{"JP":[ {"NewsSection":{"name":"uk","detaillevel":"full", "Articles": {"count":25,"detaillevel":"full","articlesList":[ {"article": { "url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/queen-gives-permission-for-duke-of-york-to-step-back-from-public-duties-following-epstein-criticism-1-5049700","id":"1.5049700","articleHeadline": "Queen gives permission for Duke of York to 'step back from public duties' following Epstein criticism","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574272966873 ,"articleLead": "The Queen has given permission for the Duke of York to \"step back from public duties for the foreseeable future\" amid criticism over his relationship with Jeffrey Epstein, the duke said in a statement.","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049699.1574272860!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The Duke of York also said he was "willing to help any appropriate law enforcement agency with their investigations, if required" over the Epstein probe."} ,"articleBody": "

The Duke of York also said he was "willing to help any appropriate law enforcement agency with their investigations, if required" over the Epstein probe.

In his statement, Andrew said: "It has become clear to me over the last few days that the circumstances relating to my former association with Jeffrey Epstein has become a major disruption to my family's work and the valuable work going on in the many organisations and charities that I am proud to support.

"Therefore, I have asked Her Majesty if I may step back from public duties for the foreseeable future, and she has given her permission."

The duke added: "I continue to unequivocally regret my ill-judged association with Jeffrey Epstein. His suicide has left many unanswered questions, particularly for his victims, and I deeply sympathise with everyone who has been affected and wants some form of closure.

"I can only hope that, in time, they will be able to rebuild their lives.

"Of course, I am willing to help any appropriate law enforcement agency with their investigations, if required."

READ MORE - Prince Andrew likely to be sidelined after car-crash Epstein interview

" ,"byline": {"email": "newsdeskts@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049699.1574272860!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049699.1574272860!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The Duke of York also said he was "willing to help any appropriate law enforcement agency with their investigations, if required" over the Epstein probe.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The Duke of York also said he was "willing to help any appropriate law enforcement agency with their investigations, if required" over the Epstein probe.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049699.1574272860!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/columnists/artificial-intelligence-and-big-data-vital-to-uk-s-nuclear-deterrent-rear-admiral-john-weale-1-5049338","id":"1.5049338","articleHeadline": "Artificial intelligence and ‘big data’ vital to UK’s nuclear deterrent – Rear Admiral John Weale","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574269200000 ,"articleLead": "

Glasgow Science Centre’s forthcoming innovation exhibition, Idea No59, should encourage everyone to consider how society is being shaped by technology and how we need to inspire the next generation of experts in STEM subjects, writes Rear Admiral John Weale.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049337.1574252899!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "A Vanguard class nuclear submarines in the dock at HM Naval Base Clyde (Picture: Jane Barlow/PA Wire)"} ,"articleBody": "

HM Naval Base Clyde will become the home to all of the UK’s submarines by 2020, meaning that we must have the right people with the right innovation skills, in the right place at the right time.

I have been a submariner for 32 years and sadly, the time has come for me to move on from the post of Rear Admiral.

The Faslane base on which I serve is a small site, constrained by sea to the west and road and rail on the east. However, with 11 submarines and 8,500 people with their families, we have an abundance of ambition.

This year has been a year of delivery, with the arrival of two new submarines and the development of a new submarine escape school. An increase in personnel means we are building accommodation blocks that will likely be on a par with the number on any large UK university campus.

READ MORE: How Google DeepMind’s AlphaZero chess program could shape our future

READ MORE: Emergency at sea – the crisis on a nuclear sub that had to stay secret

Here I have two key jobs; the first is to perform my duties as Flag Officer for Scotland and Northern Ireland and the second is to serve as Head of the Royal Navy submarine force.

The overall objective of both has been to maintain the status of the submarine service as a world-leading fighting force, in part by exploiting new technologies.

Outside help not an option

Our Vanguard class submarines have been an essential part of the Continuous At Sea Deterrent that has been in place for 50 years and is more technologically complex than any space shuttle.

These impressive Vanguard vessels can carry a nuclear weapon in a canister, surrounded by high-pressure systems. We then place Royal Navy personnel in these submarines and ask them to live in it, often for months at a time.

To live in such an environment, where outside help is not an option, all our personnel must harbour first-class technical skills and crucially, possess an ability to problem solve.

If our branch of the armed forces is to be at the forefront of emerging technologies, then we must work collaboratively with a myriad of organisations. This transformation is about engaging more broadly with the wider science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) community to gain a competitive advantage. Any tech start-up will advise you to do that.

Society being shaped by technology

That is why we are delighted support Glasgow Science Centre forthcoming innovation exhibition, Idea No59. When Idea No59 opens in March 2020, I am confident it will encourage everyone to consider how society is being shaped by technology and innovation and inspire the next generation of problem-solvers and creative thinkers.

Artificial intelligence and ‘big data’ are two emerging trends that I am pleased the exhibition will explore. Warships can suck in huge amounts of data and evidently it takes time to work out equations with pen and paper. A computer completes this process much more quickly and we want the most efficient decision-making process for our submarines and crew to deliver its task.

We are getting good at data management, but we are still on a journey. So much of what we do is automated, including the use of drones to improve maintenance, but that in itself brings complexities.

For decades, physics and maths has been helping us to understand the oceans and advanced computer systems. Now we need people with a good grasp of big-data management and artificial intelligence.

The characteristics associated with innovators are precisely what we are looking for in Royal Navy personnel. When you are at sea, you can’t give up. The ocean is not your friend.

The Royal Navy must remain relevant with STEM and its skills to allow us to train and educate a workforce to achieve their ambitions and our aims. I have every confidence that we will continue to rise to these challenges.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "John Weale"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049337.1574252899!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049337.1574252899!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "A Vanguard class nuclear submarines in the dock at HM Naval Base Clyde (Picture: Jane Barlow/PA Wire)","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "A Vanguard class nuclear submarines in the dock at HM Naval Base Clyde (Picture: Jane Barlow/PA Wire)","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049337.1574252899!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/boris-johnson-hints-tories-are-planning-big-changes-to-national-insurance-1-5049538","id":"1.5049538","articleHeadline": "Boris Johnson hints Tories are planning big changes to National Insurance","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574265691771 ,"articleLead": "Boris Johnson has hinted the Tories are planning a big cut in National Insurance (NI) for low-paid workers when they unveil their General Election manifesto.","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049537.1574264364!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Boris Johnson has hinted the Tories are planning a big cut in National Insurance (NI) for low-paid workers when they unveil their General Election manifesto."} ,"articleBody": "

The Prime Minister appeared to blurt out the plan to raise the threshold at which workers start paying NI from £8,628 a year to £12,000, during a campaign visit to Teesside.

Speaking during a question-and-answer session with staff at an engineering plant in Middlesbrough, he said the Conservatives were committed to a policy of "low tax for... working people".

He went on: "If you look at what we're doing and what I've said in the last few days, we are going to be cutting National Insurance up to £12,000, we are going to be making sure that we cut business rates for small businesses.

READ MORE - Potentially deadly tick-borne parasite found in Scotland for the first time

"We are cutting tax for working people."

Mr Johnson originally raised the idea of upping the threshold for NI contributions during the Conservative leadership contest last summer - although at that stage he did not put a figure on it.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) calculated that for each £1,000 that it was raised, 600,000 workers would be lifted out of NI altogether.

If just employee and self-employed thresholds were lifted the cost to the Exchequer would be £3 billion a year rising to £4.5 billion if the employer threshold was raised as well.

To raise the threshold to £12,500 - as Mr Johnson's then leadership rival Dominic Raab was proposing - was put at £11 billion, rising to £17 billion if the employer threshold was included.

The IFS said that 2.4 million workers would be taken out of NI.

READ MORE - General Election 2019: Nicola Sturgeon warns 'Scotland’s future at risk''

" ,"byline": {"email": "claire.mckim@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049537.1574264364!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049537.1574264364!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Boris Johnson has hinted the Tories are planning a big cut in National Insurance (NI) for low-paid workers when they unveil their General Election manifesto.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Boris Johnson has hinted the Tories are planning a big cut in National Insurance (NI) for low-paid workers when they unveil their General Election manifesto.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049537.1574264364!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/health/mother-of-three-who-died-during-brazilian-bum-lift-operation-was-paranoid-about-her-body-inquest-hears-1-5049429","id":"1.5049429","articleHeadline": "Mother-of-three who died during Brazilian bum lift operation 'was paranoid about her body' inquest hears","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574261415629 ,"articleLead": "The partner of a mother-of-three who died during a \"Brazilian butt lift\" operation was told following her death that the procedure was a \"guessing game\", an inquest has heard.","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049427.1574259134!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Theresa Hall, the mother of deceased Leah Cambridge. Picture: SWNS"} ,"articleBody": "

.
Leah Cambridge, 29, was keen to have the work done as she was "paranoid about her body" and had seen it advertised on Instagram but was unaware of the risks involved, Wakefield Coroner's Court heard on Wednesday.

The beautician, a mother to three young boys, travelled to Izmir in Turkey last August to have the "butt lift" done but died during the operation, the inquest was told.

Her partner, Scott Franks, said he travelled to see her body and meet those who conducted the operation as soon as he heard she had died.

He told the inquest that the surgeon who undertook the procedure, Dr Ali Uckan, had appeared "nervous and scared" when they spoke a day after Miss Cambridge's death.

Mr Franks told the inquest the surgeon said of the operation: "It's a guessing game, you can't see where you are going into."

He said Dr Uckan's "exact words" were: "It's a matter of life and death when you are doing it."

READ MORE - Potentially deadly tick-borne parasite found in Scotland for the first time

The surgeon said in a statement that he had performed the procedure "in the region of a thousand times", with no complications like those suffered by Miss Cambridge.

Asked about his reaction to his partner's death, Mr Franks said: "You don't think it's real, and I still don't now.

"You never expect something like this to happen to yourself."

Mr Franks said his partner had been keen to have the operation - which reshapes the buttocks by transferring fat from areas including the stomach and back - and had saved up thousands of pounds after he refused to pay for it.

