{"JP":[ {"NewsSection":{"name":"scotland","detaillevel":"full", "Articles": {"count":25,"detaillevel":"full","articlesList":[ {"article": { "url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/scotland-s-weather-m80-closed-as-heavy-snow-causes-havoc-for-commuters-1-4374316","id":"1.4374316","articleHeadline": "Scotland’s weather: M80 closed as heavy snow causes havoc for commuters","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487850834000 ,"articleLead": "

Stranded vehicles forced the closure of sections of the M80 today after heavy snow caused major traffic problems during the morning rush hour.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374531.1487850810!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Live traffic cameras on the M80 show the impact Storm Doris has had. Picture; Traffic Scotland"} ,"articleBody": "

The motorway was shut northbound at junction five (Auchenkilns) near Cumbernauld and southbound from junction nine (Bannockburn), south of Stirling.

Snow was also reported to have hampered drivers on other main routes, including the M8 between Newhouse and Livingston, and the M90 in Fife and Perth and Kinross.

BEAR Scotland, which maintains major roads in the area, said: “Conditions continue to be challenging on the M80, M90 and A9, and we are targeting resources in these areas.

“Prevailing conditions are causing significant traffic delays on the M80 around Castlecary and A9 at Auchterarder.

“Teams are currently on these routes dealing with the conditions.”

Traffic information firm Waze said drivers were taking up to four hours to travel between Bannockburn and Banknock on the M80, which normally takes five minutes.

Storm Doris has triggered an amber - “be prepared” - severe weather warning until 6pm for most of central Scotland, with a lesser yellow - “be aware” - warning for much of mainland Scotland north to Aberdeenshire.

They will be followed by an ice warning tonight for the whole of Scotland apart from Shetland.

Up to 15cm of snow is expected to fall, and double that above 300m.

Then, from 6pm, widespread ice and up to 3cm of further snow above 150m is forecast.

In the Highlands, the A9 was passable only with care at the Slochd Summit due to swirling snow.

The Forth Road Bridge was closed to high-sided vehicles.

In the Borders, all school transport has been cancelled.

Storm Doris battered parts of England, with the Port of Liverpool announcing its closure following a 100mph gusts.

Winds of 79mph were recorded in north wales.

Separate warnings for gales in the far north and heavy rain in the far south of Scotland, and across the west coast on Saturday, have also been issued.

Superintendent Fraser Candlish of Police Scotland said: “With a substantial risk of travel disruption due to the weather, motorists should consider whether their journey is absolutely necessary.”

A Met Office spokesman said: “Accumulations of 10 to 15cm are likely quite widely, with 20 to 30cm falling on hills above 300 metres.

“This will lead to disruption to transport and perhaps power supplies.

“As Storm Doris moves eastwards across central parts of the UK on Thursday a spell of heavy snow is expected on its northern flank.

For the yellow warning area, the spokesman said: “Snow accumulations of 5 to 10cm are expected on some hills with 2 to 5cm possible to lower levels to the north of the Central Lowlands.

“In addition, strong winds are expected to develop with gusts of 50 to 60 mph.

“This will result in drifting of the snow and blizzard conditions over high ground.

“Associated heavy rain at lower levels will be an additional hazard.

“The combination of snow, strong winds and heavy rain is likely to lead to disruption to transport networks and perhaps power supplies.”

A yellow warning for heavy rain has also been issued for the Highlands and west coast for Saturday. Up to 75mm is forecast between midnight and 9pm, which the Met Office could disrupt travel and cause flooding.

Commuters had an average journey of over 2 hours and 40 minutes on the M80 as a result of the weather.

200 Voices: find out more about the people who have shaped Scotland

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "ALASTAIR DALTON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374531.1487850810!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374531.1487850810!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Live traffic cameras on the M80 show the impact Storm Doris has had. Picture; Traffic Scotland","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Live traffic cameras on the M80 show the impact Storm Doris has had. Picture; Traffic Scotland","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374531.1487850810!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374201.1487832821!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374201.1487832821!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The amber warning area has been extended to cover more of eastern Scotland. Picture: Met Office","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The amber warning area has been extended to cover more of eastern Scotland. Picture: Met Office","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374201.1487832821!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374532.1487850812!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374532.1487850812!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Commuters have struggled following the arrival of the storm. Picture; Traffic Scotland","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Commuters have struggled following the arrival of the storm. Picture; Traffic Scotland","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374532.1487850812!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/5-of-the-best-dog-walking-routes-in-edinburgh-1-4374637","id":"1.4374637","articleHeadline": "5 of the best dog walking routes in Edinburgh","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487851237000 ,"articleLead": "

EDINBURGH is a great city for dog owners. There is a whole variety of parks, nature reserves and beaches for dogs and owners to visit.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374636.1487850400!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The Hermitage of Braid is a popular dog-walking spot. Picture: Jon Savage/TSPL"} ,"articleBody": "

In order to find out which places are the best, we asked a professional dog walker, Andrea Beveridge of Four Seasons Dog Walking, to name her favourites.

Here is her selection of idyllic locations where you and your dog can enjoy a walk together.

The Hermitage of Braid

This lovely park takes its name from the Old Hermitage House, and has been designated as a local nature reserve. There are plenty of paths for you and your dog to explore, through woodland, scrubland and grassland. The Braid Burn is particularly picturesque on a sunny day, and a gentle stroll to the observatory is always pleasant.

You may spot some of the local wildlife on your walk – green woodpeckers, herons, kestrels and kingfishers are all known to inhabit the Hermitage.

The woodland is a fantastic place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city. There have been trees on this site for over three hundred years, with some of the older trees reaching a height of forty metres. Local species abound, including beech, ash and sycamore.

The Hermitage is also home to Blackford Hill, which offers some stunning views of the city and the surrounding countryside.

READ MORE: 5 of the best woodland walks in Edinburgh

Calton Hill

This is one of Edinburgh’s most photographed spots, and is a part of the city’s UNESCO World Heritage Site. The hill is dominated by an unfinished building, originally known as the “National Monument”, which was initiated in 1816, a year after Napoleon was defeated at Waterloo. The monument was supposed to be a replica of the Parthenon in Athens, but funds soon ran out and the project was never completed. The monument became known as “Edinburgh’s shame”, but despite being incomplete it is still rather impressive.

From the grass-covered slopes of the hill, you can see all across the city, and up towards Arthur’s Seat. The hill can be easily accessed from the centre of town, and is not near any main roads, so you can let your dog off the lead if you wish.

Colinton Dell

This steep-sided gorge is sheltered from the worst of the elements, making it an excellent habitat for Scottish wildlife. The path through the Dell goes alongside the Water of Leith, between Colinton Parish Church and Slateford. Colinton used to be a country village, before it was swallowed by the expanding city of Edinburgh.

The Dell covers an area of 25 acres, encompassing mature and ancient woodland. Many birds and animals call the Dell their home, including amphibians, voles, stoats and, from time to time, roe deer.

The walkways go past the Redhall Mill and Kate’s mill, where people say Scotland’s first bank notes were made.

Colinton Dell is ideal for dog-walking, as you are likely to come across the same friendly faces each time you visit.

Cammo Estate

Just on the edge of the city, there are 85 acres of woodland and grassland just waiting to be discovered. The Cammo Estate was given to the National Trust for Scotland in 1975, after the House’s final resident, Percival Maitland-Tennent, passed away. However, there was a fire in 1977, which only left the outer walls of the house intact.

Trees and plants have been growing here for centuries. Botanists will be interested to know that there are some plants here that have limited distribution in Scotland, making the estate a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation. There are also some badger setts on the estate, so if you are lucky you may spot one.

Local residents are very fond of the estate, and enjoy the chance to experience the changing of the seasons, which the city does not always offer.

READ MORE: Best forest camping locations in Scotland

Currie Reservoirs

Edinburgh’s reservoirs are located in the Pentland Hills Regional Park, which provides an excellent place to walk your dog. As well as a network of well-used paths, there is also a handy coffee van for refreshments.

If you begin at the Harlaw House Visitor Centre, and follow the squirrel way-markers, you can follow a route around the Harlaw Reservoir. You can see the glinting waters of the reservoir through the trees, and take in some incredible views of the surrounding landscape.

For a longer route, you can take the past to Black Springs along the side of Threipmuir Reservoir, which loops back into the woodland.

Keep an eye out for the stoats and voles who live in the park, and the interesting rock formations underfoot.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "MADDY SEARLE"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374636.1487850400!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374636.1487850400!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The Hermitage of Braid is a popular dog-walking spot. Picture: Jon Savage/TSPL","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The Hermitage of Braid is a popular dog-walking spot. Picture: Jon Savage/TSPL","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374636.1487850400!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/msps-hear-first-hand-from-edinburgh-s-homeless-community-1-4374516","id":"1.4374516","articleHeadline": "MSPs hear first-hand from Edinburgh’s homeless community","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487846646000 ,"articleLead": "

A GROUP of MSPs has met with Edinburgh’s homeless community at the Streetwork crisis centre to explore how people are accessing homelessness services in the city.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374524.1487846820!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Staff and volunteers from homeless charity Streetwork, which provides 24-hour support across the city, met with MSPs. Picture: Rob McDougall/TSPL"} ,"articleBody": "

The aim is to help the Local Government and Communities Committee with forthcoming evidence sessions in relation to homelessness.

The Streetwork crisis centre, which is based in Edinburgh city centre, provides 24-hour support for people in need of emergency accommodation and vital services.

READ MORE: Gran builds a house with tablet for homeless Kenyan family

Committee deputy convener Elaine Smith said: “It’s incredibly important for us to hear from people who are currently facing a life on the streets in Edinburgh.

“As part of our research into homelessness in Scotland, we also want to hear from vulnerable people who are at risk of being homeless and how this could potentially be prevented.

“What we learn from this visit will help to shape the Committee’s work in scrutinising housing matters in the future.”

Jan Williamson from Streetwork said: “We are pleased to welcome the committee to our centre and to have the opportunity for our frontline staff and those who access our service to speak directly to MSPs.

“We have over 25 years’ experience of supporting those who are among the most vulnerable in Edinburgh and hope our knowledge will help the Committee in its work.”

READ MORE: Women’s Institute knit jackets for homeless dogs

As part of its research into homelessness, the Local Government and Communities Committee will also visit charities and legal advice services in Glasgow and Perth to gain an overall picture of the current housing system in Scotland.

