Referendum result ‘at 6.30am’ the next day

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THE result of next year’s independence referendum is likely to be declared around 6.30am or 7.30am the day after the vote, according to election managers.

Counting of the ballot ­papers will begin all over Scotland immediately after the polls close on September 18.

Even in Argyll and Bute, where election counts ­normally take place the following day because of problems in retrieving ballot boxes in the dark from some islands, ­special transport arrangements or “satellite” counts are being planned.

A briefing paper by ­Elections Scotland explains that local counts will take place in each of Scotland’s 32 local authority areas and the total ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ votes in each area are expected to be announced locally before the national result is declared.

However, the paper – by Chief Counting Officer (designate) Mary Pitcaithly – warned the timing of the declaration of the result could still depend on the weather, with some ballot boxes travelling on boats or aircraft.