He added that he was "not very happy" when Miss Cambridge, from Leeds, told him she had put down a deposit for the surgery through Elite Aftercare, a company which acts as a go-between linking clients and surgeons.

Choosing to stay at home and look after their children while his partner underwent the procedure, he said he became panicked after searching Google for information and discovering an article on fatalities resulting from the surgery.

READ MORE - Scottish police confirm body found in search for 'loving family man' who never returned home from work

The court heard how Mr Franks's grief was compounded when his solicitors received a letter from Elite falsely claiming Miss Cambridge had died after taking "illicit drugs".

Giving evidence, Miss Cambridge's mother Theresa Hall said she and her daughter had flown to Turkey overnight on August 26 last year.

She said they were taken to the hospital upon arrival and handed over £6,500 for the operation.

Miss Hall said that after Miss Cambridge was taken down to theatre, she fell asleep, and was woken by a member of staff who said there had been "a complication" during the operation and that the patient had died.

Breaking down at the end of her sentence, Mis Hall told the inquest: "One of them put a tablet in my mouth and gave me a drink of water."

Miss Hall added that after taking the pill she felt dazed and sleepy and, after being taken to a hotel, woke up the following morning.

Dr Lisa Barker, a consultant histopathologist for Leeds Teaching Hospitals, said Miss Cambridge died after fat entered her circulatory system and eventually blocked the pulmonary artery to the lungs.

The inquest, which is due to last three days, continues.

" ,"byline": {"email": "claire.mckim@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049427.1574259134!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049427.1574259134!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Theresa Hall, the mother of deceased Leah Cambridge. Picture: SWNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Theresa Hall, the mother of deceased Leah Cambridge. Picture: SWNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049427.1574259134!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049428.1574259136!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049428.1574259136!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Scott Franks, the fiance of Leah Cambridge outside Wakefield Coroner's Court. Picture: SWNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Scott Franks, the fiance of Leah Cambridge outside Wakefield Coroner's Court. Picture: SWNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049428.1574259136!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/general-election-2019-lib-dems-put-stopping-brexit-at-the-heart-of-their-campaign-1-5049392","id":"1.5049392","articleHeadline": "General Election 2019: Lib Dems put stopping Brexit at the heart of their campaign","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574257796000 ,"articleLead": "

The Liberal Democrats have put stopping Brexit at the heart of their General Election platform as they sought to underline their claim to be the party of Remain.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049391.1574257791!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson said that their manifesto will focus on stopping Brexit."} ,"articleBody": "

The party's manifesto, published on Wednesday, holds out the prospect of a £50 billion \"Remain bonus\" to be spent on public services and tackling inequalities if they succeed in keeping Britain in the EU.

It sets out plans to tackle the climate change \"emergency\" through generating 80 per cent of the country's electricity through renewables by 2030, provide free childcare from the age of nine months, and recruit 20,000 more teachers.

Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson said: \"This manifesto is a bold plan to build a brighter future for our country, and that starts with stopping Brexit.

\"Labour and the Conservatives can't offer the country a brighter future because they both want Brexit. We know that will be bad for our economy, bad for our NHS and bad for our environment.

• READ MORE: Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson condemns 'very fake story' she abused squirrels
\"Our politics has been dominated by the two, tired old parties for too long. This election provides an opportunity to change the future of our country and build a brighter future with the Liberal Democrats.\"

The manifesto reaffirms the party's commitment to end the Brexit process by revoking Article 50 if there is a majority Lib Dem government following the election on December 12.

If not, the manifesto says they would continue to campaign for a \"people's vote\" in a fresh referendum with on option to stay in the EU on the ballot paper.

• READ MORE: My constituents are proud I’m taking on Boris, says Jo Swinson
\"The election of a Liberal Democrat majority government on a clear stop Brexit platform will provide a democratic mandate to stop this mess, revoke Article 50 and stay in the EU,\" the manifesto says.

\"In other circumstances, we will continue to fight for a people's vote with the option to stay in the EU, and in that vote we would passionately campaign to keep the UK in the EU.\"

The Lib Dems argue that staying in the EU would generate a £50 billion \"Remain bonus\" over five years, through higher levels of growth.

They estimate the economy will be 1.9 per cent larger in 2024-25 than it would be under Boris Johnson's Brexit deal, giving them extra funding to spend on their priorities in the years ahead.

They include a target of doubling the amount of power generated through renewables by 2030 while investing £15 billion over five years in retro-fitting 26 million homes with insulation and zero-carbon heating.

The party says it would increase opportunities through providing 35 hours a week free childcare for all two to four year-olds - with the offer extended to those aged nine to 24 months where the parents are working.

At the same time the party says it would give all adults £10,000 to spend on skills and training throughout their lives through the creation of a new \"skills wallet\".

The manifesto promises to reverse frontline budget cuts for schools in England since 2105 with an emergency cash injection of £4.6 billion next year.

It says that by 2024/25, they will be spending £10.6 billion more on schools than is currently being spent - enabling them to increase the number of teachers by 20,000 over five years.

The party is also promising that mental health services would be treated with the same urgency as physical health with a £11 billion cash injection over the lifetime of the parliament.

" ,"byline": {"email": "sean.murphy@jpimedia.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049391.1574257791!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049391.1574257791!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson said that their manifesto will focus on stopping Brexit.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson said that their manifesto will focus on stopping Brexit.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049391.1574257791!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/people/sponsors-flee-embattled-prince-andrew-1-5049046","id":"1.5049046","articleHeadline": "Sponsors flee embattled Prince Andrew","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574250000000 ,"articleLead": "

The Duke of York’s role in public life has suffered further major setbacks with another multimillion-pound business cutting ties and universities reviewing their association with him.

" ,"articleBody": "

Standard Chartered has joined KPMG in deciding not to renew its sponsorship of Andrew’s Pitch@Palace scheme. London Metropolitan University is to consider the duke’s role as patron, while a student panel at Huddersfield University has passed a motion to lobby the duke to resign as its chancellor.

Amid the unravelling of the duke’s position, former home secretary Jacqui Smith made fresh claims of racism, saying Andrew made “racist comments about Arabs that were unbelievable” at a Buckingham Palace state banquet.

The Queen’s second son is facing the embarrassing prospect of charities and institutions he is associated with distancing themselves after his controversial Newsnight interview.

Andrew discussed his friendship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, who took his own life in jail while facing sex trafficking charges.

The duke has faced criticism and been accused of having a lack of empathy with Epstein’s victims and a lack of remorse for his friendship with the disgraced financier.

A spokesman for Standard Chartered said: “We can confirm we are not renewing our sponsorship of Pitch@Palace for commercial reasons once our current agreement terminates in December.”

London Metropolitan University said the duke’s role as its patron will be considered at its board of governors meeting next Tuesday.

A spokesman added: “The university opposes all forms of discrimination, abuse, human trafficking and any activity that is contrary to the university’s values.”

At Huddersfield University, the motion said: “We as students at the University of Huddersfield and members of Huddersfield Students’ Union should not be represented by a man with ties to organised child sexual exploitation.”

AstraZeneca’s three-year partnership with Pitch@Palace is due to expire at the end of this year and is being reviewed, and Outward Bound Trust, of which Andrew is patron, is to hold a board meeting in the next few days to discuss the matter.

Meanwhile, a former home secretary has said she was left “slack-jawed” by alleged racist comments by the Duke of York.

Jacqui Smith, who served at the Home Office under Tony Blair, said Andrew made racist comments about Arab people during a state dinner. She said Andrew’s remarks to her “involved a comment about camels” and were “as worse as you could imagine”.

Ms Smith said: “I met him several times, including once at a state banquet where, after dinner, I and my husband and another Labour minister had a drink with him. I have to say the conversation left us slack-jawed with the things that he felt it was appropriate to say.”

It comes after former Downing Street aide Rohan Silva claimed he once heard Andrew use the expression “n***** in the woodpile”.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/columnists/general-election-the-life-and-death-issue-that-s-virtually-ignored-martyn-mclaughlin-1-5048751","id":"1.5048751","articleHeadline": "General election: The life-and-death issue that’s virtually ignored – Martyn McLaughlin","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574244138000 ,"articleLead": "

The homelessness crisis should be front and centre in the general election campaign, writes Martyn McLaughlin.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048750.1574244133!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The number of homeless people has been rising for several years (Picture: Lisa Ferguson)"} ,"articleBody": "

With the trickle of election leaflets dropping through letterboxes quickly becoming a barrage, the tactics being employed by parties has not escaped the attention of ordinary voters.

Some candidates have chosen to include only minimal references to the party they are standing for, while many more devote the unsolicited correspondence to attacking their political rivals.

But perhaps what has most conspicuous by its absence is any attempt to set out policy pledges in black and white.

The leaflets are, almost without exception, devoted to constitutional affairs. These are issues of fundamental importance, but the ­contracting nature of political debate in Scotland and the UK means that issues just as crucial – indeed, ones that are a matter of life and death – are being overshadowed. There is no better example of this than homelessness. It is an escalating crisis which occupies the periphery of the campaign.

In 2018/19, 36,465 homeless ­applications were made across Scotland. That is the highest number in five years, and the ­second successive year the figure has crept upwards. Similarly, the number of households assessed as homeless by councils stood at 29,894 in 2018/19, the highest number since 2013/14 and part of a four-year-long increase.

READ MORE: Man dies in Glasgow after being found in freezing city centre car park

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Such vast figures, striking though they may be, blunt the sharper ­edges of the suffering. Every 18 minutes, a household in Scotland becomes homeless, and every day, the same plight befalls 38 children. That is not good enough. It cannot be good enough.

Yes, there has been a downward trend in the number of homeless applications and assessments in the decade since the recession tore ­families and communities apart.

Boris Johnson’s track record

This encouraging direction of travel was aided in large part by the local authority-wide Housing Options, which not only utilises ­private rented accommodation as well as council and housing association properties, but attempts to identify and provide support for people with underlying issues such as mental health conditions and crippling debt. Even so, the efficacy of such ­measures has proven ­limited. The trend, once again, is taking a turn for the worse.

