Scottish Independence: pro-Union leaders 'joint commitment'

Scottish parliament building The three main pro-Union parties may jointly promise more power for the Scottish parliament

Leaders of the main unionist parties in Scotland are preparing to issue a joint statement promising more power for Holyrood, the BBC understands.

Johann Lamont, Willie Rennie and Ruth Davidson could share a platform as early as next week.

Sources say it will not be a formal pact, but will indicate a ''direction of travel'' from Labour, the Liberal Democrats and the Conservatives.

The Scottish government said only independence guaranteed more powers.

Each of the main pro-Union parties have separately promised to devolve more power to Holyrood if there is a "No" vote in September's independence referendum.

Earlier this month, the Conservatives published the findings of their fiscal commission, which recommended Scotland be able to set its own income tax bands and rates while the tax free allowance remained reserved to Westminster.

Labour has said it would devolve three quarters of the 20p tax rate and give Holyrood control over housing benefits.

The Lib Dems want Holyrood to raise 50% of the money it spends and have control over income, capital gains and inheritance tax.

While the parties disagree on detail, sources say they are now sufficiently close to share a platform at which they will commit themselves to greater devolution.

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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.  
    23:17: The end of a remarkable day Steven Brocklehurst BBC Scotland news website

    That's all from the live page updates for today. We will be back at 08:00 to cover the latest developments in this story.

     
  2.  
    23:15: End of a dream

    The Daily Record went with "the dream shall never die", but The Times wrap instead declares it's the "end of a dream".

    The Times
     
  3.  
    23:14: Labour hits out at Cameron

    Labour's shadow attorney general, Emily Thornberry, tells the BBC's Scotland 2014 that David Cameron is "trying to hitch a whole lot of other stuff" to plans for more Scottish devolution, including English votes for English laws in the Commons.

    "It is simply not possible to stitch these two things together," she argues, and accuses the prime minister of a "pretty glib, pretty party-political and pretty facile analysis of what needs to happen next".

     
  4.  
    23:13:

    Here is tomorrow's Scotsman front page.

    scotsan
     
  5.  
    23:06: Stick to timetable

    Former chancellor and Conservative politician Kenneth Clarke told BBC News the prime minister and the parties at Westminster would want to stick to the timetable given to Scotland for more powers.

    He said: "Once everyone has calmed down we will get back to delivering to the Scottish people the promises made in this referendum."

     
  6.  
    23:00: Throwing in the towel

    Scotland's Daily Telegraph: Alex Salmond "throws in the towel".

    Scottish Daily Telegraph
     
  7.  
    22:57: Thanks Alex

    Huw Silk: Some #indyref Yes fans outside Scottish Parliament tonight to arrange candles spelling out "Thanks Alex" #Salmond

    Yes supporters
     
  8.  
    22:56: 'Impeccable timing'

    Former SNP MSP Andrew Wilson said Alex Salmond had chosen his time to leave with his usual impeccable timing.

    "I think his second retirement should be more rewarding than his first," he said.

    andrew wilson
     
  9.  
    22:54: Trouble in Glasgow

    A Police Scotland spokesperson confirms three arrests have been made so far following trouble across Glasgow this evening. Investigations are under way and officers will be conducting enquiries retrospectively which could lead to further arrests.

    Following rumours on Twitter of a stabbing on Buchanan Street, Police Scotland say no-one has given them any information on such an incident.

     
  10.  
    22:53: 'Sad to see him go'

    Former special adviser to Alex Salmond, Stephen Gethins, told Scotland 2014 that his ex-boss had a massive impact of politics.

    He said: "He is still the most popular politician in Scotland after seven years in government. I am really personally sad to see him go."

     
  11.  
    22:49: Salmond success

    Professor of public policy at Edinburgh University James Mitchell told BBC News that Alex Salmond had taken the SNP from a "fringe party to a party of government".

     
  12.  
    Email: haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk Get involved

    Fiona Watson: As a yes voter I accept the result and will play my part in taking the decision forward. However let's not forget the amount of yes voters and the promises that have been given to Scotland and the timescales. If for any reason Westminster fall short on the vows they made then all bets are off. The possibility of a future referendum cannot be dismissed.

