Edinburgh Tesco Store denies controversial two-tiered queuing system

by Cormac Rae

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Elliot James (left), 16, Boroughmuir High School student

Parents and students from Boroughmuir High School complained of a two tiered queuing system at a nearby Tesco metro store.

According to reports, private school George Watson’s student were not required to queue whilst state school Boroughmuir students were allegedly made to wait in a line.

Controversy occurred when a parent and lecturer at Edinburgh University, Neil Pollock engaged in a Twitter spat with a Tesco representative. [Read more…]

Edinburgh’s Christmas Market delivers and delights

by Noemi Distefano

Photo credit: Noemi Distefano

Photo credit: Noemi Distefano

Edinburgh’s Christmas Market has opened to the public this weekend.

The market, one of the most popular Christmas celebrations in the UK, will run for six weeks until the 7th January.

Edinburgh’s Princes Street Gardens will be transformed into a veritable winter wonderland by a rich array fairground attractions, lights, buskers, artists and street-chefs.

The market has grown its reputation as one of Europe’s largest Christmas attractions.

Councillor Richard Lewis, Edinburgh’s Festivals and Events Champion, said to Edinburgh Evening News, “Edinburgh’s Christmas promises to wow once again, and the Christmas Market alongside with the Street of Light is a spectacular and mesmerising addition to what is already a brilliant line-up.”

Around 900,000 unique visitors from all over Europe are expected to fill St. Andrews Square in the coming weeks.

Hundreds of chefs and artisans are expected to open their shutters, offering nibbles, trinkets and a more magical Christmas experience.

 

Photo credit: Noemi Distefano

Photo credit: Noemi Distefano

 

Shopkeeper Judies, owner of ChristmasWorld, sells traditional German wooden ornaments. She said, “Me and my brother have been here in Edinburgh for the Christmas markets even before they became a huge event.  This is our fifteenth year in this street, and I wouldn’t like to be anywhere else.”

Norwegian shopkeeper Kari Ittervel claims that she comes to Edinburgh just for the market. A resident of Amsterdam, she flies over for just two months a year to sell her handmade pottery.

“I’ve been here for two years now, I was in London’s Christmas Market before, but it’s not even a tenth as nice as in Edinburgh’s. One day I heard that there was a beautiful market here and I resolved: ‘let’s make Edinburgh’s ladies happy with my items!’”

“The markets are amazing. Beautiful people, beautiful city, it’s just fantastic!”

It’s not just the shopkeepers who love the atmosphere. Jasmine – a tourist from Newcastle – said, “I came a long way from Newcastle, just because I think the Christmas markets are great. They bring a bit of European culture to the cities in the UK.”

“I think it is really nice, the smell is nice in the air, the sites and there are really a lot of lights and we are looking forward to go around, it is a great thing.”

The experience is certainly rich – families peer into the Gardens from the terrace of the Scottish National Gallery as the smell of burned wood and the sound of buskers fill the air.

 

Photo credit: Noemi Distefano

Photo credit: Noemi Distefano

 

The Edinburgh Christmas Market will stay vibrant with music, sounds, sights and smells until early 2017.

Tickets are right now available at www.edinburghschristmas.com

Jo Cox’s killer refuses to give evidence

by Cormac Rae

 

The Old Bailey has heard today that Thomas Mair, 53, will not give evidence in his defence.

The victim’s husband Brendan Cox reacted on twitter to Thomas Mair’s decision:

The Labour MP for West Yorkshire was murdered outside a constituency surgery, serving her community and listening to local concerns.

Jeremy Corbyn, Leader of the Labour party posted this tribute on July 15th, the date of Mrs Cox’s funeral.

[Read more…]

Andrew Burns – Edinburgh Council Leader

Edinburgh Council loses ownership of Parliament House

By Greg Barrie, Paul Hyland and Carolina Morais

In a strange series of events Edinburgh Council has unwittingly lost the ownership of the Parliament House building.

Wolves Launch Official Complaint About Racial Abuse

Credit: Wolverhampton Football Club

Credit: Wolverhampton Football Club

By Stuart Iversen

Wolverhampton Wanderers Football Club have made an official complaint to the FA and Walsall Football Club over racist abuse directed at their players.

They assert that Carl Ikeme and George Elokobi were the subjects of racial abuse at Banks Stadiums during the teams match on Saturday.

