Tag Archives: Edinburgh

NHS Lothian miss over 3000 diagnostic targets

Photo Above: Stethoscope © Darko Stojanovic on Pixabay

NHS Lothian figures show that over 3000 people’s waiting time has exceeded six-weeks. This figure is inclusive of diagnostic tests to detect cancer.

The Scottish government’s targeted time has dropped from 78.6 per cent to 69.7 per cent in a year, and in September an estimated 3583 patients did not meet the referral target. This makes Lothian figures the worst in Scotland.

Continue reading NHS Lothian miss over 3000 diagnostic targets

The Edinburgh – Glasgow co-op on Homeless World Cup

Photo Above: Book Signing at Event © Philip Wegmann

By Ian McNally and Philip Wegmann

An Edinburgh church was transformed into a football sanctuary yesterday, as it played host to the launch of a new book about the Homeless World Cup.

“Home Game” by Mel Young and Peter Barr was unveiled in Augustine United Church on George IV Bridge and featured a Q&A with the authors followed by a book sale and signing session.

Continue reading The Edinburgh – Glasgow co-op on Homeless World Cup

Edinburgh to Glasgow train times to take 42 minutes by 2018

Photo Above: Glasgow Queen Street © Geof Sheppard on Wikipedia

By December 2018 the Edinburgh to Glasgow Improvement Programme will deliver the fastest journey time of 42 minutes between Glasgow and Edinburgh’s city centre’s.

Continue reading Edinburgh to Glasgow train times to take 42 minutes by 2018

McDonald’s Princes Street loses 24-hour license

Photo Above: Princes Street McDonalds © Ian Thomson on Geograph

By Aisling Press

McDonald’s on Princes Street will no longer be permitted to open around the clock. The city centre branch, which is popular with late-night revellers, will now remain open no later than 3am.

The move comes after the City of Edinburgh Council Licensing Sub-Committee withdrew their consent for the all-night opening hours. Continue reading McDonald’s Princes Street loses 24-hour license

18-year-old girl expelled from Fettes College

AN 18-YEAR-OLD has been expelled from Fettes College after being caught in bed with another student on a school trip.

The unnamed girl, who was on an international trip with the college at the time, was reprimanded following the event and further expelled by Headmaster Geoffrey Stanford.

The £33,000-a-year college issued the following statement:

“Fettes College regret to confirm that an 18-year-old girl broke the School Rules on an international school trip.”

The college – that has seen the likes of ex-Prime Minister Tony Blair, Hollywood A-lister Tilda Swinton and ex-Rangers supremo Sir David Murray through their doors – hasn’t been without controversy in recent years.

The ordeal comes just two-months after a 16-year-old student was expelled after attending chapel on ecstasy.

2009 saw four students expelled for a boozy, drug-fuelled party off campus.

The ecstasy ordeal was discovered following the strange behaviour of the student in the morning chapel service.

He was taken to hospital where it was discovered he had been taking the class A pills, some of which were found in his room.

Concerning last weeks expulsion, Fettes continued: “As a result of her actions she is no longer a pupil at Fettes college.”

Fundraising appeal to save Leith community centre #backdrbells

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At the launch of the fundraising appeal to #backdrbells

Dr. Bell’s Family Centre launches an appeal to raise £25,000 by April 2017, following a 50% reduction in external funding last year.

Speaking at the launch on Monday, January 23rd, Sarah Gunn, Chair of the Board said:

“Dr. Bell’s Family Centre is a vital community hub which has supported over a thousand struggling families in Leith over the last ten years.

“We are unique in offering family support in the same location as a crèche and community cafe, meaning we provide a wide range of support: from counselling, to helping parents into employment, low cost childcare to English language skills, and offer a place to make friends and build up confidence.

“We want to do more, but to do that we need to be here, this year and in the long term.

We are calling on the local community, businesses and partners to come together to back Dr Bell’s and support our campaign.”

Former Leith MSP and Board member Malcolm Chisholm remarked on the significance of the launch by noting that there was “not many events with three MSPs” attending. He also added:

“Although the reduced services we currently provide are targeted at those who need them the most, there is a high demand for family support in Leith which we believe is not currently being met.

“Raising these funds will put us back on a secure footing to continue delivering vital support services to the local community”

SNP MSP for Edinburgh Northern and Leith, Ben Macpherson also spoke at the launch:

“For over 10 years Dr Bell’s Family Centre has supported hundreds of local children and many local families, often at difficult times. Their services provide significant, and sometimes critical, support for the local community.