    Geoff Tompson: I confess to being pro-UK sticking together but, had Scotland chosen to split, that would have been the population's democratic right. Though I didn't accept Alec Salmond's views, he did create an environment within the UK that I hope will genuinely benefit us all by creating a fairer society for all our citizens. I'm therefore saddened that he has chosen to resign with his job unfinished. At the very least he should stay until the next General Election to ensure Westminster is held to account and to make sure it follows through on the promises it has made to the Scottish people. As an Englishman I want to be part of an inclusive UK that is fair for all. Alec Salmond has not yet failed, he has merely started a long overdue process to ensure that all UK citizens are fairly represented, I therefore hope he will reconsider his decision and that the SNP has the sense to back him for the benefit of all UK citizens, be they Scottish, Welsh, Northern Irish or English.

    Neil MacDonald: This has been a nasty campaign from start to finish, but what has been missed in all the rhetoric is this was a fight for the soul of our country. The quiet, dignified majority do not believe in separation. We demonstrate our national identity by our consideration and care for others, in particular our brothers and sisters in the rest of this island. The sickening scenes we are witnessing in George Square are not about a disenfranchised electorate, but are a result of the Pandora's's box which this campaign has opened.

    • Tonight's comments, tweets and texts have been produced by the BBC's Bernadette McCague, Amber Dawson, Andree Messiah and Kerry Alexander.
     
  13.  
    22:38: Triggered a debate Nick Robinson Political editor

    I don't think I have ever experienced a day quite like this.

    A vote to reject major constitutional change in one country has actually triggered a debate about major constitutional change in all the countries of the UK.

    And the man without whom all this might not have happened, Alex Salmond, has quit.

    When we analysis this vote, it wasn't about purely independence, about self-government, about national identity.

    In many ways it was treated by the electorate here as a referendum on the Westminster establishment, on the way power works in the United Kingdom today.

    And many people, No as well as Yes voters, were deeply unhappy.

     
  14.  
    22:31: Disunited Kingdom

    The Independent goes for "the disunited kingdom", looking at David Cameron, Ed Miliband and Alex Salmond.

    The Independent
     
  15.  
    Email: haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk 22:30: Join the conversation

    Andy from Wales: My family and I live in Wales and I in particular have been watching this campaign with huge interest. I have lots of friends and work colleagues who live in Scotland and voted yes for independence. I am glad Scotland decided to stay but am also proud of the 1.6 million Scottish people who voiced their opinion. As a country we now have to listen to the strong voice of those people despite it being a minority result for the yes campaign. I am very patriotic and proud to be Welsh but do not support any kind of independence for Wales I just don't think the country can stand on it's own two feet. We are a unique United Kingdom.

     
  16.  
    22:30: Queen's pledge

    The Daily Telegraph focuses on The Queen's "pledge to help reunite" the UK.

    daily telegraph
     
  17.  
    Email: haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk 22:29: Get involved

    Alan in Glasgow: Disgraceful scenes at George Square. Sums up our "Union" as we know it in Scotland. Wait for the hand wringing of Unionist politicians about the loyalist behaviour, but they haven't a problem accepting their votes!! Scotland's shame laid bare in front of a watching world.

     
  18.  
    Tweet @BBCScotlandnews 22:28: Get involved

    @supermavio tweets: Scenes in Glasgow make me wonder what kind of Scotland we will have in 10 years. I fear for my daughters generation #indyref

     
  19.  
    22:27: Sturgeon taking over?

    Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is tipped to replace First Minister Alex Salmond as SNP leader, by the Daily Star of Scotland.

    Daily Star
     
  20.  
    22:24: What now?

    There's a special edition of The Independent's i on Saturday newspaper - "What now for the UK?".

    i paper
     
  21.  
    22:23:

    Comedian Limmy tweets: I feel a lot more in common with No voters now, not less. Because that stuff in George Square, I know neither of us are that.

     
  22.  
    22:20: George Square

    Channel 4 correspondent Alex Thomson tweets: "There is no question that there was a minority out to cause trouble and the sectarian tinge to some chants and flags was clear to all."

     
  23.  
    22:18: Home rule

    The Daily Mail looks at what it all means for England.

    Daily Mail
     
  24.  
    22:14: Salmond's sword

    The Scottish Daily Express go with the headline "Salmond falls on his sword".

    Scottish Daily Express
     
  25.  
    22:10: Independence dream

    Tomorrow's Daily Record leads with First Minister Alex Salmond's "dignified promise" that the Scottish independence dream shall never die.