The same miserable slew of ­statistics is evident at a UK ­level, where 319,837 people are now classed as homeless, a year-on-year rise of 12,607. And if, perhaps by dint of blunt head trauma, you expect Boris Johnson to be the very chap to solve this, consider for a moment his own record on the issue.

It is ten years since he railed against the scandal of people ­having to sleep on the streets of London. As that city’s mayor, he promised to end the indignity endured by the capital’s rough-sleeping population – which then numbered 3,673 – within three years.

You can probably guess what happened next. By the end of those three years, the number of rough sleepers had spiked by 60 per cent, and today it stands at 8,855.

Given his unique capacity for callousness and self-interest, Mr Johnson’s reasons for ignoring this shameful trend should be self-evident. Even so, it is simultaneously remarkable and predictable that such a crisis is not one of the most prominent issues in the general election campaign. The gaping maws of Brexit and #indyref2 devour all around them, of course, but it has been dispiriting to see so little in the way of substantive policy or debate over what is, and should be, a basic human right.

Labour’s £10bn pledge

The only party to have addressed the issue with any kind of prominence is Scottish Labour, which has pledged to invest £10 billion from a new UK-wide pot known as a National Transformation Fund to build 120,000 council and social homes in Scotland over the next decade.

Its promise to invest such significant sums is welcome and timely, given there are only 314,000 local authority homes in Scotland, and nearly half as many – a staggering 156,000 households – on waiting lists or transfer lists.

But even this headline figure is problematic, in that it fails to address the fact that funding decisions for housebuilding lies with the devolved administration. Then there is Labour’s claim that this money would end homelessness “once and for all”, an announcement that, at best, seems naive.

Bricks and mortar alone will not tackle the complex, underlying drivers of homelessness. Perhaps Labour know this, and simply take the view that structural reform is not a snazzy enough soundbite to generate headlines.

As any practitioner working in the social housing sector will attest, it is not soundbites that matter. It is hard-won legislative amendments, evidence-based approaches, and partnership working.

With the vast majority of the parties yet to publish their manifestos, there is a chance that such issues will form part of their campaign, but they will not be front and centre.

The question of the harm being caused by the primacy of constitutional politics in our national debate is one being asked before the nation goes to the polls, but it will remain valid in the weeks and months ­afterwards.

No one realistically expects the big ticket issues to be resolved any time soon, so Europe and the Union will continue to dominate. The repercussions of that are troubling, and do not bode well for the kind of rigorous, committed debate required to bring about lasting change.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Martyn McLaughlin"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5048750.1574244133!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048750.1574244133!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The number of homeless people has been rising for several years (Picture: Lisa Ferguson)","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The number of homeless people has been rising for several years (Picture: Lisa Ferguson)","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5048750.1574244133!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/columnists/why-some-labour-voters-plan-to-vote-tory-in-bid-to-save-their-party-murdo-fraser-1-5049017","id":"1.5049017","articleHeadline": "Why some Labour voters plan to vote Tory in bid to save their party – Murdo Fraser","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574243451000 ,"articleLead": "

Council by-elections and polls suggest Labour risks going the way of the dinosaurs as traditionally left-wing voters hold their noses to back the Tories because of fears over the Union or in the hope that the party will pick a more moderate leader after a big defeat, writes Conservative MSP Murdo Fraser.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049160.1574243443!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. Picture: JPIMedia"} ,"articleBody": "

On my son’s bedroom wall is a poster depicting a number of dinosaurs. It is a daily reminder of these great beasts who ruled the Earth for millions of years, dominating all forms of life. And yet, today, they are all gone, and the only trace we find of them is when we dig up the odd fossil.

It is hard to find a better metaphor for the current state of the Scottish Labour Party. For most of my lifetime, Scottish Labour was the Tyrannosaurus rex of the political world, striking fear into political opponents.

The first-past-the-post voting system meant that Westminster elections throughout the 80s and 90s were dominated by Labour, who gave us giants like John Smith, Robin Cook and Gordon Brown.

How different is the picture today. In the 2015 general election, Labour lost all but one of their Scottish seats at Westminster. At the Holyrood election in the following year, they were relegated to third place at Holyrood behind the Conservatives.

READ MORE: Scottish Secretary Alister Jack backs indyref2 ‘mandate’ if SNP wins 2021 Holyrood majority

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The trend continues. In recent council by-elections across Scotland, the Labour vote was in freefall, collapsing to just five per cent in last month’s contest in Bridge of Don, Aberdeen. And, last week, in a by-election in Dunfermline Central, in what was once the South Fife fiefdom of Gordon Brown, the Labour vote share was cut in half to just 13.5 per cent, with the party trailing in a poor fourth behind SNP, Conservatives and Liberal Democrats.

Right across Scotland, the story is the same. The Labour vote is collapsing, with former supporters switching either to the Scottish Conservatives, or in places to Liberal Democrats, depending on how strongly they feel about either independence or Brexit.

Four policies in two days

Scottish Conservatives have made it quite clear that our primary message in the general election is our opposition to a second independence referendum. Unsurprisingly, this is attractive to the majority of Scottish voters who voted ‘No’ in 2014, and do not wish to have to go through that experience again.

And that group includes a large chunk of former Labour supporters, who are now upset and confused by their own party’s swithering stance on this most vital of issues. During Jeremy Corbyn’s visit to Scotland last week, he contrived to announce four quite distinct positions on the second independence referendum, in just 48 hours.

Firstly, he pledged that indyref2 would be ruled out for the whole five years of the next Westminster parliament. This was quickly contradicted, however, in a briefing from his aides, who said that position would change if the SNP won the majority in the 2021 Holyrood election.

Only hours later, the position had shifted again, saying that the referendum would not happen within “the early years of a Labour government”. The following day, this was refined to no referendum within the first two years of Labour being in power at Westminster, a position which was repeated by Corbyn in television interviews on Sunday.

Observers might wonder why Labour simply do not take the easy option, and rule out a second independence referendum for the next parliament, as the Conservatives have done. But Labour have to keep the door open to a possible coalition deal, or at least confidence-and-supply, with the SNP, in the event that they are the largest party after the general election. Ruling out indyref2 indefinitely will make that deal much harder to do. So the narrow partisan interests of Labour are being put ahead of the future of the Union.

No fans of Johnson

In light of all this confusion, it is not surprising that there is despair within Labour ranks in Scotland. Corbyn, with his warmness towards terrorist groups in the past, and with his extreme left-of-centre views, was always regarded as an electoral liability even before his swithering on the referendum question.

Labour’s longest serving MP in Scotland, Ian Murray, does not mention Corbyn at all on his election literature, and indeed it is a struggle even to see the word “Labour” on his leaflets. It speaks volumes that the most successful Scottish Labour politician of this generation views his re-election prospects as enhanced by putting as much distance as possible between himself and his party leader.

We have also seen two former Labour MPs in the shape of Michael McCann and Tom Harris now stating they cannot vote for Labour in the forthcoming general election, and in the case of Tom Harris even going so far as to say he would vote Conservative, as the only party that should be trusted to defend the Union.

In contrast to this confusion, the Conservatives have been entirely clear. Boris Johnson has made it plain that if he is Prime Minister he will not grant consent to a second independence referendum. Pro-Union voters in Scotland can support the Conservatives on 12 December, in the confidence that a Conservative government will not be subjecting Scotland to a re-run of 2014, a referendum which, we should always be reminding ourselves, the SNP told us would be a “once-in-a-lifetime” event.

I have personally met a large number of former Labour voters who, whilst being no particular fans of Boris Johnson, will in this coming election hold their noses and vote Conservative, because right at this point in our history the future of the Union is the overriding political issue of the day. I have met other traditional Labour voters who simply cannot bring themselves to support Jeremy Corbyn as Prime Minister, and who will be making a tactical vote for the Conservatives in the hope that a crushing defeat for Labour nationally will bring the party to its senses, and see the election of a more moderate figure as Labour leader in the future.

Whatever their reasons, the opinion polls confirm the results of recent council by-elections, in that Scottish Labour are heading for a humiliating fourth place in the upcoming general election. It could well be Scottish Labour’s worst election result in a century. And they will only have themselves to blame, with a deeply unpopular leader, and a highly confused position on the constitution.

The dinosaurs might well have ruled the Earth for millions of years, but they are now all extinct. Scottish Labour may well be heading the same way.

Murdo Fraser is a Conservative MSP for Mid-Scotland and Fife

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049160.1574243443!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049160.1574243443!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. Picture: JPIMedia","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. Picture: JPIMedia","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049160.1574243443!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049016.1574243446!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049016.1574243446!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Once Labour strode like Tyrannosaurus rex across Scotland's political landscape, but now it could be heading for its worst election result in a century (Picture: Torsten Blackwood/AFP/Getty Images)","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Once Labour strode like Tyrannosaurus rex across Scotland's political landscape, but now it could be heading for its worst election result in a century (Picture: Torsten Blackwood/AFP/Getty Images)","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049016.1574243446!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/health/almost-half-a-million-young-people-worried-about-their-feelings-not-asking-anyone-for-help-1-5049154","id":"1.5049154","articleHeadline": "Almost half a million young people worried about their feelings 'not asking anyone for help'","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574242533000 ,"articleLead": "

Almost half a million young people who are worried about their feelings or behaviour are not asking anyone for help, according to a children's charity.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049153.1574242528!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Emergency services (police and fire services) and mental health charities also saw a low percentage of children turning to them for help."} ,"articleBody": "

A survey of 2,300 people aged 10 to 17 found 58 per cent had asked for help because of concerns about their feelings, while 8 per cent indicated they had not sought help even though they did have worries.

Applying their results to 2018 mid-year population estimates by the Office for National Statistics, The Children's Society estimated that more than 464,000 children of this age in England, Scotland and Wales may have worries about their feelings and behaviour but have not sought help.