The Committee will consider how best to take forward this work at evidence sessions in early March 2017.

200 Voices: find out more about the people who have shaped Scotland

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374524.1487846820!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374524.1487846820!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Staff and volunteers from homeless charity Streetwork, which provides 24-hour support across the city, met with MSPs. Picture: Rob McDougall/TSPL","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Staff and volunteers from homeless charity Streetwork, which provides 24-hour support across the city, met with MSPs. Picture: Rob McDougall/TSPL","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374524.1487846820!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/paolo-nutini-arrested-for-alleged-drink-driving-offence-1-4374519","id":"1.4374519","articleHeadline": "Paolo Nutini arrested for alleged drink driving offence","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487846456000 ,"articleLead": "

Pop star Paolo Nutini has been arrested in his home town for alleged road traffic offences.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374518.1487846433!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Paolo Nutini was arrested in his home town of Paisley\\n (Photo: Ferdy Damman/AFP/Getty Images)"} ,"articleBody": "

The 30-year-old singer, whose hits include Jenny Don’t Be Hasty, Candy and New Shoes, was arrested in Paisley, Renfrewshire, on Tuesday.

On Thursday the Daily Record reported that he had been charged with drink-driving.

A spokesman for Police Scotland said: “We can confirm that a 30-year-old man was arrested in Paisley on Tuesday February 21 in connection with alleged road traffic offences.

“A full report will be sent to the procurator fiscal.”

200 Voices: find out more about the people who have shaped Scotland

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374518.1487846433!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374518.1487846433!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Paolo Nutini was arrested in his home town of Paisley\\n (Photo: Ferdy Damman/AFP/Getty Images)","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Paolo Nutini was arrested in his home town of Paisley\\n (Photo: Ferdy Damman/AFP/Getty Images)","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374518.1487846433!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/bbc-announces-new-scottish-9-on-dedicated-new-30m-channel-1-4373347","id":"1.4373347","articleHeadline": "BBC announces new ‘Scottish 9’ on dedicated new £30m channel","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487846038000 ,"articleLead": "

The BBC is to create a new Scottish channel which will include an hour-long news programme featuring a mix of Scottish, UK and international news.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373346.1487846014!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "BBC director general Tony Hall has announced a new Scottish TV channel.."} ,"articleBody": "

Politicians of all parties and union leaders have welcomed news that the channel, which is due to start broadcasting in the autumn of next year, will see 80 jobs created for journalists.

The National Union of Journalists said the announcement, described by the BBC as the biggest single investment in broadcast content in Scotland in more than 20 years, was greeted with “massive relief” by its workforce in Glasgow when it was announced by director-general Tony Hall.

However, there was some disappointment that the BBC had rejected calls for a so-called “Scottish Six”, the long-standing SNP demand for an hour-long news bulletin to replace the existing arrangement of a UK news programme at 6pm on BBC One followed by Reporting Scotland.

The channel will be available from 7pm to midnight every evening and accessed via digital services such as Freeview, Sky, online and the iPlayer. The new news programme will be broadcast at 9pm on weekdays.

The BBC has also been urged to make sure that the new channel, which was proposed by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon in a speech at the Edinburgh International Television Festival two years ago, is properly resourced.

It will have a budget of around £30 million, £19m of which is extra funding for BBC Scotland, while a further £20m will be made available for the making of drama and factual programmes in Scotland for the UK-wide network.

An additional £1.2m has been allocated to Gaelic channel BBC Alba, taking its budget to £20m, which will allow weekend news bulletins to be broadcast. Around £11m of the budget for the new channel will come from programmes currently made for BBC Two in Scotland.

Reporting Scotland and other Scottish opt-outs such as the soap opera River City and the countryside programme Landward will remain on BBC One. But some Scottish programmes such as Sportscene and the Thursday evening current affairs programme Timeline migrate to the new channel.

In future, Scottish-produced programmes such as Kirsty Wark’s recent The Insider’s Guide to the Menopause, Burns in the USA and the fly-on-the-wall documentary Sighthill will be shown on the new channel rather than BBC Two.

The NUJ in Scotland said it warmly welcomed the announcement from the BBC, which it said took most staff at Pacific Quay “by surprise”, saying it had tackled many of their concerns about future resourcing of news and current affairs.

National organiser Paul Holleran said: “It is great news, but we see this as the first step towards growing the investment in BBC Scotland and a move towards increasing the amount of spend north of the Border in line with the money raised here through the licence fee.”

Scottish culture secretary Fiona Hyslop, who had led Scottish Government demands for a shake-up of BBC Scotland in the past few years, said: “This is a real shift in the right direction from the BBC and responds to calls we’ve made for some time for a new TV channel for Scotland.

“While the increased investment in both journalism and wider production in Scotland is long overdue, this is a very positive development.

“It’s vital that the new BBC Scotland channel has complete commission and editorial independence, and is provided with the funding needed to match ambition.

“The channel will increase the proportion of the licence fee raised in Scotland that is spent in Scotland in years to come – but sadly will still fall well short of the proportionate share being spent in Northern Ireland and Wales.”

Ms Sturgeon told her Twitter followers there was “lots to welcome” in the announcement, but added that it was “vital” that the new channel was well funded.

She added: “Commitments to new investment and 80 additional jobs for journalists long overdue and very positive. It doesn’t deliver everything that everyone wanted – e.g. no Scottish 6 disappointing – but progress and hopefully sign of new thinking.”

SNP MP John Nicolson, a former BBC journalist, said: “You just have to watch the running order of the main BBC news. Quite often they will lead on an English health story then an English transport story. It will often have three English stories. That’s great for the people of England but it is obviously not good for the people of Scotland on their main channel.”

Shadow Scottish culture secretary Jackson Carlaw said: “This is an extremely welcome announcement. It’s good for jobs, journalism, scrutiny and programming. It also ensures those who still prefer the UK-wide BBC news at 6pm, and other programming on BBC1, get to keep that too.”

Scottish Labour’s culture spokesman Lewis Macdonald said the BBC had “listened to the views of Scots”.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "TOM PETERKIN AND BRIAN FERGUSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4373346.1487846014!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373346.1487846014!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "BBC director general Tony Hall has announced a new Scottish TV channel..","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "BBC director general Tony Hall has announced a new Scottish TV channel..","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4373346.1487846014!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/best-forest-camping-locations-in-scotland-1-4374402","id":"1.4374402","articleHeadline": "Best forest camping locations in Scotland","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487842626000 ,"articleLead": "

IF you want to escape the urban jungle and leave modern stresses behind, we think that camping in Scotland’s ancient forests is the perfect choice.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374401.1487842602!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Loch Lomond is a favourite destination for camping."} ,"articleBody": "

Scotland is blessed with miles and miles of beautiful woodland, as well as fantastic forest campsites in extraordinary locations. Whether your after a peaceful retreat or an action-packed outdoor adventure, Scotland’s forests will provide just what you need.

Cashel Campsite, Loch Lomond

This campsite is located on the east side of the famous Loch Lomond, and offers stunning views across the water, with mountains on either side.

Cashel is an open campsite deep within the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park, which also has direct access to Loch Lomond itself. You can launch your own boats from the site, or hire boats nearby. Taking a boat out onto the water will allow you to explore the many small islands scattered across the loch.

Avid walkers will be delighted to know that the West Highland Way passes by the campsite’s entrance, and that the 974 metre tall peak of Ben Lomond is less than two hours from the site.

As the campsite is situated within the Trossachs, there are a whole host of outdoor activities to enjoy. These include cliff jumping, archery, kayaking, orienteering, and clay pigeon shooting.

READ MORE: 5 of the best woodland walks in Edinburgh

Cobleland Campsitee, The Trossachs

Cobleland can be found on the banks of the River Forth, just 13 miles from Ben Lomond. One one side, you have the Forth, and on the other, you have the majestic Loch Ard Forest.

The camp’s 126 pitches are well-tended, and are sheltered by sturdy oak trees. You can explore the countryside right from the moment you open your tent-flap. The location of the campsite is also ideal, as it is within the Trossachs National Park, well known for its many outdoor activities and natural beauty.

Close by, you can climb Ben Venue, and see a panorama which takes in four lochs. From Aberfoyle, you can also walk along the Highland Boundary Fault Trail, from which you can spot some lovely waterfalls.

Loch Lomond Shores is also nearby, if you have a hankering for some shopping. Furthermore, Dumbarton Castle is within easy reach for any history buffs.

Glenmore Campsite, Aviemore

When you arrive at Glenmore, you will feel as though you are in a fairy tale. As well as being situated in an ancient pine forest, the site has direct access to the beaches of Loch Morlich.

The campsite is within the Cairngorms National Park, which covers an impressive 4,528 km2, and includes a diverse range of landscapes. You can find mountains, lochs and heathlands, as well as acres of forest. From the edge of Loch Morlich, just a short walk away from the site, you can see some gorgeous views, and, if you are lucky, perhaps some otters or an osprey.

In the National Park, there are more than 280 km of footpaths and trails to follow, and, in the winter, you can enjoy some skiing and snowboarding.

Also make sure to check out the Strathspey Steam Railway, the Cairngorm Mountain Railway, and the Cairngorm Mountain Centre, if you want to find out more about the area.

Sallochy Campsite, Loch Lomond

This semi-formal campsite only allows tents to be pitched, so this is a great choice for those who prefer a more wild camping holiday. The 200 year old oakwoods are a tranquil and secluded location, and are inhabited by wildlife such as roe deer and jays. It is also close to the east side of Loch Lomond, so a picnic by the loch’s shores are not out of the question. Rowardennan is nearby, as is the West Highland Way, one of the most popular walking routes in Scotland.

The Ben Lomond summit is also very close by, set in the Ben Lomond National Memorial Park.

If you want to discover more about the area, drop in to the Balmaha Visitor Centre. Go Ape is another great attraction, where you can experience the forest from the canopy rather than from the ground.

READ MORE: 6 Munro walks with good pubs at the end

Kilvrecht Campsite, Loch Rannoch

The modern world is a million miles away from Kilvrecht Campsite. Carie is right next to the site – with woods full of red squirrels, red deer, badgers and pine martens. Make sure to visit Loch Rannoch for some incredible views, and Allt na Bogair for its quirky bridge.

