other parts of the UK don't get a vote, while the 400,000 people from elsewhere in Britain who live in Scotland do.

Voter breakdown

Members of the armed services and their families serving overseas who are registered to vote in Scotland also get to vote.

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What happens on 19 September?
A Yes campaigner and a girl with a union jack painted on her face

On the day after the referendum, if there's a "Yes" vote, the Scottish government is likely to have a big party. After that, it will get down to the process of negotiating with the rest of the UK.

Mr Salmond wants to declare "Independence Day" in March 2016 with the first elections to an independent Scottish parliament in May. But, first, an agreement will have to be reached with what remains of the UK on issues like Scotland's share of the national debt.

However, if there's a "No" vote, the UK government is likely to have a big party, then turn its attention to the issue of giving more powers to the devolved Scottish Parliament.

The Liberal Democrats have been considering this issue the longest, and a commission led by former leader Sir Menzies Campbell, says there is now growing agreement among the pro-Union parties that the Edinburgh parliament should get significant new financial powers, like increased responsibility over tax-raising.

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Let's end with a history lesson
William Wallace impersonator

Thanks to the 1995 Hollywood blockbuster Braveheart, many people are familiar with the Scottish wars of independence, fought between the late 13th and early 14th centuries.

A series of events saw England's King Edward overpower the Scottish kingdom in 1296, before Robert the Bruce inflicted some serious payback in the battle of Bannockburn in 1314 - an event which has just reached its 700th anniversary.

Culloden

Other key moments through the ages included Bonnie Prince Charlie's ill-fated invasion of England in 1745, culminating in defeat at Culloden the following year.

Despite various challenges, Scotland is generally regarded to have asserted its independence from about 843, until the official unification with England took place in 1707.

At the time, the view was that Scotland was desperate for cash, but opponents of the move were outraged by claims that the Scots who put their names to the Act of Union were bribed.

Robert Burns

The episode moved Scotland's Bard, Robert Burns, to write: "We are bought and sold for English gold. Such a parcel of rogues in a nation."

The Scottish government now hopes to write another chapter in Scotland's history.

More Scotland politics stories

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Scotland Decides: SCOTLAND VOTES NO

  1. No 2,001,926
  2. Yes 1,617,989
After 32 of 32 counts Results in detail

Referendum Live

  1.  
    10:51: Church says 'we are one Scotland'

    Right Reverend John Chalmers, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, said he was proud of the spirit of reconciliation shown by Alex Salmond and Alistair Darling this morning.

    Speaking on Good Morning Scotland, he said: "What I have heard this morning has been wonderful. As a minister, I feel for those who feel dispirited, but I think the words that they have heard from leaders of both campaigns have been reassuring, restrained and they have spoken about working together.

    "I think that is where we are now and I am looking forward to that process of working together."

    Rt Rev Chalmers added it is time to take down the Yes and No signs from windows and lampposts and "make it more obvious we are one Scotland".

     
  2.  
    10:50: Labour debate

    BBC political correspondent Iain Watson has been looking at how the Labour Party will deal with the No vote fallout. The prospect of more powers for Scotland is opening up a debate within party about whether a more distinctly English voice needs to be heard, he writes on his blog.

     
  3.  
    @davidwalliams 10:47: David Walliams, Comedian

    David Walliams, Comedian, tweets: I am so pleased Scotland has voted to stay in the United Kingdom. Wales, don't get any ideas please.

     
  4.  
    10:46: 'Dejected' over Punch & Judy

    Writer and broadcaster Lesley Riddoch, who had campaigned for a Yes vote, says she feels a "bit dejected", adding: "It's the first day I haven't had a badge on so it feels like a new start for sure."

    She says of the campaign: "Part of the tedium that has been created by this campaign was a kind of Tweedledum, Tweedledee mechanism - where one politician becomes Punch the other automatically becomes Judy."

     
  5.  
    Email: haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk 10:45: Get Involved

    Iain Spowart from Aberdeenshire: I'm pleased with the result. Alex Salmond was very gracious and I agree with his statement that it is now time for Scotland to work together for the future, for a strong Scotland within a strong union, and fair powers for Scotland, as well as England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

     
  6.  
    @GrahamGGrant 10:40: Graham Grant, Home Affairs Editor, Scottish Daily Mail

    Graham Grant, Home Affairs Editor, Scottish Daily Mail tweets: Roughly equal numbers lining up outside the Apple store in Glasgow at 5am for new iPhone as there were in 'Independence Square.' #indyref

     
  7.  
    10:38: Voters' views

    The BBC News Channel has been speaking to some voters.

    Sandra voted No: "I was terribly worried because I feel that united we stand, divided we fall." She adds that she never waivered in her decision.