The charity warned that the mental health of these children could be at risk of deteriorating.

The research study found that of those who asked for help, three in four (77 per cent) said they had spoken to close family such as siblings or parents, followed by 38 per cent who were helped by friends and 36 per cent who were supported by an adult at school such as a teacher.

The data also showed that emergency services (police and fire services) and mental health charities saw a low percentage of children turning to them for help.

A 17-year-old participant told the charity: \"I used to self-harm before, and it was like a way of me getting out the emotions because I never used to ask people for help...I thought it was something wrong with me so like I wouldn't want to ask for help.\"

The national charity said it believed a \"fear of stigma and judgment\" and a lack of knowledge about both mental health and the support services available were some of the \"many\" reasons that could contribute to young people not wanting to ask for help with their mental health.

Mark Russell, chief executive of The Children's Society, said: \"The voices of children matter and if any child is having worries about their feelings or behaviour they should not have to suffer in silence. It's a travesty that such vast numbers of children who clearly need help are not telling anyone at all.

\"We know that despite progress to break down stigma it is still a major barrier for young people. There could also be many other reasons that children aren't seeking help due to practical issues like nowhere they can go locally or no transport.\"

Earlier this year, the charity said it had found that around 110,000 10 to 17-year-olds were being turned away from mental health services each year because their problems were not deemed \"serious\" enough.

\"It's vital children get help at an early stage to stop issues from spiralling,\" said Mr Russell.

\"The next government needs to prioritise access to immediate emotional and mental health support for all children through their school or in their community so they can drop-in and chat when they need to.\"

" ,"byline": {"email": "sean.murphy@jpimedia.co.uk" ,"author": "Sean Murphy"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049153.1574242528!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049153.1574242528!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Emergency services (police and fire services) and mental health charities also saw a low percentage of children turning to them for help.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Emergency services (police and fire services) and mental health charities also saw a low percentage of children turning to them for help.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049153.1574242528!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/people/uk-ticket-holder-has-won-105-million-euromillions-jackpot-1-5049140","id":"1.5049140","articleHeadline": "UK ticket holder has won £105 million EuroMillions jackpot","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574241217000 ,"articleLead": "

A UK ticket-holder has won the £105 million EuroMillions jackpot on the 25th anniversary of the first National Lottery draw.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049139.1574241212!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The previous biggest UK winners were Colin and Chris Weir, from Largs in North Ayrshire, Scotland, who won 161 million in July 2011."} ,"articleBody": "

The winning main EuroMillions numbers were 08, 10, 15, 30 and 42 and the Lucky Star numbers were 04 and 06.

Andy Carter, senior winners' adviser at the National Lottery, said: \"On our 25th birthday, one very lucky ticket-holder has scooped tonight's entire £105 million EuroMillions jackpot.

\"Players across the country are now urged to check their tickets to see if they have won big.

\"Tonight's big winner has scooped the sixth EuroMillions jackpot banked in the UK this year.\"

Someone also became a millionaire by matching the Millionaire Maker code ZMSF62402.

A UK ticket-holder won a £170 million EuroMillions jackpot in October, making them the UK's biggest ever winner.

The previous biggest UK winners were Colin and Chris Weir, from Largs in North Ayrshire, Scotland, who won £161 million in July 2011.

A £123 million jackpot was won by a UK ticket-holder in June and a UK winner scooped £38 million in the EuroMillions in April.

Ade Goodchild, from Hereford, bagged £71 million on March 15 and Patrick and Frances Connolly, from Northern Ireland, won £114.9 million on New Year's Day.

" ,"byline": {"email": "sean.murphy@jpimedia.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049139.1574241212!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049139.1574241212!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The previous biggest UK winners were Colin and Chris Weir, from Largs in North Ayrshire, Scotland, who won 161 million in July 2011.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The previous biggest UK winners were Colin and Chris Weir, from Largs in North Ayrshire, Scotland, who won 161 million in July 2011.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049139.1574241212!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/arts-and-culture/music/uk-music-industry-contributed-more-than-5-billion-to-the-nation-s-economy-last-year-1-5049127","id":"1.5049127","articleHeadline": "UK music industry contributed more than £5 billion to the nation's economy last year","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574239937000 ,"articleLead": "

The UK music industry contributed more than £5 billion to the nation's economy last year, according to a report.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049126.1574239933!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ed Sheeran, Dua Lipa (pictured) and Sam Smith are among the British artists driving a surge in exports as the UK music industry."} ,"articleBody": "

Ed Sheeran, Dua Lipa and Sam Smith are among the British artists driving a surge in exports as the UK music industry grew across every sector in 2018, UK Music's new Music By Numbers report said.

The study said the total contribution of the UK music industry to the economy last year was £5.2 billion, up from £4.5 billion the previous year.

The total export revenue of the British music industry was £2.7 billion, up from £2.6 billion.

Despite the challenges facing the industry, such as concerns about Brexit, rising business rates and issues of enforcing copyright in an increasingly complex online market, the live music sector and employment in the industry have also continued to flourish.

Employment in the industry hit an all-time high of more than 190,000 jobs in 2018, with 139,352 in the music creators sector, which includes musicians, singers, composers, songwriters, lyricists, producers and engineers.

The live sector made a contribution of £1.1 billion to the economy as fans filled venues across the country despite the absence of the Glastonbury Festival, which took a break last year when the data for the report was collected.

This was a growth of 10 per cent from £991 million the previous year.

The numbers were boosted by a rise in the number of other major festivals such as TRNSMT and Sunday Sessions in Scotland.

Music tourism - which involves people travelling from within the UK and overseas to attend a live music event - has also grown. It contributed a £4.5 billion spend to the UK economy, up 12% from £4 billion.

UK Music chief executive Michael Dugher said the findings show the industry \"is in great shape and continuing to lead the world\".

He added: \"The figures are hugely encouraging and show that, as well as enriching the lives of millions of people, music makes an incredible contribution to the UK's economy.

\"Live music is now at a record high and continues to draw millions of fans from both the UK and abroad to our arenas and smaller venues alike.

\"Music exports are another amazing success story with the best of British creative talent being showcased across the globe.

\"However, this is not a time for complacency. We face many challenges to ensure we keep our music industry vibrant, diverse and punching above its weight.

\"We need to do more to protect grassroots venues by helping them combat soaring business rates. We need to nurture the talent pipeline, including by reversing the decline of music in education, so that children from every background have access to music.\"

Mr Dugher said music creators need to get \"fair rewards for their content\" and must not be \"ripped off by big tech\".

\"And we urgently need to ensure that the impact of Brexit doesn't put in jeopardy the free movement of talent, just at the time when we should be looking outwards and backing the best of British talent right across the world,\" he added.

In the report's foreword, Culture Secretary Nicky Morgan hailed \"exciting new artists like Sam Fender, Dave and Little Simz\", who are achieving \"great success, and the figures in this report are testament to the outstanding creativity of our world-leading artists\".

Mrs Morgan said: \"We need to work together to ensure this success continues,\" adding: \"We know there are also some specific challenges for the music industry.

\"From protecting intellectual property to safeguarding the grassroots sector and growing the talent pipeline, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport will continue working with UK Music to allow this country's music industry to grow and flourish.\"

" ,"byline": {"email": "sean.murphy@jpimedia.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049126.1574239933!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049126.1574239933!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Ed Sheeran, Dua Lipa (pictured) and Sam Smith are among the British artists driving a surge in exports as the UK music industry.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Ed Sheeran, Dua Lipa (pictured) and Sam Smith are among the British artists driving a surge in exports as the UK music industry.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049126.1574239933!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/heritage/revealed-these-are-the-nation-s-10-favourite-scots-words-1-5049069","id":"1.5049069","articleHeadline": "Revealed: These are the nation’s 10 favourite Scots words","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574233632000 ,"articleLead": "

A poll run in celebration of Book Week Scotland has revealed the nation's top 10 favourite Scots words.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049058.1574203398!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Scots words"} ,"articleBody": "

Scottish Book Trust chief executive Marc Lambert said: \"We were overwhelmed by the many submissions for our iconic Scots words vote - it's certainly a subject close to people's hearts.\" - From braw and glaikit to scunnered and Bumfle, here are the top 10 most iconic Scots words. [Main picture: Shutterstock]

