Scottish independence results: Alex Salmond spends referendum result night at home

First Minister had been expected to visit Aberdeen count

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Alex Salmond decided to spend the night of Scotland’s historic referendum at home in Aberdeenshire rather than attending his local count – as sources indicated the area was poised to return a vote against independence.

The First Minister had been expected to visit the count at the Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre before travelling on to Edinburgh for a press conference on Friday morning, where he hoped to usher in a “day of celebration” on the first day of an independent Scotland.

But last night the SNP said he would spend the night at his home in Strichen, leading some commentators to speculate that he expected the Yes campaign to lose the referendum and did not want to be seen in public until the following morning.

The local Liberal Democrat MP, Sir Malcolm Bruce, said last night that Mr Salmond’s absence “tells you everything you need to know” about him. “It’s all about Alex Salmond. Alex Salmond will not come anywhere if he has not got a triumphant accolade around him and something to crow about. He will just crawl away quietly, as he has done in the past when things don’t work out,” he said.

However, the SNP said that Mr Salmond had never intended to attend the count and had not changed his mind during the course of the evening.