    Daily Record
     
  26.  
    22:03: Eastenders discusses No vote

    Tonight's episode of BBC soap Eastenders included a scene in which two characters discussed the No vote in the Scottish independence referendum.

    In a scene in the cafe, Tamwar Masood (Himesh Patel) says to Jay Brown (Jamie Borthwick): "It's nice the Scots did not forsake us. Although it got a bit desperate towards the end there, all that needy 'don't leave us' stuff from our side."

    eastenders

    Tamwar then tells Jay off for not having more to say on "Scotland deciding against independence".

    He says: "What could have been the biggest story in UK history in hundreds of years and you have nothing to say about it."

    Jay replies: "They voted No didn't they. So everything stays the same"

    The cast had filmed two scenes in advance to reflect both possible outcomes of the referendum.

    A post on the show's official Facebook page explained: "As EastEnders viewers are aware, the residents of Walford will often reference topical issues to reflect big moments that our audience are talking about.

    "As we knew the referendum was approaching, we filmed two different scenes to ensure that either outcome of the vote was covered."

     
  27.  
    Tweet @BBCScotlandnews 21:50: Get involved

    @DanielJones2291 tweets: I've always felt immensely proud to be Scottish. After looking at what is going on the Glasgow City Centre, today I am not. #NOTHANKS

     
  28.  
    Tweet @BBCScotlandnews 21:48: Get involved

    @joeheenan tweets: #GeorgeSquare At this time yesterday Scotland had hope. Now it has shame.

     
  29.  
    Tweet @BBCScotlandnews 21:36: Get involved

    @MichaelMacLeod1 tweets: Top marks to the cops for keeping the peace after things looked much more worrying earlier. They've got square in lockdown, all routes shut.

     
  30.  
    21:35: George Square latest

    A police statement said: "Officers continue to manage the situation and prevent further disruption. Most have now dispersed. Small group remains with police in attendance"

     
  31.  
    21:31: End of an era

    Political commentator John McTernan, who was political secretary to Tony Blair, told BBC News he was surprised that Alex Salmond resigned.

    He said: "It is the end of an era. This is what he came into politics to do. Nobody thought he would get an independence referendum, he got it and he lost it.

    "He lost it not narrowly. It was a big defeat. SNP heartlands such as Aberdeenshire where he has his seat, Perthshire, Moray, rejected independence. Paradoxically it would not have been so close if were not for Labour voters voting for independence."

     
  32.  
    Email: haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk 21:23: Get involved

    Carl: I am pleased with the result of the referendum but what a shame has Salmond resigned after what he has done for Scotland. I am sure the Scottish people do not want him to resign. He has done a fantastic job and should also hold his head up high on the results achieved on the referendum. He should stay and continue to be the great asset to Scotland that he is.

     
  33.  
    21:15: Salmond's 'great ability'

    Lib Dem MP Sir Menzies Campbell told BBC News: "I think there are 25% of the people in Scotland who believe in independence unequivocally.

    "Alex Salmond's great ability was to convert that 25% into nearly 50%.

    "There will always be people who believe in independence. It is a perfectly legitimate position. They won't go away. But I think most people are pretty well settled with the view that there should not be another referendum for a very long time, if ever."

     
  34.  
    21:08: George Square photos

    Pro-union protesters chant and wave Union Flags during a demonstration at George Square in Glasgow.

    Pro-union protestors chant and wave Union Flags during a demonstration at George Square in Glasgow
    Pro-union protestors chant and wave Union Flags during a demonstration at George Square in Glasgow
     
  35.  
    21:02: George Square

    Catriona MacPhee, STV journalist, tweets: Eerie scene in Queen St Station just now. Quiet & tense, with George Sq exit blocked, lined by riot police, & roar of chanting from outside.

     
  36.  
    20:57: Hannah on Prime Minister

    Actor John Hannah tonight told The One Show he would also like to see David Cameron resign.

    John Hannah

    Mr Hannah said: "It would be nice of him [David Cameron] to follow suit".

    "I think one of the things that we've learnt about this is that 97% of the electorate in Scotland voted because they weren't happy with Westminster."

     
  37.  
    20:52: George Square latest

    There are still angry scenes in George Square in the centre of Glasgow. The police are trying to contain a group of protesters, who are waving union flags and letting off flares.