The Queen’s View Visitor Centre is another good place to visit, as it overlooks the waters of Loch Tummel, as well as a charming shop and café.

For a historical adventure, take a walk through the woods of Allean and discover an ancient hill fort, which has even more spectacular views of the surrounding landscape.

A local group, Rannoch and Tummel, organise regular walks for visitors, during which you can find out all about the local flora and fauna. 200 Voices: find out more about the people who have shaped Scotland

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "MADDIE SEARLE"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374401.1487842602!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374401.1487842602!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Loch Lomond is a favourite destination for camping.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Loch Lomond is a favourite destination for camping.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374401.1487842602!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/25k-mnd-scholarship-set-up-in-memory-of-gordon-aikman-1-4374168","id":"1.4374168","articleHeadline": "£25k MND scholarship set up in memory of Gordon Aikman","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487839546000 ,"articleLead": "

A new £25,000 scholarship to improve care for people with motor neurone disease (MND) will be set up in memory of campaigner Gordon Aikman.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374167.1487799164!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Gordon Aikman raised more than �500,000 for research. Picture: Jane Barlow"} ,"articleBody": "

Health Secretary Shona Robison announced the scholarship at Holyrood and said she hoped it would continue the work of the 31-year-old, who died earlier this month.

After being diagnosed with the terminal degenerative disease in 2014 aged 29 while working for the Better Together campaign, Mr Aikman formed the Gordon’s Fightback campaign and raised more than £500,000 for research to find a cure.

He also successfully lobbied the First Minister to double the number of MND nurses and secured a change in the law so people at risk of losing their voice as a result of a medical condition can access voice equipment on the NHS.

Ms Robison also revealed plans for a research event on how to bring MND clinical trials to Scotland.

Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale, a close friend of Mr Aikman, told parliament she would concentrate on his achievements and further work, highlighting his efforts that meant the waiting time for MND patients to be fitted with a feeding tube in NHS Lothian had dropped from 22 weeks to two weeks.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Catriona Webster"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374167.1487799164!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374167.1487799164!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Gordon Aikman raised more than �500,000 for research. Picture: Jane Barlow","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Gordon Aikman raised more than �500,000 for research. Picture: Jane Barlow","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374167.1487799164!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/bbc-chief-to-appear-before-msps-after-unveiling-scottish-9-1-4374337","id":"1.4374337","articleHeadline": "BBC chief to appear before MSPs after unveiling ‘Scottish 9’","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487837546000 ,"articleLead": "

BBC director general Tony Hall is to appear before Holyrood a day after announcing plans for a new Scottish channel.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374336.1487838211!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "BBC director general Tony Hall is to appear at Holyrood. Photo:LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images)"} ,"articleBody": "

The broadcaster stopped short of creating a so-called Scottish Six on the new channel to replace the UK-wide 6pm news and Scottish bulletin, but it will include an hour-long news programme, combining Scottish, UK and international news, at 9pm on weekdays.

The BBC said its current UK-wide 6pm news show had “performed strongly in Scotland in recent years”.

READ MORE: BBC announces new ‘Scottish 9’ on dedicated new £30m channel

BBC Scotland is due to begin broadcasting between 7pm and midnight daily from autumn 2018 and the hour-long news show, which will be edited and presented in Scotland, will lead to the creation of 80 new journalist posts.

The corporation is investing £19 million a year for the three years up to March 2019 in the new channel, which will be available on digital services such as Freeview and Sky as well as online and via the iPlayer.

The BBC also expects to increase the amount it spends in Scotland making programmes for a UK audience by an average of £20 million a year in the next three years, up from about £65 million in 2015-16.

Announcing the new channel, Lord Hall said: “All of this combined amounts to the biggest single investment by the BBC in broadcast content in Scotland in over 20 years.

“This will be a huge boost for BBC Scotland and for the Scottish creative industries.”

READ MORE: What we know about BBC’s new channel for Scotland

The announcement follows STV revealing plans for its own hour-long news programme at 7pm, STV News Tonight, to begin this year.

Lord Hall will give evidence to Holyrood’s Culture, Tourism, Europe and External Relations Committee on Thursday along with BBC Scotland director Donalda MacKinnon and Ken MacQuarrie, the BBC’s director for nations and regions.

Committee convener Joan McAlpine said: “I welcome the announcement of a new dedicated channel for Scotland, together with increased investment on programme making in Scotland and the commitment to 80 new jobs for journalists. I look forward to hearing more detail tomorrow from the Director General, in particular with regard to funding.

“There is a clear need for a fairer share of licence fee money raised in Scotland to be spent in Scotland. In 2014/15 only 55% raised was spent in Scotland, compared to 95% in Wales. Whilst this is a step in the right direction, the Committee is sure to have a lot of questions on how these ambitious targets will deliver value for money for license fee payers in Scotland and how they are going to be delivered.”

200 Voices: find out more about the people who have shaped Scotland

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Diane King"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374336.1487838211!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374336.1487838211!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "BBC director general Tony Hall is to appear at Holyrood. Photo:LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images)","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "BBC director general Tony Hall is to appear at Holyrood. Photo:LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images)","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374336.1487838211!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/environment/bugs-and-insects-feared-extinct-discovered-near-loch-ness-1-4374161","id":"1.4374161","articleHeadline": "Bugs and insects feared extinct discovered near Loch Ness","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487808001000 ,"articleLead": "

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374160.1487794845!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The knotty shining claw pseudoscorpion has been found north of the River Tay for the first time, at Dundreggan estate near Loch Ness. Picture: Trees for Life"} ,"articleBody": "

A host of rare and previously unseen bugs and insects have been discovered at a conservation estate in the Highlands – including some creatures that were feared to be extinct.

Unusual finds in the past 12 months include a midge never before found in the UK and a fierce-looking pseudoscorpion, thought to live only south of the River Tay.

The latest discoveries bring the total UK biodiversity “firsts” found at Dundreggan, on the shores of Loch Ness, to 11. Researchers at the charity Trees for Life, which runs the 10,000-acre estate, said the Glen Moriston site is proving to be a “lost world” for wildlife.

Other key findings during 2016 surveys were two rare gnats whose larvae feed on fungi. One of these has only been recorded at four other UK sites, while the other is known at only a handful of places in Scotland and had not been seen since 1990.

Trees for Life took over the Highland estate in 2008 with the aim of restoring part of Scotland’s native woodland.

“Dundreggan is a special part of the Caledonian Forest that keeps on revealing beautiful, interesting and rare species,” said charity founder Alan Watson Featherstone.

“The surprisingly rich wealth of life in this corner of the Highlands highlights the importance of concerted conservation action to protect and restore Scotland’s wild places.”

Two rare parasitic wasps and a micro-moth were also among the most recent finds, while three types of sawfly, an aphid, two aphid parasitoids, three fungus gnats and a mite discovered on the estate in recent years have never before been recorded in the UK.

Surveys at Dundreggan have also revealed the second-ever British record of a waxfly, a golden horsefly seen only once in Scotland since 1923, and a juniper shieldbug.

In total, more than 3,300 species have now been catalogued at the restoration site – at least 68 of which are earmarked as priorities for conservation.

Mr Watson Featherstone added: “Our latest discoveries add to an already remarkable range of rare and endangered species found at Dundreggan – some of which were previously unknown in the UK or Scotland, or which were feared to be extinct.”

Dundreggan contains substantial areas of ancient woodlands, including remnants of the original Caledonian Forest, birch-juniper woodlands and the largest expanse of dwarf birch in Scotland.

By planting trees and encouraging natural regeneration, conservationists aim to create an unbroken native woodland link between Glen Moriston and Glen Affric.

Work includes planting 500,000 trees and efforts to bring back rare woodland plants and wildlife. The charity also operates research and education programmes.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Ilona Amos"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374160.1487794845!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374160.1487794845!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The knotty shining claw pseudoscorpion has been found north of the River Tay for the first time, at Dundreggan estate near Loch Ness. Picture: Trees for Life","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The knotty shining claw pseudoscorpion has been found north of the River Tay for the first time, at Dundreggan estate near Loch Ness. Picture: Trees for Life","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374160.1487794845!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/mundell-tax-rise-will-drive-away-immigration-from-scotland-1-4374199","id":"1.4374199","articleHeadline": "Mundell: Tax rise will drive away immigration from Scotland","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487808000000 ,"articleLead": "

Plans to make Scotland the highest taxed part of the UK could drive away future immigration, the Scottish Secretary has claimed.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374197.1487801371!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "David Mundell attacked Holyroods use of its new tax powers to change the higher rate threshold. Picture: Andrew Cowan/Scottish Parliament"} ,"articleBody": "

David Mundell said yesterday the measures backed by MSPs this week could discourage doctors and other key workers from coming north of the Border.

But the SNP has pointed towards new research which shows the overall tax burden facing people in Scotland is down because council tax is lower.

The SNP has demanded control of immigration following the Brexit vote. This has been ruled out by the UK government, but Mr Mundell said parts of Scotland and other areas of the UK could get some kind of special arrangement to counter issues such as de-population.

But he attacked measures passed by MSPs this week, using Holyrood’s new tax powers, which will freeze the threshold for the higher rate of 40p at £43,000. South of the Border, this threshold is rising to £45,000. It means about 374,000 Scots – one in seven workers – will pay more than their counterparts in the rest of the UK.

Mr Mundell said: “Of the people who come into the United Kingdom at this moment, only 4 per cent end up in Scotland.

“Making Scotland the highest taxed part of the United Kingdom is not necessarily the way to attract medical professionals to come to Scotland. There are a lot of other things they could do.”

However, his views came as analysis by the Scottish Parliament’s Information Centre showed that overall council tax bills are cheaper in Scotland by £300-£400 a year, which the SNP’s Ivan McKee said effectively cancels out the tax change.

He said: “The SNP’s tax plans are balanced, progressive and support investment in public services.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "SCOTT MACNAB"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374197.1487801371!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374197.1487801371!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "David Mundell attacked Holyroods use of its new tax powers to change the higher rate threshold. Picture: Andrew Cowan/Scottish Parliament","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "David Mundell attacked Holyroods use of its new tax powers to change the higher rate threshold. Picture: Andrew Cowan/Scottish Parliament","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374197.1487801371!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/tories-back-plans-for-new-nuclear-power-plants-in-scotland-1-4374207","id":"1.4374207","articleHeadline": "Tories back plans for new nuclear power plants in Scotland","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487808000000 ,"articleLead": "

The creation of two new nuclear power plants in Scotland has been backed by the Scottish Conservatives.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374206.1487801873!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ruth Davidson tries out an electric car to launch the Scottish Conservatives new environment policy. Picture: PA"} ,"articleBody": "

They would be housed on the site of the current plants at Torness in East Lothian and Hunterston in Ayrshire which are coming to the end of their lifespans.