    Taylor voted Yes: "I was a No to begin with but it was actually my flatmate and my family and those around me who [persuaded me] and [when] I saw the facts and figures I changed to a Yes." She says the rest of her family also changed to Yes voters.

     
  8.  
    10:33: Cox: Westminster 'disconnect'

    Scottish actor Brian Cox, who campaigned heavily for a Yes vote, says he is disappointed but has had "the time of my life".

    Actor Brian Cox

    "It's been the most extraordinary two weeks... I've loved it, I am so proud of our country.

    "People have shown that social democracy really works and "it's a triumph as far as that's concerned", he says.

    "We have shaken the powers that be in Westminster, I think they should move now," he adds, saying there remains a "serious disconnect" between the political Establishment and the rest of the country.

     
  9.  
    10:30: Pound weakens

    The pound has been in retreat since about 09:00. Overnight it was trading well above $1.65 but it's now a little below $1.64. "Some devolution uncertainty will remain, distracting investors' attention from superior UK growth relative to Europe," said Adam Myers, currency strategist at Credit Agricole.

    Pound dollar
     
  10.  
    10:27: International reaction

    A number of leading Indian news websites are running their own "live page" on the Scotland results, and some fear there will be calls for a similar referendum in Indian-administered Kashmir and the country's north-eastern region, BBC Monitoring observes.

    Kashmir separatist leader Umar Farooq has demanded that the people of Kashmir should be given a chance for a referendum, the Mail Today newspaper reports. Other activists from the region have echoed Mr Farooq's call.

     
  11.  
    @BBCGavinHewitt 10:26: BBC News Europe Editor Gavin Hewitt

    BBC News Europe Editor Gavin Hewitt tweets: Spanish PM Rajoy - mindful of Catalonia - says 'we are very happy Scotland is staying with us'. Calls it positive 'for integration of EU.'

     
  12.  
    @DanBilefsky 10:19: New York Times reporter Dan Bilefsky

    New York Times reporter Dan Bilefsky tweets: Interesting: On #Scottish "No" vote, the pollsters got it wrong, while the betting markets were right on the mark

     
  13.  
    10:15: Oil and Gas

    Bob Collier, Chief Executive of Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce, told Good Morning Scotland that a No vote had "not entirely" alleviated uncertainty from the oil and gas industry overnight.

    "We need the government to apply the results of the Wood report," he said. "We need to make sure the right kind of fiscal regime is available off shore to get the maximum possible return for the whole country."

    Mr Collier added there has been uncertainty for a while, first with the ballot question, then the issues of currency and the EU, and now with what additional devolution means.

     
  14.  
    @TVKev 10:10: Kevin O'Sullivan, Daily Mirror columnist

    Kevin O'Sullivan, Daily Mirror columnist tweets: Respect to Andy Murray for having the courage to declare his support for independence...

     
  15.  
    10:08: What the papers say

    While papers went to press before the results of Scotland's independence referendum were declared, the story is nonetheless on front pages.

    Papers

    Many papers produced late editions to carry the news that Scots voted No in the historic independence referendum.

     
  16.  
    Tweet @bbcscotlandnews 10:02: Get involved

    There have been more than 85,000 tweets about the Referendum between 9am and 10am this morning. That's a drop of 35% on the previous hour.

    Comedy writer Armando Iannucci's tweet is one of the most-shared tweets in the last hour: "84.6% One way to unite today would be for every Scot to wear that number as a badge of pride. An extraordinary turnout. #indyref" was retweeted nearly 500 times.

    Actor Simon Pegg is currently one of the most influential accounts.

    The Guardian's result graphic is amongst the more shared photos.

    You can join the conversation via #indyref, tweet @BBCPolitics or go to the BBC News page on Facebook.

     
  17.  
    09:56: 'Rocked to the core'

    Entrepreneur Sir Tom Hunter told Good Morning Scotland he was really proud Scotland had "rocked the political establishment to its core".

    He added: "That's got to be good. I think the people have shown that we want change. We want change from our politicians, and that is really important. It is fantastic day for democracy."

     
  18.  
    09:51: A view from France

    BBC Monitoring has been looking at reaction to the vote in the European press. French daily Le Monde's London correspondent Eric Albert says that the voters faced two very similar options.

    "What if the result of the referendum on independence in Scotland is not all that important, after all? Despite the victory of the 'no' with 55.42% of the vote, the Scottish nation will move away from the rest of the United Kingdom.

    le Monde reports on Scotland's referendum

    "Behind the rhetoric and appearances, the Scottish effectively faced two very similar options: on the one hand, independence 'light', while staying very close to the rest of the United Kingdom; on the other, maximum decentralization... which will give it far-reaching autonomy."

