09/19/2014 12:21 EDT | Updated 06/16/2017 01:00 EDT

Scotland referendum: 'No' vote prevails, BBC and SkyNews report

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With 26 of 32 regions in Scotland reporting, British media outlets have forecast a victory for the No side in the Scottish referendum.

Glasgow, the biggest city to report to date, put a dent in the lead but the overall total still stood at 54 per cent for the No campaign.

The question on the ballot asked voters simply: "Should Scotland be an independent country?" and a record number of voters were expected to turn out for their chance to weigh in on the question. 

Local officials said that more than 4.2 million people registered to cast a ballot in the referendum, which represents roughly 97 per cent of all eligible voters. Included in those eligible to vote were people as young as 16.

Alex Salmond, the first minister who led the independence campaign, made a final effort to woo voters Wednesday, saying the referendum represented an "opportunity of a lifetime." 

British Prime Minister David Cameron made a case for a No vote days earlier, warning that a vote for independence would be "forever" and urging voters to choose to stick together.

Scotland has a population of just over 5 million, a small proportion of the more than 64 million people in the broader U.K.