Four things you should know this morning

Caitriona Balfe and Sam Heughan playing Claire Randall and Jamie Fraser in the TV series Outlanders

Caitriona Balfe and Sam Heughan playing Claire Randall and Jamie Fraser in the TV series Outlanders

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IT’S never too early to learn something new, like is the end in sight for Outlander and how likely are we to have a white Christmas?

How much longer will Outlander last?

Author of the popular series, Diana Gabaldon, has revealed that the size of the studio complex created for the hit time-travel show filmed in Scotland has doubled.

The American writer, who is in Scotland to help make an episode of the historical fantasy series based on her books, said there had been a remarkable transformation of the production base since her last visit during the filming of the first season.

Speaking to The Scotsman before an appearance at Stirling Castle, she said four sound stages were now up and running in the converted warehouse in Cumbernauld where the Sony-Starz show is based.

Why is Outlander popular?

Were there Scottish pirates?

For hundreds of years, privateers could be found riding the high seas of the world looking for enemy ships – and cargo to steal, with the full backing of their home government who often received a cut of the profits.

Scotland has a long tradition of privateering and its illegal brother piracy, with the relationship between the two often blurred.

Illegal operators were sometimes hanged – but a blind eye was often turned to the actions of a well-connected few.

Who were they? >>>

Will we be getting a white Christmas?

As winter firmly grips on to Scotland, bookmakers have cut the odds of a white Christmas in 2015.

Temperatures dropped as low as minus 6 degrees in parts of the UK over the weekend, with some areas above 150 metres experiencing snow for the first time this winter.

Traditionally, the definition of a white Christmas in the UK is “a single snowflake falling during the 24 hours of Christmas Day’ at the Met Office building in London” according to the Met office, but many bookmakers will now offer odds of Christmas day snow at a variety of locations across the country.

What odds are being offered? >>>

Three Scottish cities have made the UK’s top ten in terms of job creation.

According to data from jobs website CV-Library, Liverpool saw the biggest increase since the start of the year, with a 45.2 per cent surge in the number of jobs listed.

Edinburgh was close behind in second place, with an increase of 43.3 per cent, while Dundee and Glasgow also made the top ten.

Find out where else is experiencing a job surge? >>>

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