A statement on the Wolves website stated: “The complaint relates to a small number of individuals in the crowd at Saturday’s game and will not sour the good relationship that exists between the two clubs.”

Ikeme and Elokobi had both reported incidents of racial abuse during the game to members of Wolves management.

Walsall have also released a statement saying: “We are taking this matter very seriously and will fully co-operate with West Midlands Police and Wolverhampton Wanderers throughout this investigation.”

Froch vs Groves Press Conference

By Stuart Iversen

Carl Froch and George Groves have come face to face for the first time since their fight last year.  The meeting took place at a press conference earlier today, to promote their rematch at Wembley Stadium on May 31st.

The first fight between the pair saw Froch retain his WBA and IBF super-middleweight titles with a controversial stoppage.  This time round Groves is determined to even up the score.

“It was a stone-wall robbery last time.  Everyone knows it.  It brings me great joy that this is happening because otherwise this is not a fight that was going to take place.”

Froch meanwhile, is feeling rejuvenated after a Christmas off and is ready to hit the gym.  “I’ve missed the gym, I’ve missed boxing, I’ve missed hitting the bag, I’ve missed listening to (trainer) Rob (McCracken), working hard on the road runs and that’s bad news for George Groves because I’m now excited and looking forward to getting back in the gym and getting in the ring on May 31 and doing the business.”

The fight is expected to break the attendance record for a post-War fight with roughly 60,000 to 70,000 people expected.  Shattering the previous total of 55,000, set by Ricky Hatton’s fight against Juan Lazcano at the City of Manchester Stadium.

Westhuizen to leave Edinburgh

Credit: Edinburgh Rugby

Credit: Edinburgh Rugby

By Stuart Iversen

Edinburgh Rugby has confirmed that lock Izak van der Westhuizen will return to South Africa at the end of the season.

The 28-year-old signed at the start of the 2012/13 campaign from Free State Cheetahs.  However, his debut season in the capital was hampered by an ankle injury.  Despite this he has since gone on to make 19 starts in 24 appearances for the club.

Westhuizen said: “Scotland will always have a special place for me and I’ll be able to look back on a lot of good times.”

While head coach Alan Solomons added: “Sakki has done a splendid job for us this year and will continue to do so until the end of the season.  An opportunity has presented itself back in his home country that suits him and his young family.  I’m sure he will make a valuable contribution to the Kings.”

Hibernian Ladies Coach Dies

By Stuart Iversen

Morgan Lynn, a coach at Hibernian Ladies football club, has died after falling from the roof of her fifth floor balcony hotel room in Spain.  The 25-year-old was on holiday in Benidorm with two female friends when the tragic accident occurred.

Local police and the foreign office have confirmed that Ms Lynn fell from the balcony at around 3am, after her and her companions returned to the Hotel Gala Placidia, where they were staying.

Her parents Kenny, 49, and Wenda, 48, were today too upset to talk about the tragedy.

The club is yet to comment.

Team Paralympics GB win first Winter Olympics gold.

Sochi 2014 Paralympic logo

Sochi 2014 Paralympic logo

By Stuart Iversen

Kelly Gallagher has won Britain’s very first gold in the Winter Paralympics.  She claimed victory in the impaired super-G in Sochi with the aid of her guide Charlotte Evans, in a time of one minute and 28.72 seconds.

The 28-year-old from Bangor in County Down had previously taken the silver medal at the World Championships in Spain last year, but went one better in Sochi taking home the gold.

It was a huge turnaround in fortunes for the pair, who on Saturday had finished last in the downhill event.

Gallagher said: “We came last so we really had to work to pick ourselves up.  It was really hard coming from downhill into Super-G because they are similar speed events.”

The gold medal was only the start of the good news for Team GB, as Jade Etherington and her guide Caroline Powell took bronze in the Super Giant Slalom, adding to the silver they had previously won on Saturday.

Iain Test

Napier

Media Mondays – Mandy Rhodes – 18/11/2013

DownloadedFileDescribed by Tony Blair’s former spin doctor, Alistair Campbell, as insightful and provocative, Mandy was praised by the Prime Minister David Cameron for being ahead of the game for her analysis of the financial crisis and the coalition at Westminster.

Scotland’s First Minister, Alex Salmond, says her magazine, Holyrood, is “essential reading”.

Mandy’s skill lies in her ability to never be predictable in her line of attack and Tony Blair’s arch spin doctor, Alistair Campbell, who subscribes to the magazine says she has brought back good old-fashioned journalism to the field of politics.