“I will continue to do all that I can, working with local councillors, NHS Lothian and others, to help keep this excellent centre open for Leith.”

 

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Miles Briggs, MSP for Lothian Conservative; Sarah Gunn, Chair of the Board of Trustees; Ben MacPherson, local MSP for Leith; Malcolm Chisholm, former MSP for North East Edinburgh and Minister for Health, now a Board Member; Alison Johnstone, MSP Scottish Green Party

The cause has drawn attention and support from across the political spectrum. Kezia Dugdale, leader of the Scottish Labour Party, said:

“The Family Centre provides some incredibly effective resources through the family support work, counselling and employability services provided by the centre and also provides crèche facilities for hundreds of children, many of which come from some of the most deprived parts of our city, providing them with a better start to life.

“I wholeheartedly support the efforts of all the staff and volunteers at Dr Bell’s Family Centre in the fundraising campaign and will continue to support the centre whenever and however I can.”

The centre was set up as a partnership between the City of Edinburgh Council, NHS Lothian and the local community in 2006 in response to a recognised need within the community for family support.

Leith Councillor, Adam McVey commented:

“Dr Bells has been there for people who needed their services, now Leithers are needed to help secure those services for the future”

Rachel King from Mental Health and Wellbeing department of NHS Lothian expressed her interest in helping students help Dr Bell’s:

“Family based support such as that available at Dr Bell’s Centre is very positive for parents mental health and wellbeing, and the centre offers a welcoming space, great food and staff who can work with the whole family.

“I would be very interested in hearing from university groups that could be involved in the fundraising for this unique family support centre”

Donate here and spread the word using #backdrbells.

UKIP leader calls for ‘Scot Free’ House of Commons

Newly elected UKIP leader, Paul Nuttall, called for English devolution in his first speech as UKIP leader after previously suggesting Scottish MPs should be removed from the House of Commons.

Nuttall has replaced Nigel Farage as permanent leader of the party winning over 60% of the vote in the second Leadership election the party has had in the last 3 months.

The last election was labelled a shambles after Diane James, elected in September, resigned only 18 days later, subsequently leaving the party.  Nigel Farage had to return to the leadership role while a new leader was selected. Continue reading UKIP leader calls for ‘Scot Free’ House of Commons

Vote with your butt: Ballot Bins appear in Leith

In the wake of President-elect Donald Trump’s victory in the US, City of Edinburgh Council have installed light-hearted ‘Ballot Bins’ along Leith Walk.

The bins allow the people of Edinburgh to vote with their cigarette butts and settle the question: ‘President Donald Trump: ‘Dream’ or ‘Nightmare’?’

These bins are part of an initiative that wants to set up more Ballot Bins in the Leith Walk area later this month. It is hoped that the campaign will ease strain on the area’s communal bins, identified as ‘hotspots’ for overflowing and fly-tipping. Continue reading Vote with your butt: Ballot Bins appear in Leith

Top 5 things to do this week

Photo credit: Andrew Hamilton
Photo credit: Andrew Hamilton

 

I’m sorry to disappoint, but we’re looking at yet another week of freezing weather… Since it always helps to have a reason to leave the house, here’s our top 5 things to do in Edinburgh this week: Continue reading Top 5 things to do this week

UPDATE: Virgin Train derailment

Picture Copyright Chris Watt/ Virgin Trains Media Room
Picture Copyright Chris Watt/ Virgin Trains Media Room

Virgin Trains has responded to this morning’s incident and the continued disruption at Edinburgh Waverley station today.

A Virgin train was derailed in Edinburgh this morning, and has left subsequent services in disarray. Customers are being advised to check the Virgin Trains website for live travel information.

Listen to the statement from a Virgin Trains operator, Thomas Thornton, 37,  below:

Scottish councils facing over half a billion pounds of funding deficit, Accounts Commission warns

Scottish councils could face a combined funding gap of £553 million by 2018, according to a new report from the Accounts Commission.

The Commission has said that, based on figures from 2015-16, local authorities are currently in good financial health, but have found that there could be “significant challenges” in the future.

Forecasting for the next three years, the report’s analysis found that the deficit between the money that councils raise and what they spend could rise from £87 million in 2016-17 to £553 million in 2018-19.

The figures would mean that a large proportion of local authorities would face a gap in funding higher than the amount currently held in reserves.