    The BBC's Laura Kuenssberg said the ruckus in George Square is not a stand-off between Yes and No campaigners. "It is hoolies turning up who want a fight."

    george swuarwe
     
  38.  
    20:46:

    On a lighter, flakier note, Twitter user George Chambers posted this Alex Salmond tribute ahead of last night's results. It's what he calls "Salmond en croute".

    Salmon en croute
     
  39.  
    20:42:

    @sasflan tweets: People saying the yes campaigners are violent. I've just witnessed several saltires being burned & people being jumped. Good going Scotland

     
  40.  
    Email: haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk 20:36: Get involved

    Carl: I am pleased with the result of the referendum but what a shame has Salmond resigned after what he has done for Scotland. I am sure the Scottish people do not want him to resign. He has done a fantastic job and should also hold his head up high on the results achieved on the referendum. He should stay and continue to be the great asset to Scotland that he is.

     
  41.  
    20:32: Something to add Douglas Fraser Business and economy editor, Scotland

    Since filing my blog earlier, Alex Salmond has announced he's stepping down as SNP leader and First Minister, once a successor is elected.

    Asked about future strategy, he made clear to journalists that the "once in a generation" view was his and not a pledge which will bind his successor.

    In saying the SNP will "hold Westminster's feet to the fire" on new powers for Holyrood, he left little doubt that this form of torture could well include the prospect of another referendum.

    It came with a sting for his successor, whoever she may be - his observation that there's now a movement of 'Yessers' and other activists who are changing politics, and holding political leaders to account.

     
  42.  
    20:30: George Square Laura Kuenssberg BBC Newsnight

    To be clear, tonight's ruckus in George Sq is not a standoff btw Yes and No campaigners - it's hoolies turning up who want a fight

     
  43.  
    20:26: More powers

    Shadow Scottish Secretary Margaret Curran told BBC News there was a "deep disillusionment" with the way politics is conducted, particularly at Westminster.

    She said the proposals for devolution of powers in England would not slow down the promised change in Scotland.

    "The extra powers for the Scottish Parliament can be clearly implemented because we have been talking about them and planning them for some period now," she said.

    "The new proposals from the prime minister I don't think are thought through and he's not clear about them in the way that we are about Scotland."

     
  44.  
    Email: haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk 20:17: Your Salmond reaction

    James Adams: Whichever side of the debate people have found themselves on no one can deny the impact that Alex Salmond has had on Scottish politics. He managed to lead the SNP to a victory that broke the Holyrood system designed to stop a majority and take the country into a referendum that may well permanently change UK politics for better or worse.

    Alastair Milne: Nice of Salmond to "accept" the result, did he think he had an alternative? An arrogant egotist, won't be missed.

     
  45.  
    20:16: George Square Laura Kuenssberg Chief Correspondent

    Horrible end to day when people absorbing #indyref result but a bunch of people wanting a Friday night fight.

     
  46.  
    20:14: Glasgow leads call for change Nick Robinson Political editor

    Some will ask 'why on earth are politicians talking about constitutional change on the very day the Scottish people rejected independence?'

    The answer is clear and it is here in Glasgow. The people of this great city voted by a majority to leave the UK. The anger they feel at the way Westminster currently runs things is felt up and down what remains our United Kingdom.

     
  47.  
    20:08: Onto the streets

    The Guardian's Libby Brooks: Police doing a great job as Britannia-chanting crowds spill onto streets

    Libby Brook's pic aftermath of George Square
     
  48.  
    Email: haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk 19:55: Your views

    Chris in London: Can we now have a national debate about the issues raised during this campaign? How about a referendum for all UK citizens on the abolishment of Trident and the setting up of an oil wealth fund that would benefit all the citizens in the UK?

     
  49.  
    19:52: Worldwide reaction

    Reuters US News tweets: 1 in 4 Americans open to secession in urge to cut ties with Washington.

     
  50.  
    Email: haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk 19:47: Get involved

    Stewart Miles: Well done Scotland. You have moved British politics which thankfully will never be the same again. The English regions have regional authorities and Wales and N& Ire will have have more powers.

     
  51.  
    19:43: Yes city

    Actor Brian Cox, who is from Dundee, said it is the "Yes city of Scotland".

    "We are all very proud of that," he said

     
  52.  
    19:41: 'Head and shoulders above the rest'

    Scottish actor Brian Cox, who has been campaigning for a "Yes" vote, told BBC News that Alex Salmond was "head and shoulders above any other political leader in these islands".