    #ScotlandDecides and #Ecosse were among top Twitter trends in France this morning,

     
  19.  
    @davieclegg 09:44: David Clegg, Political Editor, Daily Record

    David Clegg, Political Editor, Daily Record tweets: To take support for Indy to 45% is a remarkable achievement for Alex Salmond and the SNP. Woe betide the UK parties if they don't deliver.

     
  20.  
    @geraldhowarth 09:44: Sir Gerald Howarth

    Sir Gerald Howarth, Conservative MP for Aldershot tweets: Major constitutional changes must not be rushed. Appeasing Scottish Nationalism is what brought us to the brink of disaster #Union

     
  21.  
    09:43: 'Scotland 2.0'

    Asked what additional powers he would like to see in the Scottish Parliament, Sir Tom added: "Tax-raising powers and further devolved powers over social security.

    "I think the SNP government have done a very good job over the past while at governing Scotland and I think Scotland is a better place because of it. Now, I think it is time to move on to Scotland 2.0"

     
  22.  
    Martin Schulz, President of the European Parliament 09:40: Result 'is a sound decision'

    The Scottish people have voted to remain part of the United Kingdom. First of all I welcome that this vote took place within a democratically agreed process inside of the country.

    I believe that, in a time when sticking together has proven its worth in meeting the challenges we are facing in all walks of life, this is a sound decision.

     
  23.  
    09:36: Sir Tom on 'devomax'

    Business and entrepreneur Sir Tom Hunter, speaking on Good Morning Scotland, said: "I've listened to Alex Salmond and Alistair Darling speak this morning and they both accepted the result with humility, which I think is really important now - that we have got to being Scotland back together.

    "I've always been uncomfortable that in Scotland we can spend the money but we can't raise the money," Sir Tom said.

    "I think that is a lopsided balance sheet, and it causes resentment. I fully understand why people in the rest of the UK would say 'well, hang on a minute'.

    "Therefore, I would like to see us having more power to raise our money and spend it. That's accountability, and that's grown up devolution."

     
  24.  
    09:32: Miliband outlines 'our mission'

    Labour leader Ed Miliband pays tribute to Alistair Darling, saying he "played one of the most important roles in keeping this country together".

    Change begins today, he tells Labour activists in Glasgow.

    "We will deliver on stronger powers, stronger Scottish powers and a stronger Scotland."

    The next eight months are about "how we change our country together," he continues.

    "Let us be able to tell our children and our grandchildren that we did not just keep our country together, we changed our country together. That is our mission."

     
  25.  
    09:31: More powers

    Mr Darling on more powers for Scotland: "We must at all costs see that implemented on the timescale that was agreed."

     
  26.  
    09:30: 'Emphatic answer'

    Alistair Darling, speaking at a Labour rally, says: "All my adult life the question has been around us... and at 10 past six this morning, that question was answered emphatically."

     
  27.  
    09:26: English laws Andrew Neil Presenter, The Daily Politics

    Re English votes for English laws, Labour must work out how to save huge in-built advantage without being depicted by Tories as anti-English

     
  28.  
    09:25: Miliband to speak

    Labour leader Ed Miliband has just arrived at a party rally in Glasgow where he will shortly give a speech.

     
  29.  
    09:24: Striking pictures
    Pic

    Striking images have been coming in from around the country. See more here.

     
  30.  
    09:23: 'Get my feet up for a wee while' Chief Returning Officer Mary Pitcaithly

    "I'm tired. It's gone very well and it's been very smooth. All of the counts have been very good and we were able to give a result in the same kind of timeframe we had promised.

    Chief Returning Officer Mary Pitcaithly

    "It's been a long night but people are waking up to find out there has been a clear result.

    "I'm going to try to have some breakfast and then get my feet up for a wee while before going back into the office.

    "I'm delighted that it passed off, by and large, without any incident. People were very good natured throughout the day; if they had to queue at all they were very short queues.

    "The comedy, camaraderie and friendship people were showing to each other in the queues was great to see."

     
  31.  
    09:19: Lamont praises youth

    Johann Lamont, leader of the Scottish Labour Party, thanks party members - and particularly young activists - for helping to secure the No result. "This was a huge moment for Scottish Labour... much of this campaign was driven by the Scottish Labour party," she tells the Labour rally in Glasgow.

    She goes on to say "this is a time to savour but not to be triumphalist". It is vital change now happens and calls for action not simply words, she says.

     
  32.  
    09:17: Tax and benefits

    Scotland has voted to remain part of the United Kingdom but Scots can still expect significant changes in the taxes they will pay and the welfare benefits they will receive, writes Personal Finance Reporter Brian Milligan.

    Personal finance
     
  33.  
    Gary Lineker 09:16: Referendum reaction

    Football pundit Gary Lineker tweets: GREAT Britain!

