Real Great Escape logbook goes for 10 times value

By Rory Reynolds

A PRISONER of war logbook put together by airmen at the famous Great Escape camp has fetched 10 times its estimated value after a heated bidding war yesterday.

The scrapbook, owned by Private William Macdonald, details life in Stalag Luft III, where the famous Tom, Dick and Harry tunnels were dug by the inmates.

It was sold to a private UK bidder for £3,200 after being kept by Macdonald all of his life at his home in Garve, Ross-Shire, until he passed away in 2003.

The book is believed to have been passed around the camp, and contains pictures, drawings, names and verses, from different the airmen.

It includes one short poem by airman Lindsay Greenaway, who drew a sketch of the tunnel and wrote: “Silently below the surface/ twenty five feet below the floor/ thus the Goons have cause to curse us/ and remember – One-o-Four/ 24-3-43”. Continue reading

Rare ‘J.A.’Rowling uncorrected edition sells for £1,600

By Rory Reynolds

A RARE “uncorrected proof” edition of the first Harry Potter book in which J.K.Rowling’s name is spelled wrongly has been sold for £1600 at auction.

The plain-covered Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone – written by ‘J.A.Rowling’ – was snapped up by a collector at Edinburgh’s Lyon & Turnbull auction house yesterday.

The copy was one of a handful sent to critics and booksellers around the UK to build up interest, after publishers Bloomsbury paid Rowling an advance of just £1,500.

The book, which also contains spelling mistakes and grammatical errors, was written on an old manual typewriter in coffee shops around Edinburgh as Rowling struggled as a single mother on benefits.

The Philosopher’s Stone was the first of seven novels, and the basis for the hugely successful film series, which brought Rowling a personal wealth of more than £500million. Continue reading

Scots rescue crews head for Haiti after devastating quake

By Rory Reynolds

HERO Scots rescuers are preparing to jet out to disaster stricken Haiti after a massive earthquake ravaged the Caribbean island.

A 15-strong team from Fife-based International Rescue Corps were last night finalising plans to fly into the disaster zone as the death toll mounts.

Julie Ryan said their advanced equipment could help make all the difference on the ground.

She said: “We have an arrangement with the airlines, the equipment is all weighed, logged and tagged already, and it will go on the same plane as the crew.

“We have a thermal imaging camera, and we have another camera that we can feed into rubble to find people who are trapped. Continue reading

Suffering dog found at roadside

The sick dog at the vets before it was sadly put down

By Cara Sulieman

ANIMAL welfare chiefs were last night investigating why a suffering dog was left wandering a Scots street to die.

The animal was rushed to vet surgeons for emergency after being found on a roadside in West Lothian.

But the dog was in such a bad state she couldn’t be saved despite receiving urgent treatment for dehydration and vomiting and diarrhoea.

Her coat was particularly badly affected, with her rear covered in matted faeces.

The Scottish SPCA were called in after a passer by found the animal next to the road in Strathlogie, Westfield.

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Darren Day snaps on arrival at court over drink driving claims

By Michael MacLeod

ACTOR Darren Day unleashed a foul-mouth rant at photographers on his way to court today (Wednesday).

The We Will Rock You star – who was described as “seething” – let rip in the street and was threatening to waiting snappers.

Day was scheduled to appear in court on drink drive charges before his case was continued until next week.

Italian born Lorenzo Dalberto, a photographer with one Edinburgh-based news agency, was among those on the receiving end of Day’s outburst and said he feared for his expensive camera gear.

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Geologists warn of deadly aftershocks following Haiti quake

By Rory Reynolds

SCOTS geologists have warned that deadly aftershocks from the Haitian earthquake could blight the international community’s rescue efforts for weeks to come.

The aftershocks – some nearly as violent as the initial quake – are expected to lead to the collapse of already damaged buildings, endangering the lives of rescue workers and trapped victims.

International aid workers are still battling to save those trapped under the rubble after the massive magnitude 7.0 quake rocked the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince.

Earthquake experts at the British Geological Survey in Edinburgh said that there have been more than 30 aftershocks since the main quake.

Dr Brian Baptie, Seismologist at the British Geological Survey said: “Earthquakes of this size always have aftershocks that can last for many weeks.

Continue reading