The Commission acknowledged that councils face, “increasing pressure from a long-term decline in funding, rising demand for services and increasing costs such as pensions.”

More to follow later.

Scottish Council worries about the impact on front line services funding.
Scottish Council worries about the impact on front line services funding.

BREAKING NEWS: Virgin Train derailment in Edinburgh

Virgin train customers face severe disruption after a train derailment in Edinburgh this morning has left multiple services delayed.

Trains have been trapped in Waverley Station, or cancelled entirely, after the incident this morning.

Customers are being assured they will be able to travel on alternative services immediately before or after their previously selected journey.

Picture Copyright: Chris Watt info@chriswatt.com Virgin Trains Media Room
Picture Copyright: Chris Watt/Virgin Trains Media Room

More on this story will follow.

Live travel information can be found on the Virgin Trains website.

ScotRail’s Future Off The Tracks

by Stuart Mackenzie and Noemi Distefano

 

Photo credit: Rory Nicolson
Photo credit: Rory Nicolson

 

Scotland’s Transport Minister Humza Yousaf will make a statement to the Scottish Parliament tomorrow to discuss how to improve the Scottish rail services.

This follows pressure from opposition politicians for him to speak after various proposals to bring ScotRail’s railways into public ownership.

ScotRail, who are currently operated by Abellio, have been experiencing various problems with their services.

Charlotte Twyning of Abellio UK, told to the BBC: “It should be recognised that half of the rail industry is already nationalised in the form of Network Rail and any operator that runs the ScotRail franchise – public or private – does so to a tightly specified Scottish government contract.” Continue reading ScotRail’s Future Off The Tracks

New Taxi Rank Plans For Edinburgh Waverley Under Fire

by Rory Nicolson and Alena Yakushova

Network Rail have confirmed plans for the new taxi rank at the New Street car park for Edinburgh Waverley Station.

The move comes two years after taxis were banned from collecting and dropping off commuters from within the station for security reasons.

Lothians MSP Miles Briggs has been gathering support to re-open the indoor taxi rank. He launched a petition in August and is bringing the debate to Parliament on the taxi rank plans this Thursday. Speaking about the New Street Car Park Taxi Rank plans, he said:

“This is welcome news in as far as it goes but this is only a limited improvement as it is only a pick up rank and not one where passengers can be dropped off.

 “This rank will also be considerably further away from the central parts of the station compared to previous ranks so there will still be real challenges for blind, disabled and infirm travelers.”

Continue reading New Taxi Rank Plans For Edinburgh Waverley Under Fire

Rapist sentenced to eight years in prison

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A 52-year-old man has been sentenced to eight years’ imprisonment for rape, at Edinburgh High Court earlier today.

Hugh Wade was convicted of having repeatedly raped an eight-year-old girl from August 2008 till August 2011 in Glasgow.

He was given a 10-year custodial and supervision disposal including eight years of incarceration and two years of open release with supervision.

Hugh Wade appeared in court today after having been kept in custody in Glasgow, where the trial took place last month.

When the sentence was read by Judge Maciver a handful of people sitting in the gallery expressed sighs of what appeared to be both relief and sadness.

Hearts and Hamilton Share the Points in 6 Goal Thriller

by Andy Grozier

 

Photo credit: Hearts Press Office
Photo credit: Ron MacNeill

 

Hearts managed to rescue a point last night against Hamilton in a six goal thriller at New Douglas Park.

Jamie Walker had put the Edinburgh side ahead in the 8th minute with a brilliant half-volley only to see the Accies draw equal before powering ahead after half-time.

The home side’s come back started with a stunning free-kick from Ali Crawford. The 25 year old midfielder drifted the ball into the bottom corner of Jack Hamilton’s net from 20 yards. The strike was a touch of class in what was a mostly scrappy first half.

Rakish Bingham extended the Accies lead with a calm finish just moments into the second-half after a smooth passing move sent the striker through on goal. Bingham then got his brace in the 68th minute, beating the Hearts keeper with a shot fired into the bottom corner.

Continue reading Hearts and Hamilton Share the Points in 6 Goal Thriller

Things to do in Edinburgh: Our Top Five Picks

Stuck in the capital this week with nothing to do?

Follow our guide to find the best events Edinburgh has to offer.

5. Cinderella – Australian Ballet

STARRING: Leanne Stojmenov, Kevin Jackson, Ako Kondo

Released: 23rd November

cinderella

Picture Credit: The Australian Ballet

The classic fairy-tale returns in beautiful ballet form. If you can’t catch it on stage, you can watch it at your local cinema.