Mandy began her career on a local newspaper in one of Edinburgh’s most deprived housing estate where she cut her teeth on stories that reflected a a society with a growing drug problem, rising poverty and the emergence of the social and medical issues related to HIV and Aids.

She went on to be part of the founding editorial team on Scotland on Sunday and continued her campaigning journalism in her role as Social Affairs Correspondent breaking front page stories on child abuse, illegal trafficking of children and groundbreaking features inside Scotland’s prisons.

She then moved into television and fronted a number of campaigning programmes exposing social inequality before moving behind the camera and working as a television documentary director with the BBC where she later hosted her own medical programme for Radio Scotland before leaving Scotland for London where she became a full time mum and part time commissioner of documentary programmes for Channel 4.

Mandy returned to Scotland in 2002 and became the editor of Holyrood magazine three years later and Managing Editor of Holyrood Communications shortly thereafter working closely with the Managing Director on the strategic direction of the business and for providing the political intelligence for the conference arm of the company.

In the eight years that she has been there, Mandy has transformed Holyrood Magazine from a niche policy publication into a must read for Scotland’s body politic and civic society. She has built a talented, cohesive and incredibly loyal team of journalists and conference researchers and encouraged and guided them in areas of specialism suited to their own particular interests, knowledge and ability. Mandy’s fortnightly ‘Editor’s Notes’ column has become essential reading for the body politic and her high-profile political profiles are regularly quoted by politicians within the Scottish Parliament and make headlines in the mainstream media.

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Media Mondays – Journalist of the Year – Lynne McCrossan – 21.10.2013

????????????????????Edinburgh based fashion writer Lynne McCrossan is to be the latest guest at the Media Mondays lecture series run by the School of Journalism.
The Style Columnist, who writes for both the Edinburgh Evening News and Scotland on Sunday, was a former resident expert on STV’s The Hour and also authored the book “A Girl’s Guide to Vintage”.
Speaking about her career, Lynne said: “It’s about picking projects you are passionate about and more often than not seizing opportunities open to you.”
Lynne will take part in a Q and A with students on Monday 21st October, 1-2pm in F10, Merchiston.

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Media Mondays – Journalist of the Year – Gina Davidson – 07.10.2013

DownloadedFileGina won the award for her story on how babies’ ashes were dumped in a mass unmarked grave at a crematorium, without the knowledge of their parents.

She also picked up the Scoop of the Year at the Scottish Press Awards.

Her investigation of the scandal at Mortonhall crematorium in Edinburgh went national with questions raised in Parliament and an independent commission set up to investigate.

Gina, an associate editor at the Edinburgh Evening News –also saw her paper receive the Team of the Year prize for the investigation.

The judges described her work as “an excellent example of investigative journalism in Scotland.”

In her career she has worked across the media – PA, national newspapers, Sundays, TV.

Gina says: “It was 15 years ago when I was last up for an award. So you know, journalism’s a marathon not a sprint”.

Gina can be followed on twitter @wornoutmumhack

Listen Here:

Media Mondays – The Rangers Story

By Alexander Neal, Lauren Elliott  and Lisa Mitchell.

BBJbqtzCcAEOLdpListen to Alex Thomson (Channel 4 News) and Mark Daly (BBC Scotland) discuss the origins of the problems Rangers faced and how the situation at present with regard to the saga. A detailed and extended talk from the pair, who provided witty insight and analysis of the events that led to the current scenario, as well as answering questions pitched by audience members.

This chronological account provides a good reference point for anyone interested in the story, and how it was covered in various forms of media. The pair discuss how they covered the story, on top of talking about how other agencies covered it and why.

This was a popular talk, with both men exploring in depth the issues surrounding possibly the biggest sports story to come from Scotland.

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Alan Clements Lecture 05/10/2012

By Lauren Elliott and Lisa Mitchell

Media Mondays

The next installment of the Media Monday lectures has arrived.  The Director of Content at STV, Alan Clements, one of the most influential men in broadcasting has come to Napier to talk about his career and his experiences in the world of media.