     
  34.  
    09:14: UK to play 'leading role' Anders Fogh Rasmussen, NATO Secretary General

    I fully respect the choice that the people of Scotland have made in yesterday's referendum.

    I welcome Prime Minister Cameron's statement that the United Kingdom will go forward as a united country.

    The United Kingdom is a founding member of NATO, and I am confident that the United Kingdom will continue to play a leading role to keep our Alliance strong.

     
  35.  
    Sadiq Khan and Iain Macwhirter 09:13: Referendum reaction

    Sadiq Khan MP tweets: Most important vote in generation saw 1000s of 16 & 17 year olds vote in #indyref How can we deny them vote in General Election?

    Iain Macwhirter, political commentator Herald & Sunday Heraldtweets: Scots thought this was about their future - turns out it was all about setting up an English parliament.

     
  36.  
    Duncan Mavin and John Rentoul 09:11: Referendum reaction

    Duncan Mavin, Europe Finance Editor, Wall Street Journal, tweets: #indyref raised big questions about UK governance. For investors, politics likely to remain messy and unpredictable.

    John Rentoul, Independent on Sunday columnist tweets: Opinion polls underestimated No vote by 2 or 3 points. How much will shy Tories be worth in general election next year?

     
  37.  
    09:09: 'Work together'

    Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael has just released a statement. He says: "I hope all parties will now accept this vote was fair, legal and decisive and we have settled the question in a way which means we will not keep coming back to it.

    Alistair Carmichael

    "The decisive choice of people in Scotland to remain part of the UK is the beginning of a new, stronger country for us all.

    "It comes at the end of a hard-fought two year process which has raised important issues for Scotland and engaged a huge number of people in the debate.

    "We will continue that process by working together as one country, across the whole political spectrum, making life better for the people who live and work here.

    "It's also clear that the people of Scotland have overwhelmingly voted for a stronger Scottish Parliament within the United Kingdom based on the cross-part plan for more powers. That work will begin today and we will deliver it for everyone."

     
  38.  
    09:06: Tax, spending & welfare James Landale Deputy political editor

    The Downing Street constitutional declaration - as it will become known - marks the start of what potentially could be massive constitutional change.

    In particular, the prime minister has promised to give English MPs a greater say over legislation that affects England. He made clear this would cover the same issues over which Scotland will have greater control - tax, spending and welfare. And the changes will be agreed at the same pace with draft legislation by January.

    But David Cameron did not spell out the detail, leaving a policy vacuum that will now be filled by Conservative MPs and an army of constitutional experts and think tanks. Everything from a full English parliament to complicated plans for English grand committees will be discussed.

    The risk for the PM is that he loses control of this debate.

    Full blog.

     
  39.  
    09:05: Analysis John Curtice Professor of politics at Strathclyde University

    Total number of votes cast:

    Yes - 1,617,989

    No - 2,001,926

    3,429 rejected papers - want of an official mark 16, voting in favour of both 691, voter identified 168, unmarked or void for uncertainty 2,554.

    This means that Yes won 45% of the vote and No 55% of the vote exactly in line with the BBC prediction at just after 05:00.

     
  40.  
    Tweet @bbcscotlandnews 09:03: Get involved

    There have been nearly 130,000 tweets about the Referendum between 8am and 9am this morning. That's a dip of 22% on the previous hour.

    One of the most shared tweets in the past hour has come from comedian Frankie Boyle: "To be fair, I've always hated Scotland" retweeted nearly 3,000 times.

    A transcript of David Cameron's speech is amongst the more shared photos.

    You can join the conversation via #indyref, tweet @BBCPolitics or go to the BBC News page on Facebook.

     
  41.  
    09:00: Continuing coverage Gerry Holt BBC News

    BBC One's results programme has just ended - but stay with us for continuing coverage and all the latest reaction.

     
  42.  
    08:56: Referendum recap

    A reminder now of the dramatic events of the last 24 hours:

    Pro-union supporters celebrate as Scottish independence referendum results come in at a "Better Together" event in Glasgow, Scotland
    • Scotland has voted to stay in the United Kingdom
    • 55% of voters said No to independence, while 45% said Yes
    • Turnout was nearly 84.5%
    • The final result was announced in Edinburgh in the last hour by Scotland's Chief Counting Officer Mary Pitcaithly

    Full story.

     
  43.  
    08:55: 'Momentous decision'

    Labour MP Douglas Alexander: "A momentous decision, a momentous night and, I think, a great, great, day for Scotland.

    Douglas Alexander

    "I couldn't be more proud of the decision that we have made to work for faster, safer and better change than the risks of separation. The choice was ours but the consequences are going to be felt in every part of the United Kingdom."

