I’ve just been looking at the estimated times that the different local authorities are expected to declare their results from the Independence Referendum vote on Friday morning.
Out of the 32 local authority areas in Scotland, 7 of them are hoping to declare their results by 2AM on Friday 19 September, a further 18 are estimating that they will declare their results between 2:30 and 3:30. 6 are expecting to declare by 5am and one is not expecting to declare until 6am.Given the geography of Scotland you would forgiven for thinking that maybe Highland Council with its 11,000+ square miles would be late declaring, having to get ballot boxes back from far flung locations but Highland are actually expecting to declare their results at around 4AM.
Oddly it is Aberdeen City Council who have an electorate of 164,000 (ish*) in a tiny area of about 64 square miles, are not expecting to declare their results until 6am on Friday. Their larger neighbour, Aberdeenshire Council with an area well over 2000 square miles and an electorate of 194,000 (ish*) are estimating a 3AM declaration.
Rumour is that Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire Council were supposed to be counting together at the Aberdeen Exhibition & Conference Centre on Thursday night / Friday morning, but Aberdeen City Council, decided that they wanted to count alone and moved their count to Robert Gordon University.
Obviously it is not possible to say that any council will declare their results at a given time and the PA page does say that the times ‘can only be taken as a rough guide‘. With this in mind I asked Aberdeen City Council Elections office if they could give me an estimate of time and they have said that their personal guess is around 6am but it is impossible to say.
Aberdeen City is currently a ‘tough to call’ authority where the vote could go either way, this could have something to do with the possible late declaration. Counts and recounts being called by the Yes & No camps. What ever the reason it could be that Aberdeen City Council are the authority that makes or breaks the union on Friday morning.
For a very detailed map of all the authorities and likely results have a look at The Scottish Referendum Data Map.
*I’m basing the electorate figure on what Aberdeen City & Aberdeenshire Councils declared for the May European elections. The Independence Referendum electorate will obviously be higher because of the 16 & 17 year olds being able to vote.