It's been a long night for me, staying up to witness the people of Scotland vote to stay a part of the United Kingdom. I believe it is the first time in history that a country has rejected independence having been given the chance through a national vote. I am tired but I will go to work with a spring in my step today.
The question has been handled hugely impressively in Scotland in a mature debate that almost every inhabitant has participated in wholeheartedly, by-and-large with complete respect for the viewpoint of others. The size of the gap (around 10 points) should ensure that Nationalists will respect the majority decision and Scotland will move on part of the Union. Alex Salmond has just acknowledged that with good grace although his dream clearly lives on. They will, of course, get extra powers and will declare a victory of sorts nonetheless as they continue to effectively govern Scotland from a stronger position than before.
This should spell the end of independence in my homeland for a generation at least and I am delighted about that. I was born in a United Kingdom and I want to die in one. I am proud of my Scottish heritage and the place of my birth but I am British and England has been good to me and has always recognised Scotland's role in Union.
We should now see a backlash of sorts in England which should lead to further changes in government of the UK. The West Lothian Question must be dealt with once and for all. Westminster will also need to appease English Nationalists in some way in addition to that. I believe the Labour party comes out of this particularly poorly, especially the hapless Ed Milliband, although an independent Scotland would have dealt them an even bigger blow.
The SNP will be returned at the next General Election with an increased majority in Scotland although I won't be at all surprised if Salmond makes way for someone. I would be very confident of that if he had a really credible number two but that's not Nicola Sturgeon.