     
  44.  
    @fleetstfox 08:54: fleetstreetfox, Daily Mirror columnist

    fleetstreetfox, Daily Mirror columnist tweets: Well thank goodness for that. Thank you, Scotland.

     
  45.  
    08:53: Galloway reaction

    Speaking on BBC Radio Leeds, the Respect MP and No campaigner George Galloway says: "It was a very tough fight, we were reminded all over again just how hated the Westminster political class is."

     
  46.  
    @Nigel_Farage 08:52: Farage plea

    UKIP leader Nigel Farage has just posted letters from Westminster to all 59 Scottish MPs asking them not to vote on English issues...

    Mr Farage tweets: We need a full, proper national debate about the democratic future of England #indyref

     
  47.  
    @jonsnowc4news 08:51: Jon Snow, Channel 4 News presenter

    Channel 4 News presenter Jon Snow tweets: Final 45% YES 55% NO: I'm pretty sure that for all the cash they make, not one polling outfit got the margin right.

     
  48.  
    08:50: Full Results

    Visit our Results Page for a full graphic break down of the independence referendum.

    Results Page
     
  49.  
    08:49: #indyref

    #BBCtrending looks at how the Scottish independence referendum played out on Twitter last night.

    #IndyRef
     
  50.  
    08:48: Stock market reaction

    Shares in London have opened with sharp gains. The FTSE 100 is 0.6% higher in early trading. Royal Bank of Scotland shares are up 4%, Lloyds Banking Group, which owns Bank of Scotland, is up 2.6% and energy firm SSE is up 2%.

     
  51.  
    08:47: Kamal Ahmed BBC Business editor

    Kamal Ahmed, BBC Business editor, tweets: Lloyds Bank statement on Scotland more equivocal than RBS. Keeping options open on legal domicile #indyref.

     
  52.  
    08:46: Official declaration
    Mary Pitcaithly

    Mary Pitcaithly, confirming the result, says there were 3,429 rejected papers and the reasons for rejection were:

    • Want of an official mark - 16
    • Voter in favour of both answers - 691
    • Writing a mark by which the voter could be identified: 168
    • Unmarked or void for uncertainty: 2,554
     
  53.  
    @tombradby 08:45: Tom Bradby, Political Editor, ITV News

    Tom Bradby, Political Editor, ITV News tweets: I think history is going to be pretty kind to Gordon Brown, a man who can credibly claim to have saved the financial system and the Union.

     
  54.  
    08:44: Better Together celebrate

    Supporters of Better Together celebrate in Edinburgh as the final results of the independence referendum are confirmed.

    Better Together
     
  55.  
    Text using 80295 08:43: Referendum - Your Views

    Larissa, Fife: The result is a relief but the referendum has divided the people. The 45% who voted for independence must be heard too and the party leaders must keep their promise of more powers. Let's hope that this vote will trigger a much needed overhaul of Westminster and result in more powers for the different parts of the country!

    Gary, Carmarthenshire: I'm interested to know how much this referendum has cost, but more importantly who has foot the bill. If this has been funded by Westminster using British taxpayers money then it's a disgrace. The outcome of this referendum would have impacted on the whole of the United Kingdom with only the Scottish people having a say!

    Lorna: I am deeply depressed. Heard Cameron. He will not deliver on Brown promise.

    J.Fin: Scotland had a chance to make world history. Whitehall now sees Scotland as history.

     
  56.  
    08:39: David Eades, BBC World News

    David Eades of BBC World News tweets: Referendum result opens Pandora's Box on devolution across the UK. Regional press focus on call for more powers across NE England. #indyref

     
  57.  
    08:39: Lloyds statement

    Lloyds Banking Group, which owns Bank of Scotland and Halifax said: "Lloyds Banking Group has maintained a neutral stance in this debate as we believe the decision was to be solely a matter for the people of Scotland.

    "The group is proud of its strong Scottish heritage and remains committed to having a significant presence in Scotland. We remain fully focused on supporting households and businesses in Scotland as well as right across the rest of the UK."

     
  58.  
    08:36: Final result announcement

    The final result of Scotland's referendum is being officially announced by Mary Pitcaithly, Chief Counting Officer.

     
  59.  
    08:34: Pound surges

    The pound has hit a two-year high against the Euro and a two-week high against the US dollar, as Scotland voted against independence.

    pounds

    In early Asian trade, sterling jumped 0.43% to 1.2743 euros.

    Read the full story.

     
  60.  
    Ruth Davidson MSP 08:33: @ruthdavidsonmsp

    tweets: Scotland had the biggest, broadest conversation about our future. We have to come together again & move forward together. It's all our home.

     
  61.  
    08:32: Robinson analysis Nick Robinson Political editor

    The prime minister has also promised to produce reforms which deliver the soundbite - "English votes for English laws". It was a promise made in the last Conservative manifesto. It was and is a very popular in England. There is a reason, however, why it hasn't been enacted.