Both have already had their operational lives extended – with the backing of the anti-nuclear SNP government – because they are seen as essential to keeping the country’s energy mix.

Tory leader Ruth Davidson is also backing a target to ensure 50 per cent of Scotland’s energy comes from renewables by 2030 and a drive towards greater use of electric cars in proposals set out in a major new policy paper on the environment yesterday.

The plans came under fire from opposition parties who dismissed the Tories’ “green” credentials.

But Ms Davidson said: “Our approach will provide Scots with a greener and more 
pleasant land to call home. We set ourselves this task because it is one of the greatest challenges of our times.

“It is for this generation to tackle the issue and ensure the next will live in a better, more productive and sustainable world. I ask you to join us as we meet that challenge head on.”

The Tory government at Westminster has already unveiled plans to rebuild the Hinkley Point nuclear power station in Somerset, which will be led by French operator EDF, with new nuclear projects in the pipeline.

The Tory plan also backs the creation of national parks where there is public support. They also want to see 10 per cent of the Scottish Government’s capital budget spent on energy efficiency measures aimed at ensuring all homes are energy efficient by 2030.

A new target is proposed to ensure 75 per cent of all waste is recycled by 2035 through the creation of an easy-to-use collection system.

But the plans were dismissed by Greens environment spokesman Mark Ruskell.

He said: “The Tories have no environmental credentials. Actions always speak louder than words, and the actions of their UK government have set back the creation of jobs in Scotland’s renewables industry. As they flap about, trying to shed their nasty image, ­people will recognise greenwash when they see it.”

Liberal Democrat Liam McArthur accused the Tories at Westminster of “sweeping cuts” in renewables.

“The Tories are about as eco-friendly as a dustbin fire,” Mr McArthur said.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "SCOTT MACNAB"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374206.1487801873!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374206.1487801873!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Ruth Davidson tries out an electric car to launch the Scottish Conservatives new environment policy. Picture: PA","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ruth Davidson tries out an electric car to launch the Scottish Conservatives new environment policy. Picture: PA","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374206.1487801873!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/environment/tiree-surfers-beach-hut-to-be-removed-after-council-vote-1-4374222","id":"1.4374222","articleHeadline": "Tiree surfers’ beach hut to be removed after council vote","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487808000000 ,"articleLead": "

A remote island beach hut that has helped young surfing stars on the road to success is set to be removed after a vote by councillors.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374221.1487803496!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Tiree Surf Club members Marti and Ben Larg and Andrew Robertson outside the beach hut. Picture: Roger Cox"} ,"articleBody": "

Ben Larg, Scotland’s under-14 surfing champion and Finn MacDonald, the under-18 champion, use the hut as a first aid post and changing room as they train, in all weathers, on Tiree’s Balevullin beach.

But the three metre by four metre hut, which is also used by many other surfers, yesterday failed to get retrospective planning permission from Argyll and Bute Council. It was refused on planning committee chairman David Kinniburgh’s casting vote, after members were split 3-3 on whether it should remain.

Ben’s parents Marti and Iona Larg, who run their Blackwater Sports surfing business from the hut, have vowed to appeal against the decision that the beach should remain as an undeveloped natural environment.

Mrs Larg said: “We will go to appeal on this because I really think we have got a strong argument. The beach hut is essentially a place of safety for children to carry out this activity.”

Ben and Finn are both tipped to win a place to represent the UK at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Mrs Larg said: “Scotland is at the forefront of surfing now and what we have done here has been hugely successful.”

She added: “Tiree has got a declining population, it’s an economically fragile area and this is a successful business – but it’s not being supported.”

Planning officers recommended refusal and said in a report to councillors: “Its very presence on an otherwise undeveloped beach poses a serious issue, as its open and unspoiled character forms a vital part of the area’s local distinctiveness.

“The proposed development is sited upon an otherwise undeveloped and unspoiled beach.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Moira Kerr"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374221.1487803496!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374221.1487803496!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Tiree Surf Club members Marti and Ben Larg and Andrew Robertson outside the beach hut. Picture: Roger Cox","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Tiree Surf Club members Marti and Ben Larg and Andrew Robertson outside the beach hut. Picture: Roger Cox","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374221.1487803496!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/lawyers-warn-legal-aid-system-needs-urgent-overhaul-1-4374224","id":"1.4374224","articleHeadline": "Lawyers warn legal aid system needs ‘urgent overhaul’","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487803643000 ,"articleLead": "

The body representing Scotland’s lawyers has raised concerns over the future of legal aid after a report warned smaller firms are making a loss on the work.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374223.1487803621!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Law Society of Scotland said the system was in need of urgent overhaul. Picture: TSPL"} ,"articleBody": "

The Law Society of Scotland said the system was in need of “urgent overhaul” following the publication of research carried out on its behalf.

The report, The Financial Health of Legal Aid Firms in Scotland, warned that some of the country’s smallest legal aid law firms are carrying out the work at a loss and are at serious risk of being unable to offer legal aid services.

But the Scottish Legal Aid Board said it had “very serious concerns” about how the research was conducted.

Eilidh Wiseman, president of the Law Society, said: “We are deeply concerned that people relying on legal aid to help them, whether facing unlawful eviction, resolving custody of their children, or defending a criminal charge, may soon be unable to find a legal aid solicitor because sadly many solicitors simply can’t afford to carry out this work.

“Every person in Scotland should be able to access the legal advice they need and have equal protection under the law, regardless of financial situation or status in society. The Scottish legal aid system needs an urgent overhaul.”

Nearly £140 million was spent on legal aid in 2015-16, the majority going on criminal legal assistance.

Earlier this month the Scottish Government announced an independent review of legal aid led by Carnegie Trust chairman Martyn Evans.

A spokesman for the Scottish Legal Aid Board said: “We share the Law Society’s strong interest in the financial health of legal aid firms in Scotland, which on the basis of its report appears to be fairly robust. The society’s report shows that the majority of firms participating in its survey are profitable and those doing more legal aid work are substantially more so.

“However, we have a number of very serious concerns about the analysis. We have already pointed out major errors, some of which the society has corrected, but the report still presents an inaccurate and misleading picture.”

A Scottish Government spokesman said: “The independent review is taking a long-term and strategic look at the legal aid system. We want to focus legal aid on those who need it most and have maintained access to publicly funded legal aid in both civil and criminal cases.

“The independent review is about ensuring there is a flexible and progressive system that is ­sustainable.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "CHRIS MARSHALL"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374223.1487803621!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374223.1487803621!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Law Society of Scotland said the system was in need of urgent overhaul. Picture: TSPL","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Law Society of Scotland said the system was in need of urgent overhaul. Picture: TSPL","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374223.1487803621!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/private-hospital-told-to-provide-policy-for-restraints-use-1-4374209","id":"1.4374209","articleHeadline": "Private hospital told to provide policy for restraints use","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487802631000 ,"articleLead": "

A private hospital which provides treatment for eating disorders has been told to provide a written policy for possible future use of specialist mechanical restraint equipment for treating such illnesses, following a visit by the Mental Welfare Commission for Scotland (MWCS).

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374208.1487802607!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Huntercombe Hospital in West Lothian said it had no plans to introduce use of the equipment. Picture: Lisa Ferguson"} ,"articleBody": "

Huntercombe Hospital in Uphall, West Lothian, a 22-bed facility providing inpatient mental health assessment and treatment for young people aged 11-18, was visited unannounced by the commission on 6 December last year.

Inspectors saw specialist equipment for nasogastric feeding – when food is carried to the stomach through a tube via the nose – and discussed with managers how the equipment was used.

Such equipment is used in treating very ill patients and is designed to make naso­gastric feeding as comfortable as ­possible.

The report stated: “We were informed any forms of mechanical restraint considered are no different from that used in NHS eating disorder units elsewhere. At present the use of mechanical restraint is being further investigated by the Huntercombe team as they consider whether to use it in future. We advised contacting the State Hospital for advice.”

A MWCS spokeswoman said: “The equipment we saw on our visit had not been used, but was there for potential future use in severe cases.”

A spokesman for the hospital said: “The Huntercombe Hospital Edinburgh does not use mechanical restraint. It has no plans to introduce it. There are no such devices in the hospital and there have never been.

“The Huntercombe group does not support the use of any such device in any of its hospitals.

“As part of keeping informed of all developments in areas of eating disorder, the hospital director sought counsel on latest practice in the NHS in some of their eating disorder units. He also consulted the Mental Welfare Commission. The Commission simply asked that the hospital director keep them informed of the development of any policies around use of such restraint practice by the hospital.

“However, the director and senior clinical team were clear that they would not introduce such devices or practices as they considered they were not appropriate in our hospital.

“They informed the Mental Welfare Commission of that when they visited. As such, the policy is not to use such restraints.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "SHN ROSS"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374208.1487802607!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374208.1487802607!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Huntercombe Hospital in West Lothian said it had no plans to introduce use of the equipment. Picture: Lisa Ferguson","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Huntercombe Hospital in West Lothian said it had no plans to introduce use of the equipment. Picture: Lisa Ferguson","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374208.1487802607!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/regions/edinburgh-fife-lothians/national-museum-topples-edinburgh-castle-as-busiest-attraction-1-4374170","id":"1.4374170","articleHeadline": "National Museum topples Edinburgh Castle as busiest attraction","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487798773000 ,"articleLead": "

The National Museum of Scotland has reclaimed top spot from Edinburgh Castle as the nation’s busiest attraction, as booming visitor numbers were reported across the country.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374169.1487797623!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The National Museum of Scotland has seen a surge of visitors since 10 new galleries opened last summer."} ,"articleBody": "

The opening of ten new galleries showcasing art, design, fashion, science and technology helped the Edinburgh museum record a 15 per cent rise in its 150th anniversary year.

The castle saw a 13.4 per cent increase last year, the equivalent of 200,000 visitors, but still lagged 32,4000 behind the museum.

