THE headline in Monday’s London’s Evening Standard ran: ‘Anti-Westminster’.

Alex Salmond has spoken 104 times in Commons since the General Election. It was, by all accounts, a slightly odd angle for the newspaper to take. Look at this politician, the article sneered, doing what his constituents have voted for him to do.

If the Gordon MP was supposed to have been embarrassed by the Standard’s story, it didn’t really work. By last night, Salmond had spoken in the chamber 124 times. The interventions and speeches mean that the former first minister is now the third most active MP in terms of contributions, just behind the Prime Minister and the leader of the House of Commons, Chris Grayling. Trailing behind Salmond in fourth and fifth places respectively are Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond and Chancellor George Osborne.

As of yesterday morning, other SNP MPs featured highly on the list, with Angus Brendan MacNeil, MP for Na h-Eileanan an Iar in ninth place with 71 contributions, SNP Westminster leader Angus Robertson 17th with 57 and Stephen Gethins in 35th with 39 contributions, despite making his maiden speech less than one month ago. Scottish Labour’s Ian Murray was 22nd with 49, and LibDem Alistair Carmichael is at 100th with 20.

Salmond said the SNP’s zeal would remain undimmed: “We have just won an astounding victory of 56 out of 59 MPs elected on a platform of making Scotland’s voice heard at Westminster.

“The Scottish lion – myself and my colleagues – will be roaring throughout this Parliament and those of a nervous disposition from the Labour and Tory benches will have to get used to it. We have a lot to say, but the real story here is why London MPs are saying so little as opposed to why Scottish MPs are contributing so much.”