    Prime Minister David Cameron

    It could create two classes of MP. It might mean a government has a majority to pass certain laws but not others (if, for example, the next Labour government did not have a majority of MPs in England).

    What's known as the West Lothian question hasn't been answered since it was first asked in 1977. (The question was - Why should the MP for Blackburn in West Lothian in Scotland be able to vote on English matters when the MP for Blackburn in Lancashire can't vote on Scottish issues?).

    This referendum may have ended one debate in Scotland - for now. It has, however, lit the touchpaper on the explosive question of where power lies in the UK.

     
  62.  
    08:28: Robinson analysis Nick Robinson Political editor

    The people have spoken. Scotland has rejected independence. The result has been accepted by both sides. So that you might think is that. Not a bit of it.

    First Minister Alex Salmond

    The fact that over one and a half million British citizens voted to break away from the rest of the UK, the fact that a majority in Scotland's biggest city - Glasgow - backed independence, the fact that the Westminster establishment briefly thought this vote was lost is the reason for that.

    The leaders of the three UK parties are now promising significant constitutional change and not just for Scotland but for England, Wales and Northern Ireland as well.

    They have agreed on a timetable for giving more powers to the Scottish Parliament but are a long, long way from agreeing proposals. Alex Salmond may have lost this vote but he remains Scotland's First Minister. He's unlikely to merely accept what is offered up by his opponent.

     
  63.  
    @faisalislam 08:25: Faisal Islam, Sky News Political Editor

    Faisal Islam, Sky News Political Editor tweets: ...So did one stray opinion poll in the Sunday papers change via panic and GBrown, course of the United Kingdom constitutional settlement...

     
  64.  
    08:23: FINAL RESULT

    The final result is in:

    • 1,617,989 (45%) said Yes
    • 2,001,926 (55%) said No
    • Turnout was 84.5%
     
  65.  
    08:21: Breaking down the vote... James Cook Scotland Correspondent, BBC News

    Dundee, Glasgow, North Lanarkshire, and West Dunbartonshire said Yes. Everywhere else said No. #indyref #Scotland

     
  66.  
    08:19: HIGHLAND RESULT

    "No" wins by 87,739 to 78,069.

    That is 52.9% for "No" and 47.1% for "Yes"

    Total votes 165,808. Turnout was 86.9%.

     
  67.  
    Tweet @bbcscotlandnews 08:13: Get involved

    There have been nearly 160,000 tweets about the Referendum between 7am and 8am this morning. That's a dip of 15% on the previous hour.

    The most shared tweet in the last hour is from UK Prime Minister David Cameron. He tweeted: "Just as Scotland will have more power over their affairs, it follows England, Wales and N Ireland must have a bigger say over theirs."

    His account is also the most influential.

    Amongst the most shared photos are those of no supporters reacting to the results.

    You can join the conversation via #indyref, tweet or go to the BBC News page on Facebook.

     
  68.  
    David Mundell MP 08:10: Referendum reaction

    Scottish Conservative MP tweets: Was it only 24 hours ago that I was queuing up outside Moffat Town Hall to vote? As we have seen a long time in Scottish politics!

     
  69.  
    08:09: How the No side won

    Vanessa Barford examines how Better Together managed to win the Scottish independence referendum.

    No thanks
     
  70.  
    08:08: 'Business as usual' Douglas Fraser Business and economy editor, Scotland

    Clydesdale Bank statement: business as usual, with strong roots in Scotland.

     
  71.  
    08:03: Throws down the gauntlet Andrew Marr, broadcaster and journalist BBC News

    What started as a vote on whether Scotland would leave the UK has ended with an extraordinary constitutional revolution announced outside Downing Street by the Prime Minister.

    It throws down the gauntlet to the Labour party that we are going to see very big change coming and it had better come quickly.

    We always used to be told that if you laid all the economists in the world end to end they still wouldn't reach a conclusion and I think that could be said often about parliamentary committees and inquiries and commissions.

    Well it can't happen this time because it's not taking place in a sealed room with the Westminster parties, the old smug consensus, getting round an argument with each other as before.

    This is really taking place in a huge glass house, being watched by all the Scottish voters and by millions of people around the UK.

    What the Scottish shock has done is produce a constitutional revolution on a very, very tight timetable. Possibly the most exciting political story in my lifetime.

     
  72.  
    08:00: In Pictures

    Our picture gallery on the story of the day and night, from the polling stations to the reaction in George Square.

    George Square reaction
     
  73.  
    @chrisshipitv 07:58: Chris Ship, Deputy Political Editor, ITV News

    Chris Ship, Deputy Political Editor, ITV News tweets: I see the #indyref story is very quickly moving to England. I can imagine the reaction in Scotland to that is "what's new?"