The Scottish National Gallery complex in Edinburgh and Glasgow’s Riverside Museum were among the other best performers, recording rises of 12.1 per cent and 11.5 per cent respectively.

Figures compiled by tourism experts at Glasgow Caledonian University’s Moffat Centre, revealed a 6.5 per cent increase across the top 20 paid-for and free sites, which attracted 21.7 million visitors.

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, the historic attraction, was overtaken by the Riverside Museum last year, while the Loch Lomond Shores complex at Balloch and St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh also recorded more than a million visitors each.

Professor John Lennon, director of the Moffat Centre, said: “There is no doubt that Scotland’s visitor attractions have benefitted from the lower value of Sterling against the Euro and the US Dollar. This has made the prospect of a visit to Scotland at its most affordable for some years.

“In addition the positive demand from domestic visitors has also helped increase admissions as many families chose a ‘staycation’ because of concerns of the value of the pound and perceived concerns about security in many destinations.”

Dr Gordon Rintoul, director of the National Museum of Scotland, which unveiled the new galleries last July, said: “I am delighted the latest figures from the Moffat Centre have seen the museum named as the most popular attraction in Scotland. 2016 was a fantastic year for the Museum, with celebrations to mark its 150th anniversary and the opening of ten new galleries of applied art, fashion, design, science and technology.

“Furthermore, we recorded the highest ever visitor numbers across all our sites, with nearly 2.7 million visits.”

The National Galleries of Scotland has just embarked on a £16.8 million overhaul of the Scottish National Gallery, which is expected to provide a huge boost to its visitor numbers, which reached 1.54 million last year and was the third busiest attraction in Scotland.

A spokesman said: “The key to the increase in visitors is strong programming along with the draw of an outstanding collection. A rich mix of exhibitions and successful and high-profile initiatives help explain this level of success.”

Malcolm Roughead, chief executive of national tourism agency VisitScotland, said: “It is great to see a wide array of Scotland’s fabulous attractions enjoy such a successful year.

“The visitor economy causes a ripple effect that touches every industry, business and community in the country, so it is not only the attractions, but Scotland as a whole, that reaps the rewards.”

SCOTLAND'S 10 MOST POPULAR VISITOR ATTRACTIONS

National Museum of Scotland 1,810,948

Edinburgh Castle 1,778,548

Scottish National Gallery (Edinburgh) 1,544,069

Loch Lomond Shores 1,316,656

Riverside Museum (Glasgow) 1,261,681

Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum (Glasgow) 1,259,318

St Giles’ Cathedral (Edinburgh) 1,171,793

Gretna Green Famous Blacksmith’s Shop 794,543

Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh 790,050

National War Museum (Edinburgh) 678,982

" ,"byline": {"email": "brian.ferguson@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Brian Ferguson"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374169.1487797623!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374169.1487797623!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The National Museum of Scotland has seen a surge of visitors since 10 new galleries opened last summer.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The National Museum of Scotland has seen a surge of visitors since 10 new galleries opened last summer.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374169.1487797623!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/scot-killed-in-cyprus-emergency-awarded-elizabeth-cross-1-4374173","id":"1.4374173","articleHeadline": "Scot killed in Cyprus Emergency awarded Elizabeth Cross","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487797431000 ,"articleLead": "

The sister of a Scottish soldier killed during service more than 60 years ago has collected an honour in his memory.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374171.1487797400!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jean Andrew is presented with the Elizabeth Cross in memory of her brother Private John Lindop Beattie. Picture: John Devlin"} ,"articleBody": "

Jean Andrew, the sister of Private John Lindop Beattie who died during the Cyprus Emergency in 1956, was presented with the Elizabeth Cross in Glasgow on Wednesday.

The 19-year-old from the Garngad area of Glasgow was one of three soldiers killed when a bomb detonated during a football game.

Last year, Margaret Moncur, 75, collected the emblem in memory of her brother, Private Matthew Neely, who also died in the incident.

The women have now become friends and are hoping to trace the family of the third casualty, Private Ben Doherty.

200 Voices: find out more about the people who have shaped Scotland

The cross is given to the next of kin of soldiers killed in service since the Second World War.

Ms Andrew, 73, collected the honour from Lord Provost Sadie Docherty in Glasgow City Chambers and said: “Obviously, he died at 19 and didn’t have much of a life.

“I remember all the friends and neighbours collecting with big milk tins in the dance halls to get the money to bring his body home. Nobody had anything in these days.

“He was just forgotten about and I’ve tried and tried, and finally something’s been done and he’s been recognised now. It means a lot. I’ll die happy.”

Ms Docherty said: “It’s important that families of these soldiers do receive some recognition of their service. Conflict visits great costs on everyone who loses a loved one.

“It’s my honour and pleasure to be able to present the Elizabeth Cross. I know that it’s a source of great pride and comfort to surviving family members.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Carly McKinley"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374171.1487797400!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374171.1487797400!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Jean Andrew is presented with the Elizabeth Cross in memory of her brother Private John Lindop Beattie. Picture: John Devlin","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jean Andrew is presented with the Elizabeth Cross in memory of her brother Private John Lindop Beattie. Picture: John Devlin","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374171.1487797400!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374172.1487797408!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374172.1487797408!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Jean Andrew, sister of Scottish soldier killed in 1956 who has been given the Elizabeth Cross. Picture: John Devlin","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jean Andrew, sister of Scottish soldier killed in 1956 who has been given the Elizabeth Cross. Picture: John Devlin","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374172.1487797408!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/who-should-be-scotland-s-first-official-heroine-1-4374112","id":"1.4374112","articleHeadline": "Who should be Scotland’s first official heroine?","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487795662000 ,"articleLead": "

The search is on for the first woman to enter Scotland’s Hall of Fame at the National Wallace Monument.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374098.1487795273!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Mary Slessor, Missionary, (1848-1915), was a celebrated missionary whose work in Africa was inspired by David Livingstone. \\nShe worked tirelessly to improve quality of life in Calabar and challenged local superstitions and beliefs to save the lives of twins and their mothers. PIC: The Wallace Monument."} ,"articleBody": "

The public is now be asked to help decide which woman should be immortalised alongside figures such as King Robert the Bruce, John Knox and Sir Walter Scott.

On the shortlist in the Arts, Culture & Sport category are Gaelic poet Màiri Mhòr nan Òran (1821-1898), Glasgow artist Margaret Macdonald Mackintosh (1864-1933), folk singer Jean Redpath (1937-2014) and champion swimmer Nancy Riach (1927-1947).

Doctor and suffragette Elsie Inglis (1864-1917), doctor and women’s rights campaigner Sophia Jex Blake (1840-1912) and co-founder of Maggie’s Centres, Maggie Keswick Jencks (1941-1995), made the shortlist in the Medicine Category.

Automobile engineer, racing car driver and entrepreneur Dorothée Pullinger (1894-1986) made the Science and Engineering Category along with marine engineer Victoria Drummond (1894-1978), Jessie Chrystal MacMillan (1872 -1937), the first female science graduate, and Mary Somerville (1780 - 1872), a scientist, astronomer and mathematician.

The Public Life nominees are Scotland’s first female archaeologist, Christian Maclagan (1811-1901), Jane Haining, the Church of Scotland missionary in Hungary and Mary Slessor (1848-1915), the missionary who transformed living standards and education in Africa.

Chair of Stirling District Tourism, Zillah Jamieson, said: “These historic female figures have been chosen because they have shaped Scotland’s history and surprised delighted and inspired generation after generation after generation with their determination, fortitude and spirit –the very values which William Wallace stood for.”

To cast your vote, visit www.nationalwallacemonument.com or visit the National Wallace Monument in person. The deadline for final entries is 31st March 2017.

