Scottish Enterprise spent £100,000 on hiring celebrities

SCOTTISH Enterprise has splashed out more than £100,000 to hire celebrities such as Fred MacAulay, Jackie Bird and Sally Magnusson to attend business events.

The extravagant spending included £23,500 for former Ryder Cup golfer Sam Torrance to give golf tips to potential investors and £12,000 to comedian Fred MacAulay to act as master of ceremonies at two dinners.

The move has been branded “desperate” by David Whitton MSP, Labour’s shadow finance spokesman.

The quango receives a £276 million budget to help boost economic growth in Scotland.

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Firefighters hold emotional memorial for Ewan Williamson

Chief Fire Officer Jimmy Campbell and Convener Mike Bridgman place a wreath in memory of Ewan

By Cara Sulieman

FIRE-FIGHTERS paid tribute to fallen hero Ewan Williamson at an emotional service to mark the first anniversary of their colleague’s death in Edinburgh yesterday.

Lothian & Borders Fire & Rescue Service chief fire officer Jimmy Campbell – in his first day in the job – led tributes to the 35-year-old who died rescuing people from a blaze at the Balmoral Bar on Dalry Road last July.

Joined in laying a wreath outside the brigade’s HQ by Convener of the Fire Board Mike Bridgman, Mr Campbell said:  “It’s been a difficult year for the service.

“This wreath is being laid in memory of Ewan – it’s to remember Ewan’s family, his friends and his work colleagues.

“This was a very emotional day for the service. It’s a year on since we lost Ewan Williamson and it was a time for us to come together.

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Tennent’s backs minimum pricing

By Cara Sulieman

THE Scottish Government yesterday toasted a decision by brewing giants Tennent’s to back plans for minimum pricing on alcohol.

But opposition parties said the glass was remained half empty and called on more to be done to tackle the nation’s drink problem.

Tennent’s said the government’s plans “could be part of the solution” to Scotland’s binge drinking culture.

It comes just a day after figures showing the true extent of Scottish schoolchildren’s relationship with alcohol – with 300 under 16 admitted to hospital with booze-related diseases every year.

The Scottish Government welcomed the move by the Glasgow-based beer makers, saying that Tennent’s had “nothing to fear” over the new proposals.

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Tragic Christmas Day driver laid to rest

By Cara Sulieman

A TRAGIC driver who died on Christmas Day after crashing on the icy Scottish roads will be laid to rest next week.

Malcolm Reid suffered fatal injuries in the accident on the A90 Forfar to Brechin Road at around 1pm on Christmas Day.

The 71-year-old died at the scene despite the efforts of a medical trauma team and ambulance crew.

His wife June – who was travelling in the car with him – will be joined by his children and grandchildren at the service at Mortonhall Crematorium Main Chapel on Monday January 11.

June, 73, was seriously injured in the smash, and was treated for bruising and internal injuries at Ninewells Hospital in Dundee.

The couple were driving along the A90 just hours after it had reopened after black ice closed parts of the dual carriageway.

Malcolm’s children and their partners – Carolyn, Mike, Lynda and Lex – will be joining June at the funeral at 3pm on Monday.

Scots willing to pay more for a ‘green’ home

Peter Gregson and his new solar panel

Peter Gregson and his new solar panel

By Cara Sulieman

SOME old style light-bulbs will be banished from shop shelves from today(Tues).

New EU laws see first 100w incandescent bulbs disappear from stores as part of a gradual phasing out of all energy heavy lighting.

But it seems most Scots would go a step further and pay more for a house if it were fitted out with green energy gadgets.

A new survey has found that almost half the population would spend more for a house that has renewable energy sources.

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Bravery of officers recognised at awards

By Cara Sulieman

A HERO police dog called Zico who helped ‘collar’ four crooks within the space of a fortnight has received a top gong from his Chief Constable.

But the four-year-old German Shepherd wasn’t allowed into the ceremony at police HQ in Edinburgh today to pick up the meritorious award.

Instead his handler PC Christopher Lannin took the lead and collected the Chief Constable’s Commendation on the brave dog’s behalf, admitting: “Even in modern policing, there’s still no substitute for a good nose.”

The pair had tracked down a suspect who had fled after attempting to break into a car with his friends.

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