Lloyds creates 500 new jobs as it sells 632 branches

Lloyds Banking Group

By: Anna Redman

 Lloyds TSB is set to create 500 new jobs across the UK.

The banking company will create the new jobs as part of its plans to sell several of its branches to the Co-op.

Project Verde will see the sale of 632 Lloyds bank branches. The new jobs will be created in support centres in Sunderland, Gloucester, Livingston, Birmingham and Swansea.

The sale is a result of an order from the European Union, following the UK government’s bailout of Lloyds during 2008’s financial crisis and will likely make the Co-operative Group responsible for 19% of mortgages.

Gordon Edwards, telephone banking director at Lloyd’s Sunderland site,  said these new jobs are “great news.”

Project Verde is proving to be a “highly complex” deal and is now facing delay as the Financial Services Authority seek assurances regarding the capacity of the Co-operative Group to take on this major acquisition.

Deep Sea World Set to ‘Rock’ Livi

Clowing Around: Charlie will be at Almondvale Shopping Centre this week.Almondvale Shopping Centre is not a place where you would normally associate aquatic life with, despite customers looking to catch a deal. This week, 4th – 8th November, shoppers at the Livingston complex will be able to have a look at various underwater species as Deep Sea World‘s Rockpool Roadshow comes to town.

The public will be able to view and even interact with various species of crab, starfish, sea anenomes, shellfish and even sharks. Younger visitors will also be entertained, as there are diving suit exhibitions, face painting, along with Charlie the Clownfish.

This brief visit aims to educate and raise awareness of marine awareness.

Deep Sea World‘s Paul Francis stated, “We’re hoping the roadshow will give people – both young and old – a better opportunity to understand the creatures of the ocean.”

“If they can experience sea life close up and maybe even touch it, it immediately becomes much more real than just reading about it in a book.By bringing a slice of the seaside to the store we’re hoping to inspire more people to find out about the seas around our shores.”he added.

The exhibition runs from the 4th November  to the 8h of November from 11 a.m. till 3 p.m.

 

Weekend Sports Preview

With a busy weekend of sport ahead, Ross Hart takes a look at the upcoming action.

Football:

Weather permitting, there is a full card of league fixtures this weekend and a Scottish Cup tie this evening.

Tonight, Inverurie Locos and Vale of Leithen will attempt for the fouth time to play their third round Scottish Cup tie after adverse weather conditions resulted in three postponements. The winners will be rewarded with a home tie against SPL side Motherwell in the fourth round.

In the Scottish Premier League this weekend, Rangers travel to in form Dundee United in the early kick off on Saturday. United have only lost once in their last 14 league and cup games and sit third in the table, while Rangers will look to put more pressure on leaders Celtic after defeating Hamilton 7-1 last weekend.

Celtic meanwhile are looking to recover from last weekend’s loss to Hibernian by defeating the other half of Edinburgh at Celtic Park. Last night’s Champions League victory over Villarreal provided a confidence boost but Hearts have won five successive matches to maintain their push for European football next season.

Hibernian will look to build on their victory over the leaders last week by defeating struggling Hamilton at Easter Road. The visitors sit bottom of the table after recording only one win in their last 12 league matches but are boosted by striker Richard Offiong signing a contract extension.

In the other SPL games, Aberdeen will look to maintain their position within the top six at home to Falkirk, while St Mirren will climb above Inverness with victory at Love Street. Motherwell host Kilmarnock on Monday evening in a game to be broadcast live on Setanta Sports.

In the First Division, Dunfermline Athletic, who sit second in the table, look to keep up their push for promotion as they travel to play Queen of the South in Dumfries while Livingston will be looking to earn a first victory for new boss Paul Hegarty as they travel north to take on Ross County.

Rugby:

The Edinburgh Gunners are again in action this weekend as they travel south to play London Wasps in a Heineken Cup pool two clash. The sides met at Murrayfield last weekend with the Gunners falling to a 25-16 defeat so Andy Robinson will be hoping his team can gain revenge on former Scotland coach Ian McGeechan’s team on Sunday afternoon.

Scotland’s other European representatives Glasgow Warriors take on Bath at Firhill on Sunday and will also be looking to avenge defeat by their English counterparts. Sean Lineen’s team narrowly lost out last weekend by 35 points to 31 at the Recreation Ground.

Snooker:

Ronnie O’Sullivan is looking to defend his Maplin UK Championship title as this year’s tournament gets underway on Saturday in Telford. Current World Champion O’Sullivan kicks off the defence of the UK Championship against Rory McLeod on the opening day of the tournament.

There is plenty of Scottish representation, with five players flying the saltire. Five time UK Champion Stephen Hendry takes on England’s Stephen Lee while the ‘Wishaw Wizard’ and current Grand Prix champion John Higgins faces world number 20 Joe Swail.

Former World Champion Graeme Dott faces Ireland’s Ken Doherty while the clash between world number two Stephen MaGuire and Jamie Burnett, ranked 43 places below, guarantees a Scottish name in the second round.

Hegarty set for Livingston post

By Graeme Macleod

PAUL Hegarty will be unveiled as the new manager of Livingston FC this afternoon, according to BBC Sport Scotland.

The former Dundee United and Aberdeen boss is set to succeed Italian Roberto Landi, who was sacked after Saturday’s shock defeat to East Stirling in the Scottish Cup.

He said: “It’s a job that appeals to me, and one that I am looking forward to taking on.”

But the impending appointment has failed to excite the Livinston faithful. Peter Glasgow, secretary of the Livi Lions Supporters’ Club told Dunedin Napier News: “Paul Hegarty’s record doesn’t immediately inspire confidence but the fans will get behind him.

“Good luck to him and hopefully he can get a result on Saturday.”

After being bought over in the summer and making a positive start to the season, Livingston now sit fifth in the First Division. They won only one of their last seven league games before Landi’s dismissal.

Glasgow added: “It doesn’t surprise me that Landi was sacked as this seems to be the mentality of the new owners. But it is disappoiting that we are back on the managerial merry-go-round when we were looking for a bit of consistency.”

“Hopefully we can consolidate in the First Division this season. We will see what players we have come January and it will be interesting to see what sort of transfer budget Paul Hegarty gets.”

Hegarty has been out of football since leaving Motherwell in June 2007 after serving as assistant manager to Maurice Malpas. More recently, he has been working as a scout for Scotland boss George Burley.

He is expected to sign an 18-month contract. His first game in charge of fifth-placed Livi will be this weekend’s league fixture at home against Dundee.

Meanwhile, Livingston defender James McPake has agreed a pre-contract with Coventry City. The 24-year-old will join the English Championship club at the end of the season.

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