" ,"byline": {"email": "sean.murphy@jpimedia.co.uk" ,"author": "Sean Murphy"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049058.1574203398!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049058.1574203398!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Scots words","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Scots words","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049058.1574203398!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049068.1574203409!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049068.1574203409!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Meaning: Regulalry topping polls of the nation's favourite Scots words, this delightful word usually refers to wet, cold or gloomy weather. "The weather is fair dreich the day."","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Meaning: Regulalry topping polls of the nation's favourite Scots words, this delightful word usually refers to wet, cold or gloomy weather. "The weather is fair dreich the day."","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049068.1574203409!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049067.1574203408!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049067.1574203408!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Meaning: (pronounced glay-kit) This is an adjective used to describe a stupid, foolish and thoughtless person or action. Dont just stand there looking glaikit, do something!","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Meaning: (pronounced glay-kit) This is an adjective used to describe a stupid, foolish and thoughtless person or action. Dont just stand there looking glaikit, do something!","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049067.1574203408!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049066.1574203407!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049066.1574203407!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Meaning: Being disgusted or irritated by something i.e "His attitude left me scunnered".","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Meaning: Being disgusted or irritated by something i.e "His attitude left me scunnered".","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049066.1574203407!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049064.1574203404!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049064.1574203404!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Meaning: To call something shoogly is to describe an object that is shaky or unsteady. The term derives from a Middle English term, shoggle, which has much the same meaning.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Meaning: To call something shoogly is to describe an object that is shaky or unsteady. The term derives from a Middle English term, shoggle, which has much the same meaning.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049064.1574203404!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049065.1574203406!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049065.1574203406!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Meaning: Scots vernacular has a load of phrases designed to tell others to keep quiet, but wheesht has the bonus of being adaptable - It can be used as a verb, a noun, & an interjection as in asking someone to haud their wheesht.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Meaning: Scots vernacular has a load of phrases designed to tell others to keep quiet, but wheesht has the bonus of being adaptable - It can be used as a verb, a noun, & an interjection as in asking someone to haud their wheesht.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049065.1574203406!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049059.1574203399!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049059.1574203399!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Meaning: Originally applied to wool that has become tangled up, it can now be used to mean any sort of muddle.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Meaning: Originally applied to wool that has become tangled up, it can now be used to mean any sort of muddle.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049059.1574203399!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049062.1574203402!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049062.1574203402!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Meaning: This may surprise a few people but this wonderful word - which means outside or beyond something - is actually only used in Scotland.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Meaning: This may surprise a few people but this wonderful word - which means outside or beyond something - is actually only used in Scotland.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049062.1574203402!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049061.1574203401!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049061.1574203401!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Meaning: Traced to 1615, in A Chronicle of The Kings of Scotland (cumlie yowth of braw statour), this originally referred to impressive physical appearance, but is now used as a compliment of someones appearance or character - or even a warm day.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Meaning: Traced to 1615, in A Chronicle of The Kings of Scotland (cumlie yowth of braw statour), this originally referred to impressive physical appearance, but is now used as a compliment of someones appearance or character - or even a warm day.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049061.1574203401!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049060.1574203400!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049060.1574203400!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Meaning: An affectionate name for little beasts or insects","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Meaning: An affectionate name for little beasts or insects","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049060.1574203400!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049063.1574203403!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049063.1574203403!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Meaning: Clothing that is bunched up or wrinkled.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Meaning: Clothing that is bunched up or wrinkled.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049063.1574203403!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/business/influence-can-help-you-join-the-ranks-of-the-instafamous-caoilfhionn-rose-maguire-1-5048830","id":"1.5048830","articleHeadline": "#influence can help you join the ranks of the InstaFamous – Caoilfhionn Rose Maguire","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574229679000 ,"articleLead": "

Caoilfhionn Rose Maguire tells how she built up her online brand and the doors that it has opened

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048828.1574179274!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The influential InstaFamous can gather thousands of online followers, who look to them as role models for insight and advice on fashion, lifestyle, travel and much more , to their personal online brands. Picture: Getty"} ,"articleBody": "

In 2018, 93 per cent of brands used Instagram as their ­channel of choice to launch influencer marketing campaigns according to research conducted by CreatorIQ. So, how did this social media platform become a marketing powerhouse in the hands of the ­everyday consumer?

I was recently invited to host YOTEL Edinburgh’s upcoming YO-TELLs event around the rise of the InstaFamous in Scotland and it got me ­thinking about my own relationship with the social platform.

It all began when I embarked on travels to Thailand with my friend from university. Instagram provided the perfect platform to document my trip in a visual form while ­keeping my friends and family up to date back home.

Back then my photographs were grainy, taken without any consideration for technique or that I was in fact ‘creating content’. I had no clue about hashtags and my captions were very cryptic.

Now, Instagram has become an ­all-consuming world of personal branding, content planning and connections with a global network of online friends.

But when did my relationship with Instagram change? I remember being recognised for my ­Instagram ‘influence’ when I had built up to around 8,500 followers. I was living in London at the time and I was invited to an event at Esteé Lauder HQ – at that point, I thought it couldn’t get much better.

As my following continued to grow, more opportunities came my way. I became a part of the InstaFamous world, a role model for my followers who looked to me for advice on ­everything, from travel and fashion to how to start a side-hustle, and with that comes a feeling of responsibility.

Being an ‘influencer’ soon became part of my livelihood, producing content for brands from Topshop to Bumble. Alongside this, I had a multi-hyphenate approach to my career and I built my travel business, Crusoe Collective, taking on the role as a travel writer for magazine House of Coco. This transient way of working allowed me to grasp opportunities and become more flexible in how I managed both my career and my online presence.

My Instagram channel has now developed into my personal brand, a platform where I focus on curating the perfect feed and producing ­captivating content. If a post doesn’t perform well, it’s deleted, and I go back to the drawing board. Much like a business, if a product isn’t in demand, stop the conveyer belt!

However, more recently, there’s been a shift towards authenticity on the platform – people want to see real people and their real lives.

Hashtags like #reallifeaesthetic and #authenticitymatters are some of the highest trending on the platform and you’re likely to garner more engagement for just being you, rather than a polished version of yourself. In a world that’s never been more ­connected, consumers yearn for a more personal connection and that’s the reason influencer marketing has skyrocketed.

Consumers become attached to their favourite influencers, as do I. If Eatinburgh tells me that a ­certain ­restaurant in Edinburgh is delicious, you bet I’ll go, and if Wear What Works posts about the latest garments to drop on ASOS, you’ll find me filling my cart.

I’m interested to know how others feel about the ever-developing platform which is why I’m excited for this week’s event. Alongside me, YOTEL has brought together some of the most influential and interesting people on the influencer scene in Edinburgh. We’re going to explore the platform in depth, from retaining our following to producing engaging content and managing it all with a full-time job on the side.

Although my relationship with Instagram has changed over the years, it’s helped me build my career and connect with like-minded people. I owe a lot to Instagram but my success is also down to always maintaining a side-hustle to the point of self-employment, my loyal followers and the hard work I’ve put in to build my brand to where it is today.

For now, it seems, the influencer marketing scene will continue to grow, redefining not only the marketing industry but the world of celebrity and the way consumers shop.

YO-TELLs InstaFamous will take place on 21 November at 7pm at YOTEL Edinburgh. Opened in August, this is the tech-inspired group’s first UK city centre hotel. The 276-room hotel offers an experience driven by sleek minimalistic design and clever use of technology for those who appreciate quality but don’t need the fuss of a traditional luxury hotel.

Caoilfhionn Rose Maguire, YOTEL.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Caoilfhionn Rose Maguire"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5048828.1574179274!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048828.1574179274!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The influential InstaFamous can gather thousands of online followers, who look to them as role models for insight and advice on fashion, lifestyle, travel and much more , to their personal online brands. Picture: Getty","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The influential InstaFamous can gather thousands of online followers, who look to them as role models for insight and advice on fashion, lifestyle, travel and much more , to their personal online brands. Picture: Getty","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5048828.1574179274!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5048829.1574179276!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048829.1574179276!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Caoilfhionn Rose Maguire","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Caoilfhionn Rose Maguire","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5048829.1574179276!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/health/arthritis-drugs-can-battle-breast-cancer-1-5049041","id":"1.5049041","articleHeadline": "Arthritis drugs can battle breast cancer","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574229631000 ,"articleLead": "

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049040.1574198555!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "In a major new study, scientists propose that NHS arthritis drugs could in future be repurposed to help treat breast cancer. Picture: AP"} ,"articleBody": "

Drugs commonly used to treat arthritis may help to prevent breast cancer spreading to the bone, where it is incurable, new research suggests.

In a major new study, scientists propose that NHS arthritis drugs anakinra, canakinumab and sulfasalazine could in future be repurposed to help treat breast cancer, following the discovery of the role bone marrow plays in the spread of the disease.

The study, largely funded by Breast Cancer Now, found bone marrow releases a protein which encourages breast cancer cells to form secondary tumours once they reach the bone.

Scientists at the Universities of Manchester and Sheffield established that the process started by this molecule can be blocked by drugs already used in treating arthritis, with anakinra found to be able to prevent breast cancer forming secondary tumours in the bone in a study in mice. It is hoped the findings could be quickly advanced into trials in women with breast cancer to try to prevent the disease spreading to the bone.

Charity Breast Cancer Now said the findings offered “another promising step forward in repurposing existing drugs to try to prevent the spread of breast cancer”, following the recent addition of osteoporosis drugs bisphosphonates to NHS breast cancer treatment for certain patients.

Breast cancer is the UK’s most common cancer, with around 55,000 women and 370 men being diagnosed each year and around 11,500 women still losing their lives each year in the UK.

Almost all of these deaths are attributable to secondary breast cancer, where breast cancer has spread to form tumours in other parts of the body.

While secondary breast cancer can be controlled for some time, it currently cannot be cured.

One of the most common parts of the body for breast cancer to spread to is the bone, which can cause debilitating symptoms such as joint pain or fractures.

Research teams led by Dr Rachel Eyre and Prof Rob Clarke at University of Manchester and Dr Penelope Ottewell from University of Sheffield investigated the growth of breast cancer cells in the lab and in mice to establish what helps the disease settle and grow in this location. They discovered the importance of certain factors released by the bone, and these findings were supported using data from patients with secondary breast cancer.

Dr Rachel Eyre, from the University of Manchester, said: “We are very excited by our results in the lab showing breast cancer in bone can be prevented using drugs already approved for other diseases.”

Baroness Delyth Morgan, chief executive at Breast Cancer Now, said: “These major findings offer another promising step forward in repurposing existing drugs to prevent the spread of breast cancer. While more research is needed, it’s really exciting these well-tolerated and widely available arthritis drugs may help prevent secondary breast cancer in the bone.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049040.1574198555!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049040.1574198555!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "In a major new study, scientists propose that NHS arthritis drugs could in future be repurposed to help treat breast cancer. Picture: AP","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "In a major new study, scientists propose that NHS arthritis drugs could in future be repurposed to help treat breast cancer. Picture: AP","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049040.1574198555!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/business/interface-s-academics-are-standing-by-to-help-business-thrive-laura-goodfellow-1-5048448","id":"1.5048448","articleHeadline": "Interface’s academics are standing by to help business thrive – Laura Goodfellow","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574229605000 ,"articleLead": "

Our recently published annual review for 2018-19 gives a flavour of the many faces of knowledge exchange, where businesses and academics collaborate for research and development to prove early stage concepts or gain ­valuable information to deliver a competitive edge.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048447.1574161274!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Laura Goodfellow, Head of Business Engagement, Interface"} ,"articleBody": "

The review is peppered with case studies highlighting different ways in which small and medium-sized ­businesses (and organisations) have been connected with universities and colleges by Interface to progress ­ideas into something tangible. Often, the resulting product, process or service has a powerful impact on the environment, society or the economy, or all three.