200 Voices: find out more about the people who have shaped Scotland

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374098.1487795273!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374098.1487795273!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Mary Slessor, Missionary, (1848-1915), was a celebrated missionary whose work in Africa was inspired by David Livingstone. \\nShe worked tirelessly to improve quality of life in Calabar and challenged local superstitions and beliefs to save the lives of twins and their mothers. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Mary Slessor, Missionary, (1848-1915), was a celebrated missionary whose work in Africa was inspired by David Livingstone. \\nShe worked tirelessly to improve quality of life in Calabar and challenged local superstitions and beliefs to save the lives of twins and their mothers. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374098.1487795273!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374099.1487795280!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374099.1487795280!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Nancy Riach, swimmer, (1927-1947), held 28 Scottish and British swimming records by the time she was 17. Following her death from polio aged 20, she was hailed as the finest swimmer that the British Empire had ever produced. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Nancy Riach, swimmer, (1927-1947), held 28 Scottish and British swimming records by the time she was 17. Following her death from polio aged 20, she was hailed as the finest swimmer that the British Empire had ever produced. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374099.1487795280!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374100.1487795284!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374100.1487795284!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Victoria Drummond, Engineer, (1894-1978), was the first female marine engineer in Britain and the first British woman to serve as chief engineer with the Merchant Navy. \\nAs a result of her courage under fire at sea during World War II, she was awarded a MBE in 1941 and was the first woman to receive the Lloyd's War Medal for Bravery at Sea. PIC The Wallace Monument.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Victoria Drummond, Engineer, (1894-1978), was the first female marine engineer in Britain and the first British woman to serve as chief engineer with the Merchant Navy. \\nAs a result of her courage under fire at sea during World War II, she was awarded a MBE in 1941 and was the first woman to receive the Lloyd's War Medal for Bravery at Sea. PIC The Wallace Monument.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374100.1487795284!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374101.1487795288!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374101.1487795288!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Sophia Jex-Blake, Doctor, (1840-1912), led a campaign to allow woman to graduate in medicine at Edinburgh University. After qualifying in Switzerland, she went on to found the Edinburgh School of Medicine for Women and lectured in midwifery at the School of Medicine of the Royal Colleges. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Sophia Jex-Blake, Doctor, (1840-1912), led a campaign to allow woman to graduate in medicine at Edinburgh University. After qualifying in Switzerland, she went on to found the Edinburgh School of Medicine for Women and lectured in midwifery at the School of Medicine of the Royal Colleges. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374101.1487795288!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374102.1487795634!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374102.1487795634!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "M�iri Mh�r nan Oran was the most prolific of the 19th Century Gaelic poets and a campaigner for crofters rights.\\n\\nBorn in Skye, she worked as a nurse to a wealthy family in Inverness and was sentenced to 40 days in jail after being wrongly accused of theft. She became the voice of the oppressed with her songs still widely sung today. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "M�iri Mh�r nan Oran was the most prolific of the 19th Century Gaelic poets and a campaigner for crofters rights.\\n\\nBorn in Skye, she worked as a nurse to a wealthy family in Inverness and was sentenced to 40 days in jail after being wrongly accused of theft. She became the voice of the oppressed with her songs still widely sung today. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374102.1487795634!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374103.1487795294!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374103.1487795294!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Mary Somerville, Scientist, (1780-1872), was an outstanding mathematician, astronomer, scientist and successful writer ofthe Victorian era. She was one of the first two women elected as honorary members of the Royal Astronomical Society and Somerville College, Oxford, was named after her. PIC The Wallace Monument.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Mary Somerville, Scientist, (1780-1872), was an outstanding mathematician, astronomer, scientist and successful writer ofthe Victorian era. She was one of the first two women elected as honorary members of the Royal Astronomical Society and Somerville College, Oxford, was named after her. PIC The Wallace Monument.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374103.1487795294!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374104.1487795639!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374104.1487795639!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "MargaretMacdonald Mackintosh, Artist(1864 -1933), was a defining talent of the "Glasgow Style" during the 1890s.\\nWWorking in watercolour, metalwork,embroidery and textiles, she also collaborated with her husband, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, on a number of projects. PIC The Wallace Monument.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "MargaretMacdonald Mackintosh, Artist(1864 -1933), was a defining talent of the "Glasgow Style" during the 1890s.\\nWWorking in watercolour, metalwork,embroidery and textiles, she also collaborated with her husband, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, on a number of projects. PIC The Wallace Monument.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374104.1487795639!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374105.1487795302!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374105.1487795302!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Maggie Keswick Jencks (1941-1995) co-founded Maggies Centres for cancer care following her own diagnosis with the disease.\\nA writer,gardener and designer, she created the blueprint for the centres which have delivered patient-led care to thousands of people in an architecturally exceptional environment. PIC The Wallace Monument.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Maggie Keswick Jencks (1941-1995) co-founded Maggies Centres for cancer care following her own diagnosis with the disease.\\nA writer,gardener and designer, she created the blueprint for the centres which have delivered patient-led care to thousands of people in an architecturally exceptional environment. PIC The Wallace Monument.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374105.1487795302!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374106.1487795306!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374106.1487795306!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Jessie Chrystal Macmillan, campaigner,(1872-1937) was a barrister, politican, suffragette, pacifist and the first female science graduate from Edinburgh University, where she has a building named after her. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jessie Chrystal Macmillan, campaigner,(1872-1937) was a barrister, politican, suffragette, pacifist and the first female science graduate from Edinburgh University, where she has a building named after her. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374106.1487795306!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374107.1487795310!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374107.1487795310!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Jean Redpath, Musician, (1937-2014), was an internationally regarded folk singer, educator and musician who was was considered by many to be the voice of Scots traditional song., She was awarded a MBE in 1987 for her services to music. PIC The Wallace Monument.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jean Redpath, Musician, (1937-2014), was an internationally regarded folk singer, educator and musician who was was considered by many to be the voice of Scots traditional song., She was awarded a MBE in 1987 for her services to music. PIC The Wallace Monument.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374107.1487795310!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374108.1487795314!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374108.1487795314!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Jane Haining, (1897-1944), was a Church of Scotland missionary and matron at the Jewish Girls' Home in Budapest during WWII. Following the invasion of Hungary, she was arrestedby the Gestapo and sent to Auschwitz, where she died. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jane Haining, (1897-1944), was a Church of Scotland missionary and matron at the Jewish Girls' Home in Budapest during WWII. Following the invasion of Hungary, she was arrestedby the Gestapo and sent to Auschwitz, where she died. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374108.1487795314!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374109.1487795315!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374109.1487795315!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "ChristianMaclagan, Archaeologist (1811-1901), was arguably Scotland�s first female archaeologist and careried out one of the earliest surveys of the Abbey Craig. \\nShe was denied full membership of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotlandbecause she was a woman. PIC Stirling Museums.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "ChristianMaclagan, Archaeologist (1811-1901), was arguably Scotland�s first female archaeologist and careried out one of the earliest surveys of the Abbey Craig. \\nShe was denied full membership of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotlandbecause she was a woman. PIC Stirling Museums.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374109.1487795315!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374110.1487795319!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374110.1487795319!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Doroth�ePullinger,Engineer (1894-1986), was an accomplished automobile engineer, racing car driver, entrepreneur and founding \\nmember of the Women�s Engineering Society.\\n During WWI she was responsible for 7,000 women employed in manufacturing high explosive shells. She managed 13 factories during WWII. PIC The Wallace Monument.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Doroth�ePullinger,Engineer (1894-1986), was an accomplished automobile engineer, racing car driver, entrepreneur and founding \\nmember of the Women�s Engineering Society.\\n During WWI she was responsible for 7,000 women employed in manufacturing high explosive shells. She managed 13 factories during WWII. PIC The Wallace Monument.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374110.1487795319!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374111.1487795322!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374111.1487795322!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Elsie Inglis,Doctor, (1864-1917), was a pioneering surgeon and physician who founded Scottish Womens Hospitals for Home and Foreign Service and delivered health care in war zones across the world. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Elsie Inglis,Doctor, (1864-1917), was a pioneering surgeon and physician who founded Scottish Womens Hospitals for Home and Foreign Service and delivered health care in war zones across the world. PIC: The Wallace Monument.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374111.1487795322!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/nicola-sturgeon/nicola-sturgeon-women-politicians-have-it-harder-than-men-1-4374002","id":"1.4374002","articleHeadline": "Nicola Sturgeon: Women politicians have it harder than men","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487783805000 ,"articleLead": "

Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has spoken out about the sexist attitudes she still battles as a senior woman politician.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374001.1487783783!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "First Minister Nicola Sturgeon. Picture: John Devlin"} ,"articleBody": "

In a wide-ranging interview with The Gentlewoman magazine, the SNP leader brought up a number of incidents that what she was wearing was pored over more than her policy statements.

Sturgeon also noted the burden that female politicians are under compared to their more widespread male counterparts.

She said: “Every time a woman politician goes in front of a camera, there are maybe 100 things that she has to worry about, consciously or subconsciously, that a man will never have to have cross his mind.”

At her groundbreaking and glass-ceiling shattering meeting with Theresa May, the second woman Prime Minister in Britain, Sturgeon said that some reporters were “only interested in our shoes”.

Sturgeon, Scotland’s first female First Minister, also spoken about her difficulty in opening up about a miscarriage and bemoaned the image bestowed on her and other childless politicians of making a cold, career-focused decision not to start a family.

She told the magazine: “For many women, that’s not the case.

“It’s so complex. In my life, the not wanting to have kids, the not being able to have kids, having the miscarriage – these have all been true at different points.”

The profile also charted Sturgeon’s rise from teenage activist to First Minister through the highs of victory and the lows of SNP support being comparatively non existent in Sturgeon’s youth.

The First Minister told the magazine of her disappointment at Hillary Clinton failing to become the first female President of the USA, and noted comparisons between the two politicians.

She added: “I’ve identified with a lot of what she’s been through, and I admired a lot of how she has dealt with that.”

The full interview appears in the Spring/Summer ‘17 issue of The Gentlewoman.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Ross McCafferty"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4374001.1487783783!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4374001.1487783783!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "First Minister Nicola Sturgeon. Picture: John Devlin","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "First Minister Nicola Sturgeon. Picture: John Devlin","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4374001.1487783783!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/what-we-know-about-bbc-s-new-channel-for-scotland-1-4373849","id":"1.4373849","articleHeadline": "What we know about BBC’s new channel for Scotland","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487783356000 ,"articleLead": "

In an announcement that shocked many this morning, the BBC has announced sweeping new changes to the services delivered to Scotland.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373996.1487783333!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "BBC director general Tony Hall has announced a new Scottish TV channel. Picture: John Devlin"} ,"articleBody": "

A new channel will be launched, broadcasting in Scotland delay from 7pm every day, and a new ‘Scottish nine’ will offer international news from a Scottish perspective every evening.

The channel will have a budget of £30m, made up from some £10m of current funds, and upwards of £19m of new investment.

Tony Hall, Director-General of the BBC, hailed the move as the most significant investment in Scottish broadcasting in over two decades.

It comes after years of criticism of the BBC for not directing enough resources to Scotland, and calls for a ‘Scottish Six’ nightly news programme.

We look beyond the headlines for some of the detail in the new proposals.

A massive boost?

The investment announced by BBC bosses has already been pored over by concerned parties and compared unfavourably to other budgets.

Comedian Rory Bremner noted that the £30m figure was just £5m more than the reported budget for Channel 4’s recent acquisition the Great British Bake Off.

It is true, that with megabucks money still in TV for shows and channels that pull in ratings, £30m is relatively small beer.

But that doesn’t mean that it isn’t significant.

It is the around the same as the figures for BBC Four, which is praised for its cultural content and is the home of many critically acclaimed imports and original series.

The jobs figures alone (around 80 posts are being created) would be hailed by politicians of all stripes had they been announced in the private sector.

The million-pound plus for BBC Alba is not to be sniffed at either.

Why have the BBC announced it?

There’s no denying that this decision is partly to head off long-standing criticism that in the post-devolution years Scotland is still poorly served by the BBC.

Unlike in England, where the complaints are off that the BBC is too big and bloated and is strangling competition, Scottish politicians often want to see the BBC expand.

Previous BBC bigwigs in television have bemoaned the daily ‘chorus of criticism’ that comes their way, with allegations of bias never too far from the lips of some outspoken commentators and politicians.

The motivations aren’t all political, the BBC has been undertaken a long-term project in which it reassess how it delivers services to the regions and nations of the UK.

The responses to surveys and other research, including the discovery that Scotland watches more TV than the rest of the UK, have been a massive factor in today’s announcement.

Please all of the people

That last thought might be a little too optimistic.

There is a rich vein of scepticism in many walks of life in Scotland about how benign, or otherwise, the BBC is.

Protesters were a semi-regular feature outside the Glasgow offices in the build-up to the referendum on independence in 2014.