     
  74.  
    07:57: Cameron: Key quotes

    David Cameron closed his statement by saying: "This referendum has been hard fought, it has stirred strong passions, it has electrified politics in Scotland and caught the imagination of people across the whole of our United Kingdom.

    "It will be remembered as a powerful demonstration of the strength and vitality of our ancient democracy."

     
  75.  
    07:53: The verdict from abroad

    The BBC's Diplomatic Correspondent Bridget Kendall reports on how nations around the world will react following a No vote on Scottish independence.

    Catalan campaigners
     
  76.  
    07:52: Hague appointment

    Just a reminder of another appointment made by David Cameron who said the leader of the Commons, William Hague, alongside a Cabinet committee, will draw up plans to allow English MPs to decide the outcome of laws that only apply to England.

     
  77.  
    07:50: Cameron: Key quotes

    "Now the debate has been settled for a generation, or as Alex Salmond has said: 'Perhaps for a lifetime'. So their can be no disputes, no re-runs, we have heard the will of the Scottish people.

    "Scotland voted for a stronger Scottish parliament backed by the strength and security of the United Kingdom and I want to congratulate the No campaign for that, for showing people that our nations really are Better Together.

    "I also want to pay tribute to Yes Scotland for a well-fought campaign and to say to all those who did vote for independence 'we hear you'."

     
  78.  
    07:48: Cameron: Key quotes

    Prime Minister David Cameron: "The people of Scotland have spoken and it is a clear result. They have kept our country of four nations together and like millions of other people I am delighted.

    "As I said during the campaign, it would have broken my heart to see our United Kingdom come to an end.

    "And I know that sentiment was shared by people not just across our country but around the world because of what we have achieved together in the past, and what we can do together in the future.

    David Cameron

    "So, now it is time for our United Kingdom to come together and to move forward.

    "A vital part of that will be a balanced settlement, fair to people in Scotland and importantly to everyone in England, Wales and Northern Ireland as well.

    "To those in Scotland sceptical of the constitutional promises that were made, let me say this: we have delivered on devolution under this government and we will do so again in the next parliament.

    "The three pro-Union parties have made commitments, clear commitments on further powers for the Scottish Parliament.

    "We will ensure that those commitments are honoured in full."

     
  79.  
    07:46: 'No means a landslide'

    Diane Abbott MP tweets: The 6 million strong city of London (& other cities) must get powers to parallel those being devolved to Scotland #indyref.

    British actor Simon Pegg tweets: Feel sad for those who campaigned hard for a Yes vote. Hopefully some meaningful change will come of this. It was by no means a landslide.

     
  80.  
    07:45: Voter turnout Gary Robertson BBC Radio Scotland

    Official turnout in #indyref verified as 84.6% #bbcgms.

     
  81.  
    07:43: Your emails from Australia

    Paul Gibbings from Melbourne wrote: "John Lennon would be happy, he wanted less countries not more. There needs to be an example set, the world needs to unify."

    Martin Cooper emailed: "Please let the vote result be a peaceful one without reprisals and animosity."

     
  82.  
    @jonsnowc4 07:41: Jon Snow, Channel 4 News

    Channel 4 News presenter tweets: Damp calm pervades Edinburgh... many I have spoken to, whether YES or NO, deeply mistrust Westminster's will to deliver promised reforms

     
  83.  
    07:39: UKIP reaction

    UKIP leader Nigel Farage tells BBC Radio 4's Today: "I'm writing to Scottish MPs to say please commit from today not to vote or debate at Westminster on English issues."

     
  84.  
    07:38: The Key Moment

    Watch the moment when it became official that Scotland had voted No in the independence referendum.

    Scotland votes No
     
  85.  
    07:35: Robinson analysis of Cameron Nick Robinson Political editor

    What is really new is not what he's saying about Scotland - it's what he's saying about England. Specifically a promise to bring in English votes for English laws - a Tory manifesto promise that he didn't deliver on and that there was no coalition agreement to which, in simple terms, means this: Within Westminster when there are matters being discussed which the Welsh Assembly has responsibility for or the Scottish Parliament or the Northern Ireland Assembly that those MPs for should not be allowed to vote in Westminster.

     
  86.  
    07:33: RBS statement Kamal Ahmed BBC Business editor

    Royal Bank of Scotland has given a statement to the BBC's business editor, Kamal Ahmed, it says: "The announcement we made about moving our registered head office to England was part of a contingency plan to ensure certainty and stability for our customers, staff and shareholders should there be a 'Yes' vote. That contingency plan is no longer required. Following the result it is business as usual for all our customers across the UK and RBS."