I would encourage you to read the full review, which you can find at interface-online.org.uk/news/annual-review-2018-2019 One of the standout statistics is that 100 per cent of companies surveyed were extremely satisfied or satisfied with the ­support from Interface. This is due to the ­passion, diligence and knowledge of the team which make up the sales force for Scotland’s ­universities, research institutes and colleges. This demonstrates that we are making a difference, matching businesses to the right academic partners for groundbreaking projects.

We know that many more companies and organisations could benefit from our impartial (and free) service and we are working hard to inspire as many small and medium sized enterprises as we can to the art of the possible. Academics – whether researchers, PhD students, groups of undergraduate students or professors – are ready and willing to share their knowledge and expertise.

A great example of how our matchmaking service has brought ­benefits to a company comes from one of my colleagues, business engagement manager Shelley Breckenridge. She has supported Scotland’s largest independent manufacturer of beds, headboards and soft furnishings, Elite Contract Furniture, over the past four years, with ongoing advice and access to expertise which cannot be bought off the shelf.

What started as a short-term project with a student from the ­University of Strathclyde’s design, manufacture and engineering management department (DMEM), after a referral from Scottish Enterprise in 2015, led to a nine-month industrial challenge regarding manufacturing methods and materials used in Elite’s mattress production.

A year later, a second nine-month project saw a ­student from DMEM investigate business processes to improve scheduling agility. In 2019, a two-year knowledge transfer partnership (KTP) was agreed – a recent graduate from the university will become a KTP associate with the company.

Building on Scotland’s drive towards a circular economy, Elite is focusing the KTP on launching a commercial subscription-based ­furniture package to the hospitality and care industry, allowing the company to take control of the ­furniture and furnishings they sell whilst extending the product life cycle.

The overall objective is to make quality products that last, challenging the current throwaway society ethos. The KTP will also Elite product design by investigating ways of extending their lifespan and how they can be dismantled easily and effectively at the end of their life. Elite’s production director, Greg ­Winston, said: “Another key advantage we have found is that it brings fresh pairs of eyes to the business allowing you to see new solutions to problems you might not have even known existed and new ideas that you may not have even considered.”

As Dr Anup Karath Nair from the University of Strathclyde, pointed out: “The University of Strathclyde believes in being a place for useful learning and knowledge transfer partnerships, like those with Elite, play a significant role in ensuring that DMEM upholds that motto.

“Such industry-academia collaboration helps ensure that research and subject matter expertise at the university are aligned with the needs and demands of British businesses and the wider UK economy and society.”

As in the case of Elite, when a business, organisation or entrepreneur and an academic team find a mutual interest, they both reap the rewards – the university or college gains ­valuable industry knowledge, which makes the teaching experience more realistic, while the business gains new ways of thinking, fresh ideas and input and a resource they possibly wouldn’t otherwise be able to access to solve a business issue.

Greater support for these deeper, longer-term partnerships is a priority for Interface. Feedback from companies we have supported showed that half of them plan to continue working with their academic partner once they have completed an ­initial project. There are a number of ways of achieving this, as illustrated in the Elite case study, KTPs being one vehicle for deeper collaboration. In many cases, KTP associates have gone onto work permanently for the company, which recognises that keeping the knowledge built up during the collaboration will continue to bring benefits.

In this uncertain world there is much to celebrate and so in February 2020, we will once again host the Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards, celebrating groundbreaking and innovative partnerships between businesses and academics.

The deadline for applications is 5pm on 29 November. More information can be found on our website at interface-online.org.uk/scottish-knowledge-exchange-awards-2020

Laura Goodfellow, head of business engagement, Interface.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "Laura Goodfellow"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5048447.1574161274!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048447.1574161274!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Laura Goodfellow, Head of Business Engagement, Interface","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Laura Goodfellow, Head of Business Engagement, Interface","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5048447.1574161274!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/sport/football/tottenham-hotspurs-have-sacked-manager-mauricio-pochettino-1-5049029","id":"1.5049029","articleHeadline": "Tottenham Hotspurs have sacked manager Mauricio Pochettino","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574194187000 ,"articleLead": "

Tottenham have announced they have sacked manager Mauricio Pochettino.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049028.1574194183!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The Argentinian has been relieved of his duties after five-and-a-half years in charge."} ,"articleBody": "

The Argentinian has been relieved of his duties after five-and-a-half years in charge.

Spurs, who were in the Champions League final only six months ago, have endured a tough start to the season and are currently 14th in the Premier League table.

Chairman Daniel Levy, who appointed Pochettino in June 2014, said: \"We were extremely reluctant to make this change and it is not a decision the board have taken lightly, nor in haste.

\"Regrettably domestic results at the end of last season and the beginning of this season have been extremely disappointing.

\"It falls on the board to make the difficult decisions - this one made more so given the many memorable moments we have had with Mauricio and his coaching staff - but we do so in the club's best interests.\"

Pochettino was at the helm for 293 games and delivered four successive top-four Premier League finishes, challenging for the title in 2015/16 and 2016/17.

He also memorably guided the club to their first Champions League final last season, but they fell short in the Madrid showpiece in a 2-0 defeat to Liverpool.

His assistant Jesus Perez, and coaches Miguel D'Agostino and Antoni Jimenez have also left the club.

" ,"byline": {"email": "sean.murphy@jpimedia.co.uk" ,"author": "Sean Murphy"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049028.1574194183!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049028.1574194183!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The Argentinian has been relieved of his duties after five-and-a-half years in charge.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The Argentinian has been relieved of his duties after five-and-a-half years in charge.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049028.1574194183!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/people/jeremy-vine-apologises-after-appearing-to-offer-scotland-s-oldest-bagpiper-a-shedload-of-cannabis-1-5049010","id":"1.5049010","articleHeadline": "Jeremy Vine apologises after appearing to offer Scotland's oldest bagpiper a 'shedload' of cannabis","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574190195872 ,"articleLead": "Jeremy Vine has apologised after appearing to offer Scotland's oldest bagpipe player a \"shedload\" of cannabis.","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049009.1574190612!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The presenter made the gaffe on BBC Radio 2."} ,"articleBody": "

The presenter, 54, made the gaffe on BBC Radio 2 during a live broadcast from Glasgow on Monday.

Vine told Bob McFie, 93, that he had "plenty of puff" to spare if the musician happened to run out during his time on the show.

Vine later apologised after being made aware that his comments could be interpreted as meaning "I've got a shedload of ganja".

He said on Twitter: "I apologise for the phrase I used earlier on the radio.

• READ MORE: Jeremy Vine reveals note about Scotland's contribution to UK given to him by SNP MP

"While interviewing Scotland's oldest bagpiper, Bob McFie, 93, I told him: "I have got plenty of puff if you run out.

"I now understand that means 'I've got a shedload of ganja if you've smoked all yours'."

Mr McFie gave Vine a tutorial in playing the great Highland bagpipe, as well as a lesson in the instrument's history.

Referring to his guest as Bob, Vine told listeners: "Bob is on a mission to convince us that the bagpipe is capable of producing the most melodic and beautiful music and that it has unfairly been described as discordant and screechy.

"The joy of having you here is that we can cleanse our minds of all the election talk now.

"We don't have to do any politics. Do we? You don't need to say anything about politics here."

Earlier in the programme, a General Election special, Vine discussed Glasgow's "international reputation" for "the scourge of drugs" and spoke to a former heroin addict helping others in the city to fight addiction.

" ,"byline": {"email": "sean.murphy@jpimedia.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5049009.1574190612!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5049009.1574190612!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The presenter made the gaffe on BBC Radio 2.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The presenter made the gaffe on BBC Radio 2.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5049009.1574190612!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/scottish-government-to-consider-options-if-prestwick-sale-talks-collapse-1-5048603","id":"1.5048603","articleHeadline": "Scottish Government to 'consider options' if Prestwick sale talks collapse","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574169847284 ,"articleLead": "Scotland's transport secretary has conceded that plans to sell off the lossmaking Glasgow Prestwick Airport to the private sector may fall through.","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048602.1574178308!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The loss making airport was put up for sale by ministers in June. Picture: John Devlin"} ,"articleBody": "

The heavily indebted hub was put up for sale by the Scottish Government in June, six years after buying it for a token £1 to avert closure.

The sale documents indicated that a preferred bidder for the airport was expected to be selected in the first week of September with the sale completed by about 4 October.

However, there has yet to be any announcement of a preferred bidder, or confirmation that a sale is imminent.

It comes as the airport is at the centre of an investigation by the House Oversight and Reform Committee in the US Congress which includes US Defence Department payments and patronage at the state-owned airport.

Now, amid ongoing doubts over the negotiations with private parties, Michael Matheson has informed the convenor of Hiolyrood's rural economy and connectivity committee that the sale may fall through.

In his correspondence to Tory MSP Edward Mountain providing an update on the sale process, Mr Matheson wrote: "While efforts are currently focussed on returning the airport to the private sector, which has been our intention since purchasing the airport in 2013, should this not be achievable for any reason we will consider options for taking the airport forward in the future."

It is unclear what options the Scottish Government would look at if it is unable to sell Prestwick, which is reliant on loans totalling £38.4m from Scottish ministers.

READ MORE: Scottish Government minister warned about Prestwick US military allegations last year

Those in charge of the airport have come under increased scrutiny in recent months. As revealed by The Scotsman in October, multiple senior sources familiar with the airport’s business allege it is waiving service fees for inbound US Armed Forces aircraft at a cost to taxpayers of “seven figures" in order to bolster traffic and safeguard its commercial relationship with the US Defence Department.

Justice minister Humza Yousaf was alerted to the allegations last year while serving as transport minister, correspondence obtained by this newspaper shows. The airport has refused to respond to a series of enquiries about the allegations.

Mr Matheson's letter, sent on 16 November, did not expand on the progress of any sales discussions, noting only that the airport's senior management team is continuing to "consider the bids that were received."

