9am briefing: Icy weather set to hit Christmas shoppers

TEMPERATURES are set to dip again to -9C in Edinburgh tonight and forecasters have warned it will feel even colder.

• Shoppers and commuters make their way home at the east end of Princes Street earlier this month

The freezing temperatures come ahead of predictions for yet more heavy snow on Sunday, but the wind chill factor heading into the weekend could make conditions particularly biting for Christmas shoppers.

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All the Lothian councils insist they are prepared for the latest wintry weather after the widespread complaints which followed the record snowfall earlier this month.

The Met Office said flurries of snow could fall in the Lothians today, with temperatures unlikely to rise above freezing, but Edinburgh would be "unlucky" to see significant snow showers.

New Tattoo boss announced

BRIGADIER David Allfrey, MBE, until recently commander of 51 Scottish Brigade, is to take over as Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo boss from Major-General Euan Loudon, who is retiring.

Brig. Allfrey, 51, was commissioned into the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards in 1979 and commanded the regiment from 2000 until 2002.

He said: "I look forward to playing my part in taking the Tattoo to a new level and producing an imaginative public spectacle which showcases the very best of what our country's military and civilian musical heritage has to offer."

In recent years the Tattoo has celebrated huge success. It sold out in the past six years and is worth 88 million to the Scottish economy.

Firework tribute to fallen soldier

THE ashes of a 3 RIFLES hero who sacrificed his life to stop an attack on a packed Afghan marketplace have been scattered into the sky in a firework display tribute on the anniversary of his death.

Lance Corporal David Kirkness was killed at a bazaar in Sangin on December 15 last year preventing two suicide bombers from reaching their intended target.

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His mother Maggie, 44, who was among 150 friends and family who gathered in his home town of Morley, West Yorkshire, said: "We wanted to give him the send-off he deserved. It looked amazing, he'd have loved it."

The 24-year-old, who joined the Edinburgh battalion in March 2004, was described as a "multi-talented" sniper, Pashtu speaker and "something of a father figure" to younger riflemen by Major James Richardson, Officer Commanding B Company 3 RIFLES.