     
  87.  
    Magnus Gardham 07:32: Devolution move

    The editor of the Daily Herald tweets: Cameron announces @Glasgow2014 chair Lord Smith of Kelvin is to oversee the issue of devolution #indyref

     
  88.  
    07:31: Analysis Andrew Black Political reporter, BBC Scotland

    Now there's been a "No" vote, David Cameron used his speech to aim to show the UK government is immediately grabbing the initiative by announcing Lord Smith of Kelvin, a former BBC governor, to oversee the implementation of more devolution on tax, spending and welfare.

    He said draft legislation would be ready by January, as per the timetable laid out by Mr Cameron's predecessor as PM, Gordon Brown.

    Mr Cameron knows he has to move quickly, to avoid any accusation from the SNP - which of course is still forms Scotland's government - that his more powers pledge was a pre-referendum bribe.

     
  89.  
    07:30: Market reaction

    Mike Amey, managing director and portfolio manage at bond trader PIMCO, tells Today he expects the markets to open higher as a result of the Scottish referendum result. "It will be back to the data for our traders and what the Bank of England will do [on interest rates]."

     
  90.  
    07:26: The scene in Edinburgh Andrew Kerr BBC News

    Dawn is breaking here at the Scottish Parliament. It's a misty, murky autumn morning. Yes supporters are still gathering outside Holyrood.

     
  91.  
    Tweet @bbcscotlandnews 07:24: Get involved

    There have been nearly 180,000 tweets about the Referendum between 6am and 7am this morning. That's up 10% on the previous hour.

    The top tweet in the last hour is from BBC News: "Scotland has rejected independence, #indyref results confirm" retweeted over 6,500 times.

    One of the most shared photos is of a no supporter, wearing a union flag hat and shirt.

    You can join the conversation by using #indyref, tweet @BBCPolitics or go to the BBC News page on Facebook.

     
  92.  
    07:20: UK is stronger - Miliband

    Labour leader Ed Miliband tweets: Our United Kingdom is stronger today than it was yesterday.

     
  93.  
    07:18: 'Settled for a generation' Chris Mason Political correspondent, BBC News

    PM says independence question in Scotland has been 'settled for a generation, or, as Alex Salmond said, perhaps a lifetime.' #bbcindyref

     
  94.  
    07:14: Analysis Brian Taylor Political editor, Scotland

    David Cameron says there is clear support for maintaining the union. It is time now for the UK to come together - with a "balanced settlement" which is fair to Scotland and elsewhere in the UK.

    He says the debate on independence has been "settled for a generation": the settled will of the Scottish people. That latter a conscious echo of words delivered by John Smith about devolution.

    Prime Minister David Cameron

    Now, he says, there is a chance to change the way the British people are governed. Once more, emphasis on all the constituent parts of the UK.

    Insists the promises for Scotland will be delivered "in full". Lord Smith of Kelvin to oversee that process. England, Wales and NI must have bigger say too. A new and fair settlement across the UK.

    More powers for Wales. Make devolved institutions function effectively in NI. But now England must be heard. In short, he wants a decisive answer on West Lothian - with English votes on English issues. William Hague to work on that. To the same timetable as the Scottish action.

    Challenges: can it be done to the timetable; will not some, perhaps many, at Westminster want to move on to other issues; will not the UK parties be focused on fighting the General Election rather than agreeing on the constitution.

     
  95.  
    07:12: Lord Smith appointment

    David Cameron says Lord Smith of Kelvin, chairman of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games, is to oversee the process of further devolution.

    Draft laws on new powers for Scotland will be published by January, he adds.

     
  96.  
    07:11: Cameron: Devolution pledge

    "We have delivered on devolution and we will do so in the next parliament," adds the prime minister.

    Prime Minister David Cameron

    "We will ensure that those commitments are honoured in full."

     
  97.  
    07:09: Cameron: Referendum was right

    "It was right that we respected the SNP's majority in Holyrood and gave the Scottish people the right to have their say," adds the prime minister outside Downing Street.

    "There can be no disputes. No re-runs. We have heard the settled will of the Scottish people."

    England, Wales and Northern Ireland "should be able to vote" on tax, spending and welfare, he continues.

     
  98.  
    07:08: Cameron 'move forward'

    David Cameron says: "It is time for our United Kingdom to come together and move forward."

    The prime minister credits both sides of the debate for a "hard fought campaign".

     
  99.  
    07:07: Breaking News

    David Cameron says: "The people of Scotland have spoken and it is a clear result. They have kept our country of four nations together and like millions of other people I am delighted."

     
  100.  
    07:06: George Square tensions Ken Macdonald BBC Scotland Science Correspondent

    Police trying to defuse a standoff in Glasgow's George Square between remaining Yes campaigners and a handful of No supporters waving union flags.

    George Square after No vote
     

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