Number of ‘forced adoptions’ rocket as more children taken into care

More children than ever are being taken into care

By Cara Sulieman

THE NUMBER of parents having their children taken off them and put up for adoption has rocketed in the last three years.

The number of cases where social services have stepped in and forced adoption have doubled in the past three years and a record number of kids have been taken into care.

Figures obtained from Scotland’s councils under the Freedom of Information laws reveal that 203 children were put up for adoption by social workers last year.

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Hundreds gear up for weekend Rat Race across Edinburgh

By Cara Sulieman

HUNDREDS of people are gearing up for this year’s Rat Race urban assault course of jumping, swimming, cycling and running taking place in Edinburgh at the weekend.

Competitors will take over parts Edinburgh and surrounding area as they do their best to complete the challenges along the way.

Navigating their way around the city, teams could be asked to eat haggis, dook for apples, play water polo or race a space hopper at the various check points dotted around the Lothians.

The 600 competitors won’t know the route until the day of the event itself and have no idea what challenges to expect.

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BREAKING NEWS: Further cancellations for Scots flyers

By Michael MacLeod

THOUSANDS of Scots travellers will wake up this morning (Monday) facing the likelihood of being held hostage by the Icelandic volcanic ash cloud.

They were warned by the Scottish Government that the outlook would “worsen” today following dozens of cancellations on flights yesterday.

Speaking at an emergency briefing, finance secretary John Swinney predicted disruption would spread further in the next 24-hours due to the Eyjafjallajokull volcano’s continued eruptions and unpredictable wind directions.

And in a further sign of the dust’s impact on every-day life, the Met Office yesterday (Sunday) began issuing a five-day ash spread forecast as part of its standard weather announcements.

And late last night Easyjet bosses admitted they were as in-the-dark as their passengers as to which areas of the country would see planes grounded.

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Volcanic ash leaves thousands stranded

All flights in and out of the UK have been cancelled

By Cara Sulieman & Rory Reynolds

THOUSANDS of passengers were stranded at Edinburgh Airport today (Thursday) as volcanic ash moved into Scottish airspace.

Staff at the airport greeted passengers with the news that the eruption in Iceland had sent a mass of ash into the atmosphere, grounding planes across the country.

With little information available, holiday makers and businessmen were trying to find other ways to get to their destination.

Tanya Nixon, 27, and her seven-year-old daughter Alessia Fortunato had travelled from Sunderland to fly with Ryanair to Pisa.

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Scotland’s should forget tourist cliches claims branding expert

By Andrea McCallum

SCOTLAND should stop relying on shortbread and tartan to sell itself to the world – according to a branding expert.

David Guy, business director for the Edinburgh branch of marketing firm Billington Cartnell, said Scotland should take a leaf out of Ireland’s book and promote the warmth of its people.

And he said VisitScotland’s current approach was failing to exploit the perception of the Celtic nations as warm and friendly.

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Parents of student lost at sea said they are losing hope

Craig McIntyre

By Cara Sulieman

THE parents of a Scots student swept out to sea off Ireland described losing their son as a “nightmare” and are coming to terms with the fact that he is probably dead.

Craig McIntyre was sunbathing with a friend on a secluded Irish beach when he was hit by a wave and swept in to the Atlantic on Saturday.

The 20-year-old, from the Colinton area of Edinburgh, was staying in a friends holiday home hear Baltimore, County Cork when he went down to the sea to watch the sunrise.

His parents David and Morag McIntyre travelled to Ireland as coastguard and Garda searched for their son, but with rescue efforts now into the fifth day they are losing hope.

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Sir Robin blasts SFA for no Team GB

By Cara Sulieman

THE SCOTS-BORN mayor of the London borough hosting the 2012 Olympics has blasted the SFA for blocking a British football team.

Sir Robin Wales is furious that there won’t be a UK team taking part in the football tournament saying it would be the only way for Scotland to “be in with a chance of qualifying for something”.

The Kilmarnock supporter is the civic head of Newham, where most of the Olympics main venues are based, including the athletes’ village.

Speaking about the decision to only have English players in the British team, the 55-year-old said: “It may not be popular with everyone but why not have a British football team?

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