Many in the SNP, from Alex Salmond down, have singled out the corporation and even particular journalists, for their ire.

Initial response to today’s announcement from Scotland’s ruling party hasn’t filled observers with confidence that they have accepted a Scottish nine as an alternative to their much-vaunted Scottish Six.

Angus MacNeil, a senior MP, reacted to today’s news by retweeting an old tweet of his own that demanded ‘give us back our cash BBC’.

Craig Murray, an SNP supporter, wrote on his blog that they new ‘anti Scottish channel’ was a useful propaganda tool ahead of the next independence referendum.

And therein lies the problem for the BBC. For a significant portion of Scots, from the ordinary man and woman to our politicians, trust is often so low that any investment, even a positive one, becomes a hard sell to a sceptical nation.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Ross McCafferty"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4373996.1487783333!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373996.1487783333!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "BBC director general Tony Hall has announced a new Scottish TV channel. Picture: John Devlin","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "BBC director general Tony Hall has announced a new Scottish TV channel. Picture: John Devlin","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4373996.1487783333!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/irvine-welsh-drops-hint-about-trainspotting-3-1-4373763","id":"1.4373763","articleHeadline": "Irvine Welsh drops hint about Trainspotting 3","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487777152000 ,"articleLead": "

Irvine Welsh has hinted teasingly at the possibility of a sequel to T2 Trainspotting ahead of Wednesday’s derby clash between Hibs and Hearts.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373762.1487775773!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Irvine Welsh arriving at the world premiere of Trainspotting 2 at Cineworld in Edinburgh. Picture: Jane Barlow/PA Wire"} ,"articleBody": "

Responding on Twitter to a fan who urged him to commit to another film, the Leith-born author posted: “Aye Naw Mibee”.

And when asked if a Hibs victory would convince him, Welsh replied: “Okay then. But if Hearts win you get Fifty Shades 3.”

His comments come after T2 received its world premiere in Edinburgh last month.

Hibs and Hearts will meet tonight at Easter Road.

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200 Voices: find out more about the people who have shaped Scotland

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "DIANE KING"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4373762.1487775773!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373762.1487775773!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Irvine Welsh arriving at the world premiere of Trainspotting 2 at Cineworld in Edinburgh. Picture: Jane Barlow/PA Wire","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Irvine Welsh arriving at the world premiere of Trainspotting 2 at Cineworld in Edinburgh. Picture: Jane Barlow/PA Wire","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4373762.1487775773!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/salmon-fest-to-celebrate-100-years-of-inverness-angling-club-1-4373758","id":"1.4373758","articleHeadline": "Salmon Fest to celebrate 100 years of Inverness Angling Club","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487775667000 ,"articleLead": "

A HISTORIC angling club is to celebrate its 100th anniversary as part of Scotland’s Salmon Festival being hosted in Inverness.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373757.1487775308!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Melanie Smith, of Inverness College UHI, with Graham Mackenzie, Scott Mackenzie and junior casters Fraser Shanks, Jordan Grant and Fraser Munro. Picture: Contributed"} ,"articleBody": "

Inverness Angling Club is now welcoming entries to its Centenary Speycasting Tournament, inviting anglers from across the globe to compete in the Highland capital this September.

The competition will coincide with the Salmon Festival, which is organised to raise awareness of the Atlantic salmon and the contribution it makes to Scotland.

READ MORE: Retired cod wars trawler converted into Ben Nevis BnB

The biannual event is organised by Inverness College UHI and this year takes place from 29 August to 2 September.

Dr Melanie Smith, chair of Scotland’s Salmon Festival steering group and head of research and post-graduate development at lead partner, Inverness College UHI, said: “Atlantic salmon is one of Scotland’s most iconic species.

“Not only does it play a vital role in our rivers, but it is a huge contributor to our economy as a food product, international export and visitor attraction.

“The programme has been designed for all the family, not just academics. Whether you’re already an experienced fly-fisher, simply like the taste of the fish or just want to enjoy the atmosphere, there is an event for everyone to enjoy.

“We’re look forward to welcoming a steady stream people from across the UK and further afield to Inverness for the festival’s second outing.”

Speaking of the Inverness Angling Club Centenary Speycasting Tournament, Club President Graham Mackenzie added: “The club was formed at a meeting on 31 August 1917, so the tournament is an ideal way to mark a significant anniversary.

“It will also recognise the role that the club and the River Ness has played in the development of Speycasting around the world.

“The growing interest in the sport has been clear since the first international tournament was staged at the first Scotland’s Salmon Festival in 2015.

“We have made a strong commitment to developing the casting skills of our 100-plus junior members and the skills that tournament participants will demonstrate will both encourage them and set targets for them to achieve.

“Significantly, this tournament will include a special award for juniors presented by Scottish Ghillie.”

READ MORE: 6 Munro walks with good pubs at the end

The festival’s extensive programme will kick off at Eden Court Theatre with a mini salmon film festival, featuring short features about the fish’s influence on Scotland.

For students and scholars, Inverness College UHI will host a public lecture evening and two-day conference, providing an academic insight into the iconic species.

Entitled “Atlantic Salmon Marine Ecology – Knowns and Unknowns - the symposium has been organised by Professor Eric Verspoor at the Rivers and Lochs Institute (RLI) at Inverness College UHI.

For families, the pinnacle of the week will be the free Bught Park fair with children’s’ activities such as storytelling, electrofishing and casting lessons. There will also be Alexander Grant museum tours where visitors can learn about the famous, record breaking Speycaster.

Founded in 1917, Inverness Angling Club builds on the innovatory skills of members such as the ‘Wizard of the Ness’, Alexander Grant, inventor of the Grant Vibration rod.

There was also John Reidpath, who changed the face of fly tying with the development of the Hairy Mary, the first modern hair wing salmon fly, and John Cathcart, inventor of the famed Black Shrimp.

The achievements of Alexander Grant were celebrated in an international Speycasting tournament in 2015, staged as part of the inaugural Scotland’s Salmon Festival. It attracted 20 Speycasters from the USA, Ireland, Norway, England and Scotland.

The festival has been organised by Inverness College UHI in partnership with the University of the Highlands and Islands Rivers and Lochs Institute, Inverness Angling Club, The Ness District Salmon Fishery Board, Marine Harvest and cbec eco-engineering.

Other sponsors include The Highland Council, Drumossie Hotel, Ness Castle Lodges and Graham’s of Inverness.

Salmon angling makes a significant contribution to the Scottish economy with an estimated spend of £73 million on salmon and sea trout angling in Scotland, with anglers in the Highlands accounting for nearly 50% (£35 million) of this total.

Farmed salmon is Scotland’s largest food export, and Scotland’s fish farms bring an enormous boost to rural areas with estimated economic benefits of over £700million - of which £145m is in the Highlands & Islands.

Salmon tourism is a growing area with salmon centres and observation points around Scotland.

For more information visit www.scotlandsalmonfestival.org

200 Voices: find out more about the people who have shaped Scotland

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "ALISTAIR MUNRO"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4373757.1487775308!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373757.1487775308!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Melanie Smith, of Inverness College UHI, with Graham Mackenzie, Scott Mackenzie and junior casters Fraser Shanks, Jordan Grant and Fraser Munro. Picture: Contributed","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Melanie Smith, of Inverness College UHI, with Graham Mackenzie, Scott Mackenzie and junior casters Fraser Shanks, Jordan Grant and Fraser Munro. Picture: Contributed","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4373757.1487775308!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/ten-portions-of-fruit-and-veg-a-day-cuts-heart-disease-risk-1-4373672","id":"1.4373672","articleHeadline": "Ten portions of fruit and veg a day cuts heart disease risk","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487771837000 ,"articleLead": "

Eating 10 portions of fruit and vegetables every day could significantly reduce a person’s risk of heart disease and cancer, a new study has found.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373671.1487771815!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Researchers found ten portions of fruit or vegetables a day was best defence against heart disease. Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images"} ,"articleBody": "

While eating the recommended five a day still helps reduce disease risk, the highest benefits are seen when people consume 10 portions, researchers found.

The study, published in the International Journal of Epidemiology, also identified which fruit and vegetables provided the greatest protection against disease.

Researchers from Imperial College London analysed data from 95 studies concerning fruit and vegetable intake.

The team found that although even the recommended five portions of fruit and vegetables a day reduced disease risk, the greatest benefit came from eating 800g a day - assuming that 80g is one portion - compared to people who ate none at all.

But even smaller intakes had benefits - a daily intake of two-and-a-half portions was associated with a 16% reduced risk of heart disease, a 4% lower risk of cancer and a 15% reduction in the risk of premature death.

Consuming 10 portions a day was associated with a 24% reduced risk of heart disease, a 33% lower risk of stroke, a 28% reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, a 13% reduced risk of cancer, and a 31% reduction in the risk of dying prematurely.

200 Voices: find out more about the people who have shaped Scotland

The authors estimate that if everyone on the planet ate 10 portions of fruit and vegetables each day then 7.8 million premature deaths could be prevented worldwide.

The research team also found that apples and pears, citrus fruits, salads and green leafy vegetables such as spinach, lettuce and chicory, and cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower may help protect against heart disease, stroke, cardiovascular disease, and early death.

And cancer risk could be reduced by eating green vegetables, such as spinach or green beans, yellow vegetables, such as peppers and carrots, and cruciferous vegetables.

Lead author Dr Dagfinn Aune, from the School of Public Health at Imperial, said: “We wanted to investigate how much fruit and vegetables you need to eat to gain the maximum protection against disease, and premature death.

“Our results suggest that although five portions of fruit and vegetables is good, 10 a day is even better.

“Fruit and vegetables have been shown to reduce cholesterol levels, blood pressure, and to boost the health of our blood vessels and immune system.

“This may be due to the complex network of nutrients they hold.

“For instance they contain many antioxidants, which may reduce DNA damage, and lead to a reduction in cancer risk.

“It is clear from this work that a high intake of fruit and vegetables holds tremendous health benefits, and we should try to increase their intake in our diet.”

Meanwhile, a separate story published in the journal Thorax, found that a fruit and veg-rich diet is linked to much lower risk of chronic lung disease.

Experts assessed information on the health and dietary intakes of more than 44,000 men from Sweden.

During follow-up, almost 2,000 cases of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) were diagnosed.

The authors found that those eating five or more daily servings were 35% less likely to develop lung disease than those eating two or fewer daily servings.