    He said: "I was not always a fan but I certainly am now. I have watched him grown and be such a statesman as a result of this."

    Brian cox

    Mr Cox said he thought Alex Salmond would be "at the negotiating table" on the future of Scotland even if he is no longer first minister.

    He said: "He'll want to see that we don't get a bad deal. If you think about it, being leader and being head of negotiations on this so-called vow would be a difficult two jobs to do."

     
  53.  
    19:33: Dundee rally

    "Yes" campaigners in Dundee held a final rally today in the city. Dundee voted "Yes" to independence in yesterday's referendum, by the highest margin of any local authority in Scotland.

    Yes rally in Dundee
     
  54.  
    19:33: More on George Square

    A Police Scotland spokeswoman has said that there are approximately 100 people from each side in George Square in Glasgow.

    There has been some minor disorder which has been dealt with quickly, with no arrests.

    The square is closed to traffic with local diversions in place.

     
  55.  
    19:23: George Square latest Cameron Buttle BBC Scotland

    It is very tense in the square. It has calmed down a bit but is still very tense.

    Both sides have been throwing things, the police are in the middle trying to keep both sides apart.

    One side is singing Flower of Scotland and the other is singing Rule Britannia.

     
  56.  
    19:22: Telegraph 'barred'

    The Telegraph has published a video on their website which allegedly shows their reporter Ben Riley-Smith being "barred" from entering Alex Salmond's resignation press conference.

     
  57.  
    @BBCScotlandnews 19:06: Your views

    @s_ditchfield tweets: Glasgow feels very different tonight to the Glasgow of few months ago at commonwealth games #Glasgow2014 #whatashame

     
  58.  
    19:05: 'Extremely disappointing'

    Speaking on the George Square trouble, Lib Dem MP Sir Menzies Campbell said: "For people like me who are committed to the democratic process and who have valued the way in which this campaign has been conducted until now, it is extremely disappointing.

    "I hope that police will be able to make calm heads prevail and people will go home. The best possible thing would be a heavy shower in George Square. That is often a way of dispersing people who are ready to make trouble."

     
  59.  
    19:04: Weirs 'saddened' at Salmond resignation

    Chris and Colin Weir, the multi-millionaire lottery winners who helped bankroll the "Yes" campaign, said: "Whilst saddened at his decision, Alex Salmond has nothing to reproach himself for.

    weirs

    "He has energised our nation, not just in this campaign, but in all his years of service to Scotland. He has articulated the aspirations of a nation not just as a party leader but as Scotland's most successful first minister ever.

    "We wish him well and thank him for his part in making Scotland the confident, forward looking country it is today."

     
  60.  
    @BBCScotlandnews 19:01: Get involved

    @ScottWWright tweets: Horrible atmosphere building in Glasgow city centre as hardline side of Union "celebrates". Why oh why must it be like this? #infyref

     
  61.  
    18:59: Leaders condemn scenes

    The leaders of Scottish Labour and the Scottish Conservatives have condemned the scenes in Glasgow's George Square.

    Speaking to the BBC's Reporting Scotland, Ms Lamont said she hoped order was restored "as soon as possible" while Ms Davidson said: "We don't want to be seeing scenes like that on our streets."

     
  62.  
    18:59: Glasgow votes 'Yes'

    Yes campaigners and Loyalists who supported the Union have gathered in opposing protests in George Square in Glasgow, and it's fair to say the atmosphere is tense.

    Glasgow was one of four local authorities in Scotland to vote in favour of independence in yesterday's referendum.

    The others were Dundee, North Lanarkshire and West Dunbartonshire.

     
  63.  
    18:55: Salmond tweet

    First Minister Alex Salmond tweets: Heading home to Strichen. With love and thanks from Moira and I for all your kind messages of support.

    Alex and Moira Salmond
     
  64.  
    18:52: Salmond's second resignation

    This is the second time First Minister Alex Salmond has decided to stand down as SNP leader.

    Alex Salmond

    He first won the leadership of the party in 1990 before stepping down in 2000. Scotland's now Finance Minister John Swinney then took charge before Mr Salmond assumed office again in 2004.

     
  65.  
    18:51: More on George Square Cameron Buttle BBC Scotland

    The Loyalists have signs saying "Scotland is British". I see a flag that says Springburn/Derry Union up on the railings.

