Talk of the Town: Don't let your local become a black hole

MEETING friends for a couple of drinks is a favourite pastime for many people.

But university researchers have found that going to the pub is much more than just that - it's a lifeline for some communities.

Research carried out by Edinburgh Napier University has shown that pub closures have had a "disastrous" effect on local communities.

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They say that the village local plays a significant role in acting as a "hub" for the community and their disappearance is leaving socio-economic "black holes".

Has there ever been a better reason to head down your local pub?

Internet truce is best policy for warring couples

FIRST it was the undoing of politicians, then the folly of pop stars. But now "Bitter Twittering" has entered the realm of marriage, a city law firm has warned.

Gibson Kerr is warning couples who are going through divorce proceedings to be careful about venting frustration on social network sites - and say they should even consider an internet truce.

The family law firm is advising warring couples not to follow Kelsey Grammer's lead - announcing his divorce with a Tweet.

Needless to say, posting pictures of your new flame on Facebook is also included in the firm's warning.

Tea with your overdraft?

THEY may not be everyone's cup of tea but some Edinburgh bankers are taking a time-out from the numbers game to brew up a solution to Britain's social ills.

In a bid to combat increasingly isolationist attitudes of modern society, staff at Clydesdale Bank have devised their own unique hot beverage blending classic English breakfast tea infused with Ginkgo leaves and Ginseng Root.

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The potion is designed to get people chatting over cups of tea.

What better way to quench your thirst whilst discussing the mess the banking crisis has created?

Unrealised dream for Best

AS A sporting legend on the pitch and a hellraiser off it, you'd think it unlikely that George Best would count becoming a detective novelist among his ambitions.

But biographer Graeme Wright, who lodged with Best in the city's Palmerston Place while ghostwriting Where Do I Go Now?, has revealed the star was keen to show his critics he was more than a playboy and dreamed about penning books after failing to save Hibs from relegation in 1980.

He sadly never realised his dream, leaving us to wonder if he would have produced thrillers such as Murder On The Leyton Orient Express, The Easter Road To Perdition or even Gorgie Park.

Perhaps football's gain was the literary world's loss.