Each additional serving was associated with a 4% lower risk of COPD in former smokers and an 8% lower risk in current smokers.

The British Thoracic Society stressed that people who smoke should know that kicking the habit is the most effective way of reducing their chances of developing COPD.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4373671.1487771815!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373671.1487771815!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Researchers found ten portions of fruit or vegetables a day was best defence against heart disease. Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Researchers found ten portions of fruit or vegetables a day was best defence against heart disease. Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4373671.1487771815!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/scottish-teens-reading-age-up-to-three-years-behind-target-1-4373572","id":"1.4373572","articleHeadline": "Scottish teens reading age up to three years behind target","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487767676000 ,"articleLead": "

Scottish pupils aged 11 to 16 are not reading challenging enough books at secondary-school level, according to research.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373588.1487767961!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Scottish children read well in primary school but their reading age drops by up to three years in secondary school."} ,"articleBody": "

University of Dundee academic Professor Keith Topping carried out a study of the reading habits of about 26,000 Scottish students for online assessment provider Renaissance UK.

He found that primary-school students typically push themselves to read more complex books than secondary-school pupils.

By the age of 11, a pupil’s reading age falls behind their chronological age by one year and when they reach 12-13 their reading age has fallen behind by two years.

When pupils hit 16, their reading age typically falls to at least three years behind, the study found.

This means that many 16-year-old students sitting exams this year will have a reading age of 13, researchers said.

200 Voices: find out more about the people who have shaped Scotland

Prof Topping, who specialises in educational and social research at the university’s school of education, said: “The brain is a muscle that literacy skills help train. As it gets more toned, like all muscles, it needs more exercise.

“Currently, primary schools are exercising it more vigorously by reading more challenging books - we now need to replicate this in secondary schools.

“More discussions between young people about books they are reading should be encouraged.

“I would also encourage all secondary teachers, not just English teachers, to look closely at their pupils’ literacy levels and remember - even the brightest students need to be stretched.”

The findings have been released as part of Renaissance’s 2017 What Kids Are Reading report, which found that the trend was reflected across the UK.

Renaissance managing director Dirk Foch said: “Most primary schools place a large emphasis on developing literacy skills.

“However, this is rarely transferred onto secondary school and, as a result, literacy standards at secondary level are a persistent challenge.

“It is clear that if we are to avert a slide in literacy standards many secondary-school pupils would benefit from dedicated reading-time in secondary school - as demonstrated in another study by Professor Topping, which shows that students make the most progress when they successfully read suitably-challenging books for at least 15 minutes per day.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4373588.1487767961!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373588.1487767961!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Scottish children read well in primary school but their reading age drops by up to three years in secondary school.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Scottish children read well in primary school but their reading age drops by up to three years in secondary school.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4373588.1487767961!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/castle-for-sale-for-less-than-edinburgh-semi-detached-1-4373560","id":"1.4373560","articleHeadline": "Castle for sale for less than Edinburgh semi-detached","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487766724000 ,"articleLead": "

A 19th Century castle that sits in 10 acres of ground has gone on sale for less than the price of a semi-detached house in Edinburgh.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373558.1487766698!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Kilchrist Castle near Campbeltown is being sold for offers over �220,000."} ,"articleBody": "

Kilchrist Castle near Campbeltown, Argyll, is being sold privately by its owners for offers over £220,000.

Owner Roland Luckman, an accountant and stable owner from Birmingham, said he was sad to see it go.

READ MORE: Remote Scottish cottage for sale - complete with private island

He bought the Georgian-era property in February 2003 as a holiday home but has been able to use it less often in recent times.

Mr Luckman said the property now needed some “tlc” and that he hoped new owners would bring it back to its glory.

READ MORE: Castle once used as a pigsty up for sale

Mr Luckman said: “It needs someone to grab it by the tail and do something great with it. It could be a fabulous bijou hotel or a holiday let.

“We are sad to see it go. We love to holiday in Scotland and the castle is in a great area. We love going to watch the seals at Southend and ther are five or six golf courses around Campbeltown.

“It is also nice and close to Machrihanish Airport”

It is understood that the castle is built on the site of an old Abbey believed to have been visited by Robert the Bruce.

The land was once owned by Chief of Clan MacTavish, the sheriff at Campbeltown.

The present castle was built by Sheriff Dugald MacTavish of Dunardry, Writer to the Signet, in 1820 to replace an old crumbling manor house.

Kilchrist has six bedrooms and sits over three storeys and a vaulted lower ground floor.

It has two large reception rooms on the ground floor.

Mr Luckman estimated that the castle, which is B listed, would need around £100,000 worth of repairs to bring it back to its prime, with some of the render damaged.

He added that the interior, while needing modernised, was in “beautiful condition” with each room have a original fireplace.

Curved regency doors were another fine feature, he added.

The castle’s walled gardens include vegetable and fruit plots, paddocks, a burn, mature woodland and a wishing well.

Latest available detailed figures from Registers of Scotland show the average price of a semi-detached house in Edinburgh was £250,000. Flats in the capital sell for an average of £204,000.

200 Voices: find out more about the people who have shaped Scotland

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4373558.1487766698!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373558.1487766698!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Kilchrist Castle near Campbeltown is being sold for offers over �220,000.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Kilchrist Castle near Campbeltown is being sold for offers over �220,000.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4373558.1487766698!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4373559.1487766701!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4373559.1487766701!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "One of two reception rooms at Kilchrist Castle in Argyll. PIC Contributed.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "One of two reception rooms at Kilchrist Castle in Argyll. PIC Contributed.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4373559.1487766701!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"http://www.scotsman.com/news/indyref2-will-alex-salmond-be-a-help-or-hindrance-to-snp-cause-1-4372919","id":"1.4372919","articleHeadline": "Indyref2: Will Alex Salmond be a help or hindrance to SNP cause?","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1487762592000 ,"articleLead": "

It should be an asset that any other campaigns can only dream of. A successful politician, still popular, who can lend executive experience and advice.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4364835.1487762564!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Alex Salmond - A Key figure in Indyref2? Picture: John Devlin"} ,"articleBody": "

But eyebrows are already being raised at what role Alex Salmond could and should play in the campaign that is expected to kick into gear once a second referendum on independence is called.

With that prospect now looking more like a case of when and not if, Salmond’s successor Nicola Sturgeon might be best working out how exactly to keep her mentor in line.

All that leads to the question of exactly how useful the former First Minister can be in overturning the No campaign victory that gave him an uncharacteristic defeat in 2014.

A sore loser?

Alex Salmond doesn’t like losing – possibly because he doesn’t lose very often.

Biographies of the former First Minister often note that he hasn’t lost a personal election since narrowly failing to become Student Council President at St Andrew’s University in the 1970s.

That winning feeling, which Salmond has carried through any number of local and national elections, came to a shuddering end on September 18th 2014.

His initial plea that “One Scotland” would come together to get what is best for the country now seems a distant memory.

Salmond was slammed less than a week after the last referendum for musing that there were other routes to independence, including some that didn’t involve a vote.

The Scottish people were ‘duped’ claims Salmond, referring to a late ‘Vow’ on new powers from Westminster leaders (all three of whom are now gone) that adorned the front page of a Scottish tabloid newspaper.

Despite the promises being deliberately vague, and the Smith Commission substantively enacting them, Salmond has used the ‘Vow’ as something of a crutch to make his defeat somehow easier to handle.

Could the critics who claim Salmond hasn’t been able to accept the 2014 failure have a point? And does that mean he should play less of a role this time round?

Loose lips sink ships

From a warning, to a possibility, to a certainty. In the post-Brexit landscape, Salmond has been far more strident in his language than Nicola Sturgeon.

As Nicola Sturgeon tempers her words and says that while Brexit does represent the material change to Scotland’s circumstance that could trigger a second referendum, nothing is set in stone yet, her predecessor has no such desire to speak diplomatically.

READ MORE: Salmond on the ‘key battleground’ of Indyref2

Even since his return to Westminster, Salmond has wasted no time in hob knobbing with journalists, quaffing pink champagne and holding forth on his favourite subjects.

Sturgeon, who does know that Salmond remains a political heavyweight who could have an impact, would be forgiven for thinking that her old boss would be better seen and not heard.

With friends like these

Another reason that the issue of Salmond’s future role has reared its head once again is his comments just last weekend.

Salmond, unlike Sturgeon, is not bound by the constraints of high office, which typically require the holder to be mindful of where they speak and what they say.

That contrast has rarely been more stark than on Sunday, when Alex Salmond spoke at a ‘Freedom Convoy’ organised by a nascent ‘Yes2’ campaign.

Sturgeon, who as part of the campaign in 2014 that strictly banned ‘the F word’ might have groaned at the image of Salmond atop a children’s slide addressing a crowd that included someone in a saltire-adorned V for Vendetta mask.

Doubling down on his Trump-esque broadsides against the press, Salmond was accused of mimicking the President with a rant about the ‘Yoon Media’ that sparked anger yesterday.

Much like his continued denigration of the BBC, Salmond is in sharp contrast to Sturgeon, who has courted cordial relationships with journalists even among anti-independence outlets.

The A Team

Perhaps restricting the role of Salmond is more of a simple matter of strategy.

The Yes campaign is notable for apparently not having taken any stock of the reasons behind their loss in 2014.

There has been no visible post-mortem. The SNP’s success in the immediate aftermath of the failed push for independence, has, in the eyes of many, negated the need for any examination of just what went wrong two-and-a-half years ago.

To have Salmond assuming anything approaching leadership of an indyref2 campaign is to again ignore the many failings of the campaign that he led in 2014.

A man of Salmond’s talents and continued electoral success is unlikely to be sidelined, even as Nicola Sturgeon looks to build a new consensus for independence.

But to consider him one of the main assets of a new Yes campaign, given his behaviour since 2014, is something that Nicola Sturgeon would be foolish to do.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Ross McCafferty"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4364835.1487762564!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4364835.1487762564!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Alex Salmond - A Key figure in Indyref2? Picture: John Devlin","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Alex Salmond - A Key figure in Indyref2? Picture: John Devlin","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4364835.1487762564!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4371692.1487762569!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4371692.1487762569!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Indy Supporters gathered in Ellon","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Indy Supporters gathered in Ellon","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4371692.1487762569!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} ]}}} ]}