It goes on: "As I am sure you will appreciate, consideration of bids and the work associated with the process are complex matters that require detailed assessment (both by Prestwick and by bidders), and ongoing discussions with interested parties.

"Good progress continues to be made and we are satisfied with how the sale process is developing."

Mr Matheson states in his letter that he remains committed to providing an update to parliament once he is "in a position
to do so."

He adds: "In the meantime, it is essential that we avoid any comment or speculation that could impact on the process."

READ MORE: Prestwick Airport ‘waiving’ fees for US military aircraft

" ,"byline": {"email": "martyn.mclaughlin@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Martyn McLaughlin"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5048602.1574178308!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048602.1574178308!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The loss making airport was put up for sale by ministers in June. Picture: John Devlin","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The loss making airport was put up for sale by ministers in June. Picture: John Devlin","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5048602.1574178308!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/crime/husband-cleared-of-killing-nagging-wife-by-tipping-a-vat-of-boiling-fat-over-her-1-5048491","id":"1.5048491","articleHeadline": "Husband cleared of killing 'nagging' wife by tipping a vat of boiling fat over her","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574166431771 ,"articleLead": "A husband has been cleared of killing his wife after he was accused of burning her with scalding oil following a row in their chip shop.","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048553.1574166579!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Geoffrey Bran, 71, was accused of pushing or throwing a deep fat fryer onto Mavis Bran, his wife of 38 years, leaving her with horrific burns that led to her death six days later."} ,"articleBody": "


Geoffrey Bran, 71, was accused of pushing or throwing a deep fat fryer onto Mavis Bran, his wife of 38 years, leaving her with horrific burns that led to her death six days later.

Before she died, Mrs Bran told a friend and paramedics that her husband had "flipped" and attacked her with the fryer because she had been "nagging him" inside the Chipoteria chip shop in the rural village of Hermon, Carmarthenshire.

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But on Monday, a jury found Mr Bran not guilty of murder or manslaughter following a week-long trial.

Mr Bran was in tears as the jury at Swansea Crown Court read out their not guilty verdict, before judge Paul Thomas QC released him from the dock.

Mrs Bran died from multi-organ failure in hospital six days after suffering "horrific burns" to 46% of her body after developing sepsis and hypothermia and undergoing surgery to remove some of her burned skin.

Lodger Gareth Davies told the court Mrs Bran returned to her home naked from the waist up with "crimson" peeling skin around 1pm on October 23 last year, shouting "I've been burned" and "I've had boiling hot fat all over me".

Mrs Bran then rang her friend, Caroline Morgan, telling her: "Geoff has thrown boiling oil over me. Please get here, I need you now, help."

Miss Morgan said she found Mrs Bran "shocked" and "shaking" and told Mr Davies to call for an ambulance, before telling Mr Bran, who was still serving customers, to shut the chip shop.

Miss Morgan told the court Mrs Bran said: "I was nagging him and he flipped."

She was taken by air ambulance to the burns unit at Morriston Hospital in Swansea.

Mr Bran was initially arrested on suspicion of assault and denied attacking his wife, telling police: "She got burned with the chip fryer. She slipped and it came off the top and went over her. Don't ask."

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The couple, who had no children together, owned around 10 businesses around South Wales, including the Chipoteria which opened in January 2018 in a cabin situated next to their home in the small West Wales village.

The court heard that financial pressures of their various businesses would sometimes put a strain on their marriage, leading to arguments about money.

People who knew the couple were said to have described them as having "short tempers" and "always argued, swearing and shouting at each other".

In the months leading up to her death, a friend of Mrs Bran had noticed the couple's relationship had been "deteriorating", with Mrs Bran phoning friend Miss Morgan in tears saying "he's getting nasty".

Mr Bran claimed his wife had previously spread lies about him, and suggested she was "halfway" to being drunk on the afternoon she was injuries after drinking glasses of red wine.

Paramedics found she had a blood alcohol reading of 108 mg/dl, higher than the drink-drive limit of 80mg/dl.

Mr Bran said his wife must have been "confused" when blaming him but said he "couldn't find an answer" as to why he then ignored her for more than two hours after she was hurt.

He told the court he loved and missed his wife, despite telling police in an interview: "It's a miracle we lasted that long. But we used to get on OK. We've had our ups and downs."

" ,"byline": {"email": "newsdeskts@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5048553.1574166579!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048553.1574166579!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Geoffrey Bran, 71, was accused of pushing or throwing a deep fat fryer onto Mavis Bran, his wife of 38 years, leaving her with horrific burns that led to her death six days later.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Geoffrey Bran, 71, was accused of pushing or throwing a deep fat fryer onto Mavis Bran, his wife of 38 years, leaving her with horrific burns that led to her death six days later.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5048553.1574166579!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5048490.1574164106!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048490.1574164106!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Geoffrey Bran, 71, was accused of pushing or throwing a deep fat fryer onto Mavis Bran, his wife of 38 years, leaving her with horrific burns that led to her death six days later.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Geoffrey Bran, 71, was accused of pushing or throwing a deep fat fryer onto Mavis Bran, his wife of 38 years, leaving her with horrific burns that led to her death six days later.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5048490.1574164106!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/people/optician-spotted-scottish-gran-was-having-stroke-during-consultation-1-5048403","id":"1.5048403","articleHeadline": "Optician spotted Scottish gran was having stroke during consultation","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574163600000 ,"articleLead": "

An 80-year-old gran who went to get her eyes tested had her life saved by opticians - who spotted she was having a stroke.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048402.1574156707!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The optician has been praised. Picture: SWNS"} ,"articleBody": "

Alice McCaughey, 80, was unaware that her speech was badly slurred when she went for a check up.

Staff at the branch of Specsavers, in Oak Mall, Greenock, Inverclyde, were alarmed and noticed that the OAP was struggling with her mobility.

The optician insisted Alice should go to hospital to be checked over.

A taxi rushed the gran to Inverclyde Royal Hospital, where medics quickly assessed that she was having a stroke.

Alice said: \"I was going for a check up and on the way in the driver said my speech was a little odd.

\"I went into the opticians and they immediately recognised it was badly slurred, even though at the time I had no idea anything was going on.

\"I was completely unaware, in fact.

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\"The optician told me she didn't want to alarm me but said that was the second time she had noticed that with me while I was in the store.

\"She said that she was sending me to the hospital to be checked over and it turned out I was having a stroke.

\"I can't thank them enough for their speed of thinking.

\"They possibly saved my life.\"

She was diagnosed with a TIA, which can lead to major stroke if it goes untreated.

Alice added: \"I was in A&E then I was moved to the stroke ward.

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\"I can honestly say it was a privilege to be there to see for myself the amazing work the team there do.

\"I just think it is important to say how great the hospital staff at Inverclyde Royal Hospital were when areas of our local services seem to keep being moved to Glasgow.\"

The terrifying ordeal was the second time Alice had been helped by the Oak Mall opticians, after a routine check up a few years ago identified a blood clot in her eye.

Alice was diagnosed with macular degeneration and has been undergoing a course of treatment since that sees her receive regular injections to save her sight.

She said: \"They noticed I had a blood clot in my eye and sent me to hospital. I have had eye jabs since.

\"I might not have realised what was happening without staff's intervention.

" ,"byline": {"email": "newsdeskts@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5048402.1574156707!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048402.1574156707!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The optician has been praised. Picture: SWNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The optician has been praised. Picture: SWNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5048402.1574156707!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/passenger-jet-over-scotland-narrowly-avoids-disaster-after-near-miss-with-drone-1-5048415","id":"1.5048415","articleHeadline": "Passenger jet over Scotland narrowly avoids disaster after near-miss with drone","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574163600000 ,"articleLead": "

A passenger plane flying over Scotland came dangerously close to colliding with a drone.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048414.1574157136!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "It is against the law to fly a drone above 400ft or within 1km of an airport boundary. Picture: SWNS"} ,"articleBody": "

The pilot of an Airbus A320 was 7,000ft up when he noticed a black drone ahead of the plane. It moved directly over the top of the aircraft and passed before any evasive action could be taken. It is unclear how many passengers were on board or what airline was involved, but A320's typically have around 180 seats.

The near-miss above Dewar in the Scottish Borders was reported to air traffic control in August and the aviation safety body Airprox has now said that the risk of collision at that altitude was \"very high\" and that only \"providence\" had prevented a potential disaster.

READ MORE: Drone ‘feet away from Edinburgh passenger plane collision’
The report said: \"The A320 pilot reports that a black drone, possibly with blue markings, was seen directly ahead and above the aircraft,\"

\"The drone passed before any action could be taken. The reported drone was being flown above the maximum permitted height of 400ft and within controlled airspace such that it was endangering other aircraft at that location.

\"The pilot's overall account of the incident portrayed a situation where providence had played a major part in the incident and/or a definite risk of collision had existed.\"

Earlier this year, a special investigation by The Scotsman revealed how a drone came within a few feet of colliding with a passenger plane over Edinburgh Airport in one of a string of terrifying incidents involving the unmanned aircraft in the last three years.

As of July 30, 2018, it is against the law to fly a drone above 400ft or within 1km of an airport boundary.

" ,"byline": {"email": "news@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5048414.1574157136!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048414.1574157136!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "It is against the law to fly a drone above 400ft or within 1km of an airport boundary. Picture: SWNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "It is against the law to fly a drone above 400ft or within 1km of an airport boundary. Picture: SWNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5048414.1574157136!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/people/kelly-macdonald-will-star-as-the-lead-in-the-next-series-of-line-of-duty-1-5048442","id":"1.5048442","articleHeadline": "Kelly Macdonald will star as the lead in the next series of Line Of Duty","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574160876000 ,"articleLead": "

Kelly Macdonald will star as the guest lead in the next series of Line Of Duty.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048441.1574160872!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "he Trainspotting star will play Detective Chief Inspector Joanne Davidson in the BBC One drama's sixth series, which will start filming next year."} ,"articleBody": "

The Trainspotting star will play Detective Chief Inspector Joanne Davidson in the BBC One drama's sixth series, which will start filming next year.