    Another flag says "Scotland is British, No surrender". There is lots of shouting of "this is our country".

     
  66.  
    18:50: Swinney 'respects' Salmond decision

    Scottish Finance Secretary John Swinney tells the BBC's Reporting Scotland that he respects Alex Salmond's decision to stand down.

    He repeats Mr Salmond's view that the referendum is a "once in a generation opportunity" and says the SNP "will work make sure that the commitments made in the referendum" by the UK parties about more powers are kept.

    "These have to be delivered and they have to be delivered within the timescale," he adds.

     
  67.  
    18:48: George Square latest Cameron Buttle BBC Scotland

    There is definitely evidence of riot-trained police officers now coming in.

    The trouble started very quickly with the charge from the Loyalist side. We believe it was a coordinated charge. It came from different parts of the square and different angles.

    You could see flares going off in different directions. You could see people running in and they had concealed Union flags within their coats and jackets which they pulled out.

     
  68.  
    18:45: 'Atmosphere changed' Cameron Buttle BBC Scotland

    I have been in George Square all day. It has ebbed and flowed, the crowd occasionally unpleasant, but about 20 minutes ago the atmosphere changed very noticeably.

    What I would describe as a Loyalist crowd turned up with lots of Union flags. All day the Saltire has been in evidence.

    There was a rush from the Loyalist side. Flares went up, the police came in, it all got very nasty for a while. the police have separated the crowds on either side of the square now.

     
  69.  
    @BBCScotlandnews 18:37: Get involved

    @Scanwich tweets: the only thing that's made me feel guilty for voting no is @AlexSalmond resigning #indyref #whatnow

     
  70.  
    18:35: Flares in the square

    Protesters have let off flares at the gathering in Glasgow's George Square.

    geirge square
     
  71.  
    18:33: Firecrackers in George Square

    Both campaigns are chanting slogans in George Square in Glasgow. A few firecrackers have been set off by both sides. Police are present and are trying to keep protesters separated.

    george square
     
  72.  
    18:32: More from George Square

    Here's another picture of the events at George Square.

    geroge
     
  73.  
    18:31: George Square protest

    This is the scene in Glasgow's George Square right now.

    Crowds of "No" supporters and "Yes" supporters are being kept apart by police.

    george square
     
  74.  
    18:30: 'Changed political landscape'

    Mr Swinney said Alex Salmond had changed the political landscape.

    He added: "The challenge for the next SNP leader and first minister will be to put the Westminster parties under pressure to deliver against the commitments that they made during the referendum campaign."

     
  75.  
    18:26: Swinney's 'deep appreciation'

    John Swinney said he wanted to make clear his "deep and profound appreciation" for what Alex Salmond did to get the party and the Yes movement to "this point".

    Mr Swinney said: "He took us into government in 2007 when all the pundits said we couldn't do it. He won a majority in 2011 when absolutely every commentator said it was an impossibility and then he delivered an independence referendum which commanded 1.6 million votes for independence yesterday.

    "Alex has earned the right to decide at what moment he wanted to stand down."

     
  76.  
    18:23: Rennie on Salmond

    The Sunday Herald's Scottish Political Editor Tom Gordon: Pretty brutal farewell statement from @willie_rennie on Salmond: "He has exhausted his political purpose."

     
  77.  
    18:22: Salmond's 'astonishing gains'

    Finance Secretary John Swinney told BBC Scotland that Alex Salmond had delivered "astonishing gains" for the SNP and "astonishing improvements" for Scotland.

    Mr Swinney, who was leader of the SNP before Mr Salmond, said: "I think that culminated in creating the opportunity for the people of Scotland to have the most engaged democratic decision we could have had about our future in the referendum yesterday, in which 85% of the public that were eligible to vote, participated. That was a great triumph for democracy and it was brought about by Alex Salmond."

     
  78.  
    18:15: Firm favourite

    Bookmakers have already priced Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon as the odds-on favourite to become the next SNP leader.

    Nicola Sturgeon

    Ladbrokes have Ms Sturgeon at 1/4, with Humza Yousaf next in line at 8/1. Alex Neil, Derek Mackay and Mike Russell follow at 10/1, with John Swinney priced at 16/1.

    William Hill is also offering odds - they price Ms Sturgeon at 1/3 and Mr Yousaf at 6/1.

