A 2014 article in the Telegraph noted that

The chief counting officer for the Scottish independence referendum has confirmed there can be no national recount even if the result is close.

But Mary Pitcaithly has said that local counting officers in each of Scotland’s 32 councils can consider “reasonable” requests for recounts in their respective areas where genuine concerns have been raised.

All votes are counted locally and concerns about the count must be resolved locally. In addition, no recount can be ordered in a particular area after its result has been declared.

In accordance with the legislation governing the referendum, after a local declaration has been made, the counting officer concerned must seal all ballot papers and other related materials.

They are not permitted to open sealed papers and this can only be done on the orders of the Court of Session or a sheriff principal.

Based on that, it appears that any local recounts would have left a paper trail. So, were any such local recounts conducted? If so where?

1 Answer 1


Apparently there were none; from the official report on the referendum:

No recounts were requested locally and given the work undertaken by COs and their staff and observations undertaken in count centres by Commission representatives it is clear that all local totals were accepted by those agents present locally. Once the local results were accepted then it followed that acceptance of each of the 32 local counting area results, once totalled, led to a translation of local confidence in the local total into confidence in the national result.

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