The award-winning, critically acclaimed production, created by Alexei Ratmansky, one of the world’s most sought after choreographers, puts a twist on the story of Cinderella, her wicked step-mother and sisters and of course the glass slipper.

After sell-out seasons in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Adelaide the show makes its way to London, and various Vue cinemas, including Edinburgh. Be sure not to miss the ball.

4. Book Week Scotland

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Scotland’s Book Week

Book Week Scotland, beginning yesterday (Monday 21st) and is running until Sunday 27th November, is a week-long event organised by the Scottish Book Trust that aims to celebrate reading and writing amongst the young and the old alike.

Featuring talks and events across the country, speakers like Tony Robinson and Val McDermid will be appearing to discuss their work and love of literature face to face with readers. For any lover of books, this one is not to be missed!

3. Edinburgh Christmas Market

Photo credit: Noemi Distefano
Photo credit: Noemi Distefano

Edinburgh Christmas Market began this week with Sunday’s Light Night which officially launched Christmas in Edinburgh.

From Five Guys Named Moe on the West End stage to the European Christmas Market in Princes Street Gardens.

Get yourself in the Christmas mood and visit the event website for more information.

2. Ghost The Musical starts run at Edinburgh Playhouse

Ghost the musical starts its six day run tonight at Edinburgh Playhouse.

playhouse

Ghost starts it’s run at Edinburgh Playhouse

Produced by Bill Kenwright, the musical presents a re-imagined, unchained version of the classic film.

Sarah Harding, the Girls Aloud singer and actress, makes her stage debut as Molly, opposite Hollyoaks star Rhys Ashworth as ‘Sam’.

The musical is based on the Academy Award winning movie and starred the late Patrick Swayze, Demi Moore and Whoopi Goldberg.

The plot sees Sam tragically murdered in front of his girlfriend, Molly. Sam finds himself trapped between this world and the next. Assisted by a psychic Sam attempts to communicate with Molly and protect her from imminent danger.

With such a popular film to live up to, fans have been promised the iconic scene in which Molly sculpts a pot to the Righteous Brother’s Unchained Melody will also feature in the musical version.

Ghost The Musical premieres tonight at the Edinburgh Playhouse at 7.30pm and runs till Saturday and then tours to Nottingham.

1. The Heavy

Good news for all Edinburgh-based fans of indie rock, as ‘The Heavy’ are playing at Liquid Room tonight.

The band from Bath will be presenting their new Album ‘Hurt & The Merciless’, which is in line with what makes The Heavy’s style so unique: powerful arrangements, rough guitar sounds and, of course, Kelvin Swaby’s haunting voice – all topped up with drums that promise to make an audience go wild.

Tickets are available online

 

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

160 youths to endure a night sleeping rough on the streets of Edinburgh

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The sleep out will be taking place on George Street. Source Rock Trust

The Sleep-out for youths, organised by Rock Trust, is due to commence on the 25th November.

12-21 year olds will spend the night sleeping on Edinburgh’s streets in a bid to fundraise for homeless Scottish youths.

The sleep out will be held on George Street, under the watchful eye of Rock Trust volunteers. Rock Trust have been organising the sleep out since its founding  25 years ago, which helps aid the young homeless to find housing.

Last year’s  Sleep Out events raised over £50,000 with the proceeds helping to fund projects around Edinburgh and Lothian shelters.

Continue reading 160 youths to endure a night sleeping rough on the streets of Edinburgh

Stu’s Spotify Specials

Stuart shares his Spotify picks

Music buff Stuart Mackenzie shares his top musical picks with edinburghnapiernews.com

 

  1. Bruno Mars- Chunky

With the new album’s release on Friday, the Hawaiian harmoniser is out with yet another funky single that is sure to get you grooving. Following suit from the previous jams such as, ‘24K Magic’ and ‘Versace on the Floor’, the new song indulges us into a romanticised old-skool aura with classic R&B sounds. The only thing that mattered back then was the size of your girls’ backside. Opening with a short synth-solo, we are instantly greeted by the classic Mars voice and a nostalgic, Rapper’s Delight-esque bassline. As the tune increases in party-rhythm, we are led into a chorus melody not dissimilar from past-hit Treasure. The song may not make it to party-anthem territory, but it is definitely one to tap your toes and cruise with your crew to.

