Lollipop man under fire from council for second time in a week

John Hunter has been in trouble with the council twice in one week

John Hunter has been in trouble with the council twice in one week

By Cara Sulieman

A SCHOOL crossing guide has comes under fire from council chiefs for the second time in a week about flaunting health and safety rules – this time for having children’s stickers on his lollipop.

John Hunter was first rapped for giving out high-fives and sweet so children crossing at his junction in Edinburgh, sparking efforts to keep the 69 year old in his job after he threatened to quit.

Now he has had his stick CONFISCATED by bosses after children begging him to stay slapped stickers on the sign urging him to stay.

Angry pupils and parents at Corstorphine Primary School started a campaign to keep their favourite lollipop man after the 69-year-old threatened to quit over the ban on high-fives.

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Susan Boyle’s barmaid jailed in drugs operation

The Happy Valley Hotel

The Happy Valley Hotel

By Cara Sulieman

A BARMAID from the pub which helped launch the career of singing superstar Susan Boyle has been jailed as part of a major drugs operation.

Shamed Ann Marie McCormack, 32, put police in touch with a notorious drug dealer in Blackburn, West Lothian, after an elaborate sting operation involving brave undercover officers.

They posed as drug abusing thieves in a bid to win her confidence so she would help them buy drugs.

And yesterday the mother of two was jailed for two years and nine months despite not having made any money from the deals herself.

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University offers course on computer hacking

Edinburgh Napier

By Cara Sulieman

A SCOTS university is offering high school pupils the chance to learn how to hack into computers.

Edinburgh Napier University is holding the two hour course – entitled Computer Hacking for Dummies – as part of its school half-term programme.

The institution claims that the aim of the lesson is to teach kids how to protect their computers against attacks over the internet, but they are promising that students can “practice their hacking skills”.

The news comes on the same day that Glasgow-born Gary McKinnon lost his extradition appeal at the High Court in London for allegedly hacking into the Pentagon’s computer system.

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Library and Historic Scotland staff take a decade’s worth of stress leave

By Oliver Farrimond

STAFF at two of Scotland’s sleepiest government bodies have taken almost 10 years of time off since the beginning of 2008 – due to STRESS.

Under-pressure personnel at Historic Scotland and the National Library took 3,544 days off between them, with some stretches of absence lasting for hundreds of days.

Under data obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, just 87 staff account for the total.

Reasons cited for National Library staff taking time off include depressive illness and anxiety as well as stress.

A spokesperson from the National Library of Scotland said: “When it comes to our staff, the National Library of Scotland is committed to putting their welfare first and we will continually strive to make more positive changes.”

“We recently carried out a ‘Work Positive’ survey amongst our staff members, the results of which were broadly positive. Continue reading

Famous UFO story of Edinburgh pair to be made into movie

By Oliver Farrimond

THE story about two Scots friends who claimed they were abducted by aliens is finally to be made into a movie.

Garry Wood and Colin Wright, now 46 and 42, claimed to have had a close encounter in 1992 when they were beamed aboard a UFO while driving near a reservoir near Balerno on the outskirts of Edinburgh.

The pair have always stuck by their claims and even passed a lie detector test on TV.

Now DBR Entertainment, based in London and Los Angeles, is financing the production of the film which comes after almost two decades of controversy over the X-Files-style encounter.

News of the film comes just as NASA plans to crash a satellite into the surface of the Moon to see if it is capable of sustaining life. Continue reading