Shopkeepers slam cigarette display ban

By Christine Lavelle

NEWSAGENT and corner shop owners claim the ban on cigarette displays will devastate their businesses and are asking for it to be removed.

Many also believe that the move could increase cases of shoplifting, as staff will have to rummage under the counter for tobacco products.

Shopkeepers have been lobbying ministers to reverse the ban, claiming the new legislation could cost recession hit businesses more than £2000 to implement.

Others have said they believe it will lead to a growing black market trade, taking customers away from their shops. Continue reading

Serious road crash lands seven people in hospital

By Christine Lavelle

SEVEN people have been taken to hospital after two vehicles collided in Fife.

Two children were seriously hurt and three others injured after the people-carrier they were traveling in collided with the other vehicle.

All five have been taken to Ninewells Hospital in Dundee, along with a woman who was driving the car.

The female driver of the other car – a Renault Clio – was trapped for almost two hours, while fire crews worked to free her from the scene on the A92, just south of the Tay Bridge.

She is believed to have multiple injuries, and was airlifted to Ninewells as soon as firemen were able to cut her out using a hydraulic extracting device. Continue reading

Student digs charges have gone up by almost a fifth

By Christine Lavelle

ACCOMMODATION at Scotland’s universities is more expensive than it has ever been – soaring past the £200 a week mark.

The most expensive student digs are at Edinburgh University, which has seven premium halls of residence rooms available, costing £216 per week.

St Andrews University in Fife, which houses 4,000 students a year, comes in second, where some en suite, catered rooms are costing £188, and even self catered rooms cost a massive £135 per week of term.

This is almost twice the amount charged at the University of the West of Scotland in Paisley, which boasts the cheapest halls in Scotland. Continue reading

Thousands sent pornographic ‘junk mail’ through letterboxes

By Christine Lavelle

JUNK mail was given a new meaning for thousands of Scots – who received a 48-page porn brochure through their letterboxes.

Royal Mail is launching an investigation after shocked recipients alerted them to the adult movie error last week.

Among the 350 titles available to buy from the brochure were The Horny Handyman, Wobbling Whoppers and Mucky Malcolm’s Misadventures.

Bill Parker, 74, a retired police officer from Edinburgh, was one of the shocked residents to receive a brochure in the post.

He said: “I am as broadminded as the next man but I am amazed this type of material can be legally sent through the post. Continue reading

Scottish hospitals taking extra care when Pope visits

By Christine Lavelle

HOSPITAL staff across central Scotland will be on high alert next month as Pope Benedict XVI visits the country.

Fears over the Pontiff’s health have led to every hospital on or near the route he will take between Edinburgh and Glasgow being asked to get ready.

When the Pope makes any visit overseas it is common for one hospital to be designated to him in the event of an emergency, and in Glasgow it is not unusual for this to happen when any high profile VIP visits.

But – it is highly unusual that all hospitals along the route are being placed on alert. Continue reading

Man trapped after car comes off the road in Borders

By Christine Lavelle

A MAN had to be cut out of his car by firemen after he came off the road in the Scottish Borders.

A fire crew used hydraulic cutting equipment to free the man after the crash on Saturday night, and he was taken to hospital with a shoulder injury.

His 20-year-old female passenger also suffered minor injuries in the accident near Choicelee Farm, Berwickshire, but she had managed to make her own way out of the vehicle.

Both were taken by ambulance to Borders General Hospital to be checked over. Continue reading