HOLYROOD has “overwhelmingly” rejected the hard Brexit being pursued by Theresa May, the First Minister said last night, after MSPs voted almost 3-to-1 against triggering Article 50.

Nicola Sturgeon said the vote sent a “clear signal” the UK Government “should now heed Scotland’s voice and react positively” to her plan for a bespoke Scottish deal on Brexit.

SNP Brexit minister Michael Russell, who meets UK Brexit Secretary David Davis in London today to discuss Ms Sturgeon’s proposal to keep Scotland in the EU single market, said the UK government had offered “nothing” so far.

He said: “This vote is a key test of whether Scotland's voice is being listened to and whether our wishes can be accommodated within the UK process.

"There is still time for the UK Government to recognise the existence and importance of devolution, the views of this Parliament and the clear, democratically expressed voice of the people of this country - but that time is running out.”

Although the Holyrood vote had no legal effect, the subject matter produced a heated debate, and exposed deep divisions within Labour.

Despite UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn ordering MPs to back the Bill on Article 50 at Westminster this week, his Scottish leader Kezia Dugdale ordered her MSPs to oppose the triggering of Article 50, arguing it left too many unanswered.

Three pro-Corbyn Labour MSPs - Neil Findlay, who was his Scottish leadership campaign manager, Elaine Smith and Richard Leonard - then rebelled against the whip in order to support Article 50, putting themselves in the same camp as the Scottish Tories on the final vote.

Mr Findlay said he refused to support the SNP position, because the SNP “never” wanted to trigger Article 50, despite the democratic majority UK vote for Brexit.

He said: “I did not vote with the Tories on anything. If they came to the same position that’s up to them. I was against the SNP for very clear principled reasons.”

MSPs voted 90 to 34 for an SNP motion saying the EU Withdrawal Bill should not proceed which incorporated a Green amendment complaining about the UK government’s action.

The Conservatives accused SNP ministers of "grievance politics" and "weekly threats" about another vote on independence, and said there was ample opportunity to engage positively in the Brexit process.

Pro-Brexit Tory MSP Ross Thomson also complained the votes of 1m Scots who voted to Leave were "airbrushed out of the picture altogether".

Scottish LibDem leader Willie Rennie said the vote was "a sign that the Tories cannot be allowed to get away with a hard Brexit unchecked", not a green light for independence.

A UK Labour spokesman said: “This is a matter for the Scottish Labour Party.”