Line Of Duty writer and showrunner Jed Mercurio said: \"We're honoured that Kelly Macdonald will join Martin (Compston), Vicky (McClure) and Adrian (Dunbar) in Series 6 of Line Of Duty.

DCI Joanne Davidson will prove the most enigmatic adversary AC-12 have ever faced.\"

Mercurio tweeted: \"Everyone involved in #LineofDuty is thrilled Kelly Macdonald is joining us for Series 6, playing AC-12's most enigmatic adversary yet.\"

READ MORE - School refused to support Children in Need after 'members of staff were reduced to tears' by parents

READ MORE - Scarlett Moffatt dropped from co-presenting role on Saturday Night Takeaway

" ,"byline": {"email": "newsdeskts@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5048441.1574160872!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048441.1574160872!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "he Trainspotting star will play Detective Chief Inspector Joanne Davidson in the BBC One drama's sixth series, which will start filming next year.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "he Trainspotting star will play Detective Chief Inspector Joanne Davidson in the BBC One drama's sixth series, which will start filming next year.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5048441.1574160872!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/people/furious-couple-say-company-charged-them-2-500-to-move-house-just-four-miles-away-1-5048433","id":"1.5048433","articleHeadline": "Furious couple say company charged them £2,500 to move house - just four miles away","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574160197000 ,"articleLead": "

A couple have slammed a removals company who ended up charging them £2,500 to move house - just four miles away.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048432.1574160193!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "A couple have slammed a removals company who ended up charging them 2,500 to move house - just four miles away. Picture: SWNS"} ,"articleBody": "

Kevin White, 51, and his wife Allison had packed up their house and had been quoted £660 from Bristol 1st Removals to help transport their things.

But on the day of the move, there was a delay in the couple getting the keys to their new house.

And when they phoned the removals firm to let them know, the company said they would have to store the couple's items overnight - at an extra cost of £1,920.

The furious couple ended up forking out a whopping £2,500 to Bristol 1st Removals - but not without threatening to call the police during a heated discussion.

However, Richard Morgan of Bristol 1st Removals said that, under the company's terms and conditions, they acted within their rights and legitimately charged the extra money.

Mr White, a driver, told how he and his wife had planned to move on October 18 from Ilchester Crescent in Bedminster Down, Bristol, to Chessington Avenue in Whitchurch - a 15-minute drive away.

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He said: \"At 11 o'clock our solicitor phoned and said the guy buying our house had a delay with the money. We phoned the removal men and they phoned up their boss.\"

Mr White said Mr Morgan then rang from the company and told him that, under the terms and conditions, there was a cut-off time of 3pm for moving.

The company said that if the keys weren't available possessions would have to be stored overnight.

Mr White said: \"I was told to pay £1,920 on top of the £660 and if I didn't pay it I wouldn't get my stuff back.

\"I paid the £1,920, which came to a total of £2,500 to move four miles.\"

Mr White said he had the keys to his new home by 4pm, but by then it was too late.

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He and his wife stayed the night at their son's home in Bedminster Down before the move was completed the next day.

He said: \"Obviously we were angry. We chatted to them a week after and there was a heated discussion and I threatened to call police.\"

But Mr Morgan said that Mr White was \"bang out of order\" in threatening company staff, which contributed to him not meeting with the dissatisfied customer.

Mr Morgan said:\"He got his keys late, we have terms and conditions and we reserved the right to charge more money.\"

He said he had not met with the customer since as he (Mr Morgan) had been ill, and had not appreciated him threatening his staff.

But he said he would speak to Mr White if he wanted to see him.

He added the company is a member of The National Guild of Removers and Storers Ltd and Mr White would be able to take any complaint to the Removals Ombudsman.

" ,"byline": {"email": "newsdeskts@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5048432.1574160193!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048432.1574160193!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "A couple have slammed a removals company who ended up charging them 2,500 to move house - just four miles away. Picture: SWNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "A couple have slammed a removals company who ended up charging them 2,500 to move house - just four miles away. Picture: SWNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5048432.1574160193!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/people/desperate-child-7-writes-heartbreaking-letter-to-santa-asking-for-a-home-and-food-1-5048387","id":"1.5048387","articleHeadline": "Desperate child, 7, writes heartbreaking letter to Santa asking for a home and food","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574154738000 ,"articleLead": "

A desperate seven-year-old child has written a heartbreaking letter to Santa asking for a home and food for her family for Christmas.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048386.1574154734!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The letter was left in a Christmas postbox at the L6 Community Centre in Everton."} ,"articleBody": "

The letter was left in a Christmas postbox at the L6 Community Centre in Everton.

Local Labour councillor Gerard Woodhouse posted a picture of the letter on Twitter.

In the letter, the child writes: \"Dear Father Christmas. Can you help?

\"Can we have a home for Christmas? Mam wants us to be all together. Can you give us some food and can I have just a nice doll for Christmas? Thank you.\"

The letter appeared when the team at the community centre began decorating for Christmas.

READ MORE - School refused to support Children in Need after 'members of staff were reduced to tears' by parents

They left the postbox in the cafe for visiting children to post their Christmas wishes.

Mr Woodhouse told the PA news agency: \"I stopped by yesterday, and I opened the postbox and saw the letter there. It was so upsetting to read.

\"I know the children, and it's not right that a seven-year-old child is worrying about Christmas in November.

\"There is no-one around to support these children.\"

He said the L6 centre team is trying to help the family and may put them up in a hotel on Christmas Day.

The children currently live with a relative.

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However, Mr Woodhouse said the letter did not come as a surprise to him.

\"It's only going to get worse,\" he said.

\"A few weeks ago we were sitting down with a few of the kids from the centre. One child said, 'I just want to be warm this Christmas.' These kids know their parents have not got the money this year for presents.

\"We are seeing first hand how difficult it is, and it is just so upsetting.\"

" ,"byline": {"email": "newsdeskts@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5048386.1574154734!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048386.1574154734!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The letter was left in a Christmas postbox at the L6 Community Centre in Everton.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The letter was left in a Christmas postbox at the L6 Community Centre in Everton.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5048386.1574154734!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.scotsman.com/news/people/school-refused-to-support-children-in-need-after-members-of-staff-were-reduced-to-tears-by-parents-1-5048378","id":"1.5048378","articleHeadline": "School refused to support Children in Need after 'members of staff were reduced to tears' by parents","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1574153891000 ,"articleLead": "

Parents have slammed a school's \"army inspection\" after it ordered children to remove anything in support of Children in Need.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048377.1574153887!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The school is standing by their decision. Picture: Googlemaps"} ,"articleBody": "

Officials at St White's Primary School said it made the ruling after staff suffered abuse over a clothing row at last year's event.

This meant this year youngsters were asked to attend classes in full uniform and without any Children in Need-branded items - but not everyone got the message.

Several pupils still wore items sporting the charity's well-known spotty theme - leading to teachers giving them a dressing-down at the school in Cinderford, Glos.

One parent, who asked to remain anonymous, said their child told them that some students wearing pin badges and headbands had to remove them.

They said: \"Apparently loads of them hadn't seen the email that went round. It only went around a few days before.

\"My youngest, who is in reception, told me that one of her friends was sad because she had to remove a hair band.

\"Other children were made to remove pin badges, which is a bit extreme.\"

Another parent, who also asked to talk unnamed, said: \"I got told that it was a bit like an army inspection going on, in each classroom and individually taking badges and hair bobbles and head bands.

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\"I don't think that should have been done, personally. I'm quite disgusted at the school really, that they would do that to children and remove the badges and the headbands.

\"I'd understand if the child went in on non-uniform because they weren't participating - but to remove a badge and a headband? I don't agree with that.

\"It should be a child's choice to wear a badge. They allowed them to wear a poppy.\"

Matt Bishop, chairman of the school's governing board, said in a statement that Children in Need was not one of the school's chosen charities this year and rejected claims that there was an \"army style inspection\".

He said: \"There were no army style inspections taking place and no child, at any time, was forced to remove any item; if the child had items deemed not appropriate, they were simply asked to remove them\".

The chairman added that the school did not wish to support Children in Need after \"members of staff were reduced to tears\" by parents last year.

Children were sent home after attending school in non-uniform even though they were instructed that all they could add to their uniform was something \"spotty\", causing a row.

Mr Bishop's full statement says: \"The school sent a reminder message to all parents on November 12 stating that the PTA were holding a cake sale for Children in Need and had changed the date to November 14.

\"At this time we reminded parents that we had decided not to hold any form of dress-down on November 15 for the event and that we required all children to wear their full uniform, without any additional items.

\"The reasons we had chosen not to support Children in Need for this year were partly due to the fact that last year there was considerable abuse directed at the office staff from parents/carers over this particular charity day.

\"Children were clearly informed that they could wear something spotty with their uniform, but some parents treated this as a full non-uniform day \"Members of staff were reduced to tears because of the abuse that they experienced and this is unacceptable.

\"The school's PTA felt that they would like to do something to support this good cause this year, and so the cake sale was agreed.

\"It was made very clear to all stakeholders that Children in Need was not one of the charities the school has chosen to support this year and all stakeholders had been made aware that children would not be allowed to wear items sold by the PTA in school the following day.

\"I am pleased to say that the majority of parents complied with the request not to send children to school in items relating to Children in Need.

\"Further to this, there were no army style inspections taking place and no child, at any time, was forced to remove any item; if the child had items deemed not appropriate, they were simply asked to remove them and we explained that lots of children had purchased items to support Children in Need but were not wearing them as requested so it would not be fair if other pupils did.

\"St White's School supports a number of charities over each academic year, and will continue to do so.\"

" ,"byline": {"email": "newsdeskts@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Scotsman Reporter"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.5048377.1574153887!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.5048377.1574153887!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The school is standing by their decision. Picture: Googlemaps","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The school is standing by their decision. Picture: Googlemaps","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.5048377.1574153887!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} ]}}} ]}