The clause requires Returning Officers to take reasonable steps to begin the count by 2am. That is a clear duty and goes further than the existing legislation which requires them only to make arrangements for the counting of votes "as soon as practicable" after the close of poll. It is clear in our view that when the amendment becomes law, it would not allow for Returning Officers simply to excuse themselves from starting the count within the 4 hour period set out. Of course, the legislation cannot guarantee overnight counts everywhere - there might for example be some constituencies with challenging geography where, despite reasonable steps being taken, it is impossible to begin the count by 2am. Or there might be unforeseen circumstances on the night. But the formulation is much clearer about what is expected than the current legislation, and Returning Officers will not be able to dismiss the duty lightly.
I can't make up my mind whether that is encouraging or not! I think if I was a Returning Officer I'd be very confused.