Listen here:

Allan Little Lecture 08/10/2012

By: Lauren Elliott and Lisa Mitchell
Media Mondays

The first of a series of powerhouse lectures by the biggest and best in British Journalism has finally been introduced to Edinburgh Napier News.  The listings of popular and influential journalistic minds will be tagged on Twitter under the name Media Mondays.  This week we had the privilege to host a masterclass starring BBC special correspondent and legend, Allan Little. In his lecture he talks about ‘good writing’ and his experiences in the field.
Listen here:

Union rules out fuel strike over Easter

By: Anna Redman

The Unite Union has decided against a possible fuel strike over Easter. However, a strike may still occur after Easter depending on the results of reconciliation talks.

The government caused panic buying when they advised drivers to fill up their tanks. Independent experts suggest petrol demands rose 172% yesterday.

In a statement, assistant general secretary Diana Holland said: “We do still retain the right to call strike action for after Easter should those talks break down.”

Approximately 90% of UK forecourts are supplied by Unite union. Almost 2,000 members are at the centre of this dispute.

Unite’s drivers are responsible for delivering fuel to Shell and Esso garages as well as a number of supermarkets.

On Thursday, Energy Secretary Ed Davey advised that people “just need to do the sensible thing… get a full tank of petrol, not a half-tank”.

Energy investment creates 800 jobs in Leith

Renewable Energy creates 800 new jobs in Leith.

By: Anna Redman

Spanish wind turbine manufacturer, Gamesa, has announced their plan to create around 800 jobs at a new Edinburgh plant, which will be located in Leith.

The investment in this project will be about £125m.

[Read more…]

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.

Local residents campaign to preserve Craighouse grounds

by Boyana Atanasova

Local community group Friends of Craighouse Grounds & Woods have raised concerns on the future of the green fields and woodland surrounding Craighouse in Morningside, Edinburgh.

They oppose plans by the new owners, which include constructing 3-storey housing across the orchard, with 3 to 4-storey blocks dotted about the site, and a very substantial new-build development across a large area of Open Green Space and mature woodland.

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None of these proposals were previously mentioned by the developers in their recent public consultation exhibition.

Friends of Craighouse have created an online petition to show “how much people care about this incredible site and how much they value this important green space and woodland where kids play, people walk, run, enjoy the spectacular views, walk their dogs, watch the fireworks, and catch a glimpse of some of the local wildlife.

Read more about the campaign on Friends of Craighouse Grounds and Wood‘s website.

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3.15 TV Bulletin

Round-up of today’s main headlines.

Edinburgh Pandas get Lynx effect

by Pamela Paterson

It has been announced today that the two Giant Pandas at Edinburgh Zoo are to be sponsored by deodorant company Lynx during their mating season.

New Lynx advert featuring Edinburgh Zoo's pandas

Lynx is well-known for its advertising campaigns, which claim the opposite sex cannot fail to be wooed by the effect of their deodorant, known as the ‘Lynx Effect’. The new advert comes as the pandas begin their long-awaited breeding season.

While the pandas themselves are unlikely to be sprayed with the alluring scent of Lynx, smell does play a pivotal role in panda breeding. Iain Valentine, director of research and conservation at the zoo said, “In the wild pandas use a chemical communication system involving pheromones to locate and choose mates. Scent is also how males will know that female pandas are fertile.”

Tian Tian, the female panda, is being closely monitored by the zoo to see when she is ready to conceive. Pandas have been found to be notoriously picky in choosing their mates, however the zoo believes their pair are getting along well and there is a good chance they could mate.

Lynx, meanwhile believes its knowledge in attracting the opposite sex could come in handy when the Pandas choose to get together.  Kieran Danaher from Lynx said, “It’s the perfect time to partner with Edinburgh Zoo and use our attraction know-how to help out with panda mating season.”

Radio Broadcast 1

Midday Bulletin 13/3/2012

Midday Bulletin 14/3/2012

4.15 Bulletin 14/3/2012

Perth prepares for the biggest kilt run

A number of celebrations for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee are planned to take place in Perth this June.

As part of the events, the town will try to break the world record for people running in kilts. All participants should run an 8 km route beside the Tay.

Kilt runners will be invited to raise funds for two nominated charities – ABF The Soldiers Charity and PKAVS that supports vulnerable people in Perth and Kinross.

Charles Dunphie, from ABF The Soldiers Charity, said: “We’re hoping to see loads of different tartans out on the day.”

A parade of 1 000 pipers from 400 bands will also take place on 2 June.

Perth will hold one of the largest civic celebrations of the Jubilee in Scotland and it hopes to be granted city status.

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