The Scottish Parliament has delayed its independence referendum vote

Tom Peck
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon had been addressing Holyrood's referendum debate before the attack at Westminster occurred: Getty

Holyrood’s vote on a second independence referendum has been postponed until next week, after the debate on the matter was curtailed in the wake of Wednesday’s terrorist attack at Westminster.

The Scottish parliament vote on whether to formally request a second referendum will now take place on Tuesday 28 March, the day before Theresa May intends to trigger Article 50 and begin the UK’s exit from the European Union.

The Scottish Parliament had been close to the end of its debate on Wednesday afternoon, eventually suspending its sitting at around four o clock.

On Thursday morning it was decided not to return to the debate.

If the SNP win the vote next Tuesday, as they are expected to do so, it will mean she is likely to receive a formal request to grant Scotland a second referendum on independence in the evening before she sends a letter to Brussels to notify the EU of the UK’s intention to leave.

The Prime Minister is due to visit Scotland before triggering Article 50 , as part of a UK tour to the three devolved countries.

Moments after Holyrood was suspended on Wednesday, Ms Sturgeon said: "My thoughts, as I'm sure the thoughts of everybody in Scotland tonight, are with people caught up in this dreadful event.

"My condolences in particular go to those who've lost loved ones.

"My thoughts are with those who've sustained injuries and we all feel a sense of solidarity with the people of London tonight."