     
  79.  
    18:14: STUC on Salmond

    Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC) General Secretary Grahame Smith said: "Alex Salmond has been a dominant figure in Scottish politics for over two decades.

    "Whatever you think of his politics you cannot deny his political achievements. The longest serving first minister; the first party leader to secure a Scottish Parliament majority; delivering a referendum on independence and increasing popular support for it.

    "His disappointment in not seeing the job through must be immense and, although a surprise to me, it is perhaps the right time for him to step aside as we now look to enhance Scottish devolution."

     
  80.  
    18:08: More from The Queen

    The Queen's statement from Balmoral concludes:

    "Now, as we move forward, we should remember that despite the range of views that have been expressed, we have in common an enduring love of Scotland, which is one of the things that helps to unite us all.

    "Knowing the people of Scotland as I do, I have no doubt that Scots, like others throughout the United Kingdom, are able to express strongly-held opinions before coming together again in a spirit of mutual respect and support, to work constructively for the future of Scotland and indeed all parts of this country.

    "My family and I will do all we can to help and support you in this important task."

     
  81.  
    18:06: Queen statement

    The Queen has issued a statement on the outcome of the referendum.

    It says: "After many months of discussion, debate, and careful thought, we now know the outcome of the referendum, and it is a result that all of us throughout the United Kingdom will respect," it reads.

    "For many in Scotland and elsewhere today, there will be strong feelings and contrasting emotions - among family, friends and neighbours. That, of course, is the nature of the robust democratic tradition we enjoy in this country.

    "But I have no doubt that these emotions will be tempered by an understanding of the feelings of others."

     
  82.  
    18:04: Queen statement

    The Queen said Scotland's vote to stay part of the UK was "a result that all of us throughout the United Kingdom will respect".

     
  83.  
    17:59: Harvie: Salmond changed political landscape

    Scottish Green Party co-convener Patrick Harvie said: "It's no secret that the Scottish Green Party and I haven't always agreed with Alex Salmond about a range of policy issues, but nobody in Scottish politics can doubt his commitment to the cause of Scottish independence, or the impact he has had, not only within Scotland, but also on a movement which still has the potential to reshape politics throughout these islands.

    "The first minister is 100% right to say that the aftermath of the independence referendum remains redolent with possibility, and that the incredible public engagement in our political process means that power must now lie with the public will, not with political parties in Westminster or Holyrood.

    "Despite our differences on a range of issues, I want to pay tribute to Alex Salmond for the role he has played in changing our political landscape. The future of Scottish, and of UK politics, could be entering a more open and creative period than we have known for many years.

    "If nothing else, Alex Salmond has been central to bringing us to that moment."

     
  84.  
    17:51: @HumzaYousaf

    Humza Yousaf SNP Member of the Scottish Parliament for Glasgow tweets: @AlexSalmond's legacy not only his own political achievements but thousands like me who've been inspired by him to become politically active

     
  85.  
    17:48: 'Outstanding parliamentarian' Andrew Black Political reporter, BBC Scotland

    Scottish Parliament Presiding Officer Tricia Marwick, who was elected as an SNP MSP before quitting the party to take up the politically-neutral Holyrood role, commented on Mr Salmond's decision to step down as first minister.

    She said: "Members from across the chamber will recognise the first minister as an outstanding parliamentarian and will join me in recognition of his substantial achievements and public service as an MP, MSP and as Scotland's longest-serving first minister.

    "He will bow out following the most remarkable national debate and democratic renewal of our nation."

     
  86.  
    Tweet @BBCScotlandnews 17:47: Get involved

    @HughWallace74 tweets: @AlexSalmond I am sad to see you go. This was never all about you but at the same time, without you we would have been nowhere. Thank you.

     
  87.  
    Email: haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk 17:45: Get involved

    Jim Daisley from Greenock texts: "Disappointed with the result but the 1.6 million people of Scotland standing up against Westminster, banking, big business and the media, and the politics of fear, should be proud. Congratulations and well done to Alex Salmond and I agree with his decision to resign and make way for new invigorated leadership.

     
  88.  
    17:44: Law Society on Salmond

    The president of the Law Society of Scotland, Alistair Morris, said Alex Salmond's place in "our nation's political history is assured".

    He said: "His achievements cannot be underestimated, not only as the longest-serving first minister and the first to obtain an overall majority at Holyrood, but also in securing a historic referendum on independence.