  1. John Mayer- Love on the Weekend

Mayer the Player has been toying with his social media followers all week with the repeated announcement of this song dropping. This single is the first we’ve heard of the mega-guitarist since his acclaimed stab at Country in 2013 (not counting his cover of Beyonce’s ‘XO). The ‘Your Body is a Wonderland’ singer is back to his usual ways with his new single, well almost. The drum-tempo and guitar-strumming sounds like classic Mayer, however his vocal melody and production have remnants of his Country-exploration. Mixing the two genres is far from a bad thing as the romance song is a tranquil piece that reminds you that after 15 years of making music, Mayer has still got it. His seventh album is definitely one to look out for.

Continue reading Stu’s Spotify Specials

Local News March 16th

Edinburgh flat prices

The introduction of the second-home tax next month are making investors and landlords snap up flats in Edinburgh. While new figures show an overall drop in flat prices across Scotland, prices in Edinburgh have skyrocketed over the last three months.

Most congested city

A8 through Corstorphine has been named most congested road in the UK outside London. A new study suggests that drivers using a 5 mile stretch of road between Princes Street and Maybury Road waste on average 43 hours a year in gridlock. 5pm on Tuesdays has been specified as the peak of congestion. Liberal-Democrat councillor Paul Edie says plans for major housing developments in the west of the city means more traffic for the A8.

Oxgangs primary school closed again

Oxgangs primary school, where a part of the wall blew off during Storm Gertrude in January, has been closed again. Edinburgh City Council said the decision was taken following a safety inspection. The school is set to reopen after the Easter holidays on Monday 11 April.

23rd Edition of the Italian Film Festival

by Giulia Maccagli and Koldo Sandoval

edinburgh_filmhouse_home_of_the_edinburgh_international_film_festival_620_414_80_s

The 23rd edition of the Italian Film Festival comes at the Filmhouse in Edinburgh, this year.

The Festival, running from the 4th until the 17th of March, has venues in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Dundee, and Inverness.

At the Festival, there is the best of the “cinema italiano”, currently on a high with the global and awarded success of Paolo Sorrentino, “Youth”.

Alongside established directors’ names, such as Sergio Castellitto, Cristina Comencini, and Gabriele Salvatores, there are also new film directors, as Edoardo Falcone and Laura Bispuri.

The Festival will see on its screen renown Italian  actors, as Valeria Golino, Elio Germano, and Jasmine Trinca.

This year the Festival has a special focus on Luchino Visconti, an Italian theater, opera, cinema director, and screen-writer, in the occasion of the 40th anniversary of his death.

The 23rd edition of the Italian Film Festival is also welcomed by the Italian Government’s new support to the film industry with an investment of £300 million a year.

 

British Art Show 8 in Edinburgh

Edinburgh University Old College Quad quad, after refurbishment.

By Laurenci Dow & Paloma Ferreira

The British Art Show 8 is a touring exhibition that provides a vital overview of the most exciting contemporary art. This year it tours the work of over 40 artists to four cities across the UK, Edinburgh being one of the chosen UK cities. Three venues across Edinburgh will be housing different exhibitions with free admission to all of them. The show will be hosted in Edinburgh from the 13th of February to the 8th of May. The public is welcome to can access information regarding opening times and visitor information for each gallery from this website: http://britishartshow8.com/page/about-exhibition-1514.Screen Shot 2016-02-22 at 15.02.50

Our art correspondent Laurenci Dow reports from the Talbot Rice Gallery, featuring the following artists: ÅbäkeLawrence Abu HamdanBenedict DrewRyan GanderMelanie GilliganHayley Tompkins and Eileen Simpson and Ben White.

Visit the gallery website for more information: Talbot Rice Gallery.

 

Edinburgh voted world’s fourth most beautiful city

Edinburgh_from_Calton_Hill_with_Dugald_Stewart_Monument_3
A view of Edinburgh from Calton Hill

 

By Anthie Parisi & Giulia Maccagli

Edinburgh has been voted the fourth most beautiful city in the world, coming just behind the renown European cities of Paris, Florence, and Rome.

The Scottish capital was ranked fourth in a Rough Guide poll of its readers.

The Rough Guide said of the city: “It’s famed for its excellent annual festival, but there is more to Edinburgh than great comedy and arts – and according to our readers, it’s beauty.”

 

 

 

Culture, architecture, nature (Arthur’s seat, S. Giles Cathedral and the Castle, just to name some) blend together making Edinburgh a magical city to visit or live in.