    "His passion for Scotland, his commitment to creating a fairer and more prosperous society and his formidable debating skills, both at Holyrood and Westminster, have been at the heart of Scottish politics for over 30 years. He has also been a proud and effective ambassador for Scotland on the world stage."

     
  89.  
    17:42: Miliband reaction

    UK Labour leader Ed Miliband said: "Alex Salmond has been a formidable frontline politician.

    "Whatever our disagreements, he always spoke his mind and he has always stood up for what he believed in.

    "Our task now is to make sure that we deliver on the timetable we've set out, to deliver extra powers to the Scottish Parliament, and we will deliver on that."

     
  90.  
    17:41: Salmond and the press

    The Guardian's Scotland correspondent Severin Carrell tweets: Newspapers not invited to @AlexSalmond resignation press conference: Financial Times; Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail, Daily Express. #indyref

     
  91.  
    17:39: Miliband on further powers

    Leader of the Labour party Ed Miliband tweets: We will deliver on our promise of further powers to Scotland on the timetable set out during the referendum campaign.

     
  92.  
    17:38: Your reaction to Salmond resignation

    Iain Murdoch from Fife emailed: Thank you Alex Salmond for all you have done to take Scotland forward to this point. You thoroughly deserve any rest you will now get. You have truly placed Scotland at the forefront of UK politics.

    Alvan Judson wrote: Just read your great news that Alex Salmond is resigning. Now he can go and spend his time watching re-runs of Braveheart until he, too, is blue in the face.

     
  93.  
    Email: haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk 17:36: Get involved

    Sam Wakerley: The only thing progressive about this whole debacle is the fact we gave Scotland the vote. True progress would be one world freedom passport, one currency, one renewable energy policy & every child having basic needs taken care of, with wants allocated based on effort and attainment. Call it UKIP call it SNP, call it BNP, nationalism is ugly.

    William Wright: And the lies have begun already. Millipede is scurrying back under the bench and retracting all his promises. I wonder how long it will be before Westminster fully rejects the lies they promised?

     
  94.  
    17:33: Cameron on Salmond

    David Cameron has said: "Alex is a politician of huge talent and passion. I respect and admire his huge contribution to politics and public life."

     
  95.  
    @William_Bain 17:33: William Bain MP

    Labour MP for Glasgow North East, William Bain, tweets: Huge aspect of #indyref level of public engagement with where power lies: why UK constitutional convention proposed by @Ed_Miliband is vital

     
  96.  
    17:32: Thanks from lesbian and gay charity

    Scotland's lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) equality charity, The Equality Network, said it wanted to say a "huge heartfelt thank you to Alex Salmond for significantly advancing LGBTI rights in Scotland".

    Policy coordinator Tom French said: "While more needs to be done, Alex Salmond should be incredibly proud of leading a government that has spoken out for LGBTI human rights, put in place some of the best hate crime legislation in Europe, and delivered one of the most progressive equal marriage laws in the world."

     
  97.  
    17:32: Analysis Norman Smith BBC Assistant Political Editor

    In some ways it is a shock decision but in other ways it was not really a shock given the scale of the defeat.

    In a way he must reflect that although he has improved the SNP's standing hugely - they are now in government in Scotland and they got about 45% of the vote last night - he is a man who has a lot of people who just will simply never vote for Alex Salmond. There is a limit to his appeal.

    He may take the view that he does not have that final ingredient that will get a majority of people in Scotland voting for independence.

    He says he only made the decision this morning and that probably indicates that it was the scale of the defeat that made him decide to go.

     
  98.  
    17:31: 'Tip our hats' to Salmond

    Sir Richard Branson tells the BBC News Channel that the referendum was "a great day for Britain", adding: "We should tip our hats to Alex Salmond for changing Britain for the better."

     
  99.  
    17:30: Lamont on Salmond

    Johann Lamont said Alex Salmond "should be proud of his career and not allow the manner of its ending to dominate his thinking.

    "There is no question that Nicola Sturgeon and he were a formidable team."

     
  100.  
    17:29: Salmond an 'immense figure'

    Scottish Labour leader Johann Lamont says: "Alex Salmond turned a minority party into a party of opposition, into a party of government, and was responsible for there being a referendum on Scotland leaving the United Kingdom.

    "He has undoubtedly been an immense figure in Scottish political history.

    "I do not detract from his achievements when I say that his love of Scottish independence sometimes blinded him to its consequences."

     

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