Battle of Bannockburn: What was it all about?

The Battle of Bannockburn, fought on 24 June 1314, was one of the most famous events in the wars of independence.

BBC iWonder

Find out why Stirling Castle is the bloody heart of Scotland.

It saw the Scottish king, Robert the Bruce, win a key victory over the English forces of King Edward II, despite being outnumbered two-to-one and facing what was regarded as the finest army in the medieval world.

On the 700th anniversary of the battle, here's some things you might not know about the historic event.

line break
Where was it?
Robert the Bruce has been immortalised in statue on monument hill

It was one of the most famous battles ever fought, yet nobody's sure exactly where it happened.

The backdrop was Stirling Castle, the last English stronghold in Scotland, which was targeted by Robert the Bruce while on the comeback trail during the wars of independence.

The constable of Stirling agreed to hand over the castle to the Scots unless an English force arrived to relieve him by the 24 June, 1314. They duly pitched up the day before.

Robert the Bruce was thought to have made his stand on what's now known as "monument hill", where his statue sits.

It was the perfect location, on high ground with a good field of vision, but getting up the hill to fight would have been a massive challenge for the English forces.

It seems more likely the main battle was fought on a nearby area of flat, low ground known as the Carse, where the English had camped overnight.

line break
Medieval minefields

The main threat to Robert the Bruce's forces was the fearsome English cavalry - 2,000 heavily armoured men on horseback which could easily crush infantry.

Thinking outside the box, Bruce ordered hundreds of holes, measuring just a few feet, to be dug at a crucial point where the English army was advancing.

The small pits, capable of snapping horse's legs, meant the cavalry had to stick to a narrow Roman road and, unable to fan out, were left defensively vulnerable.

line break
Killer hedgehogs

Robert the Bruce's other great anti-cavalry weapon was the "schiltron" - a body of troops wielding long pikes.

Looking like massive, deadly hedgehogs when fully formed, the tightly packed group would deploy their pikes on three levels, creating a wall of death which was virtually impregnable to a heavy horse charge.

This sort of tactic was vital, since many Scots couldn't even afford swords let alone war horses, and often had to make do with axes and other working tools.

line break
First blood
Dave Ramsey (left) and Liam Varga from the Clanranald Trust enacting the Battle of Bannockburn

The day before the main battle saw an event which set the tone for what was to come.

Sir Henry De Bohun, a young English knight looking to make a name for himself, arrived with a vanguard and spotted Robert the Bruce addressing some of his men.

The story went that Sir Henry, seeing an opportunity to take down the king of Scots, got tooled up and charged.

Bruce, armed with only an axe, reciprocated - taking out Sir Henry with such force that his head split in two, from the skull to the chest bone and breaking his weapon in the process.

Another much less heroic account, said to be from an English eyewitness, stated that Robert the Bruce clocked Sir Henry and cut him down as he was trying to get away.

Whatever the truth, English cavalry then charged the Scots, only to taste the sharp end of the schiltron. It was a morale dampener.

line break
For Love
Kind Edward

As King Edward arrived on the battlefield, did he also see the defeat of Robert the Bruce as an opportunity to settle a personal score?

Back when his father, Edward I, was on the throne, he hired an English nobleman called Piers Gaveston to work in his son's household.

Chroniclers at the time suggested Gaveston and the then Prince Edward became lovers, and the noble was sent into exile.

On his elevation to the throne Edward II recalled Gaveston, bestowing on him an earldom and other gifts.

But the other English nobles - enraged at the privileged access he had to the king - banded together to see Gaveston banished once again.

According to the contemporary book Vita Edwardi Secundi (The Life of Edward II) the king, sometime before Bannockburn, promised full recognition for Robert the Bruce as king of Scots, in return for giving Gaveston refuge in Scotland.

Bruce refused, and Gaveston was eventually executed in England as an enemy of the state.

Put simply, King Edward may have seen victory at Bannockburn as an opportunity to avenge Gaveston's death on Robert the Bruce, and force the English nobles to bow to his will.

line break
Praying for victory
Dave Ramsey from the Clanranald Trust in a Battle of Bannockburn re-enactment

The main battle commenced not long after first light, on 24 June, 1314.

The Scots forces emerged from Balquhidderock Wood, before getting down on their knees to pray.

The tactic was more than spiritual - it allowed the captains an extra crucial few minutes to form up the battle lines.

Nevertheless, across the Carse, King Edward, with his 16,000-strong army, thought the Scots were surrendering.

He got a shock when prayers finished and the Scots got ready to attack.

line break
Pride before a fall
Spear at Bannockburn battle re-enactment
chain mail

As battle drew near, a row broke out between King Edward and the Earl of Gloucester, one of England's most powerful men, who complained the English forces needed rest after spending a sleepless night in marshland getting eaten alive by dreaded Scottish midges.

When the King accused the 23-year-old earl of cowardice in front of the men, Gloucester - pride fully dented - jumped on his horse and charged towards the Scots.

He was promptly met by - yes, you guessed it - the business end of the schiltron, and carved up in full view of both sides. Another morale dampener.

line break
Watery grave

The Bannockburn - the long, snaking waterway after which the battle was named - proved to be Kind Edward's nemesis.

As battle commenced, the Scots troops moved across the battlefield, to close the gap.

Penned in between the burn - in reality a large river in some places - and the Scots pikes, the English forces had no choice but to cross back over the waterway, which was almost impossible because of the heavy armour they wore.

As the Scots pushed forward, the English became penned between the water and the enemy pikes, and panic gripped the ranks.

Even the archers, the other feared super-weapon of the English army, ultimately proved useless because the crush left them with no space to shoot arrows.

line break
The getaway
Stirling Castle

Sensing defeat, King Edward's minders dragged him off the field and fled towards Stirling Castle.

But he wasn't well received by the remainder of the English garrison, who told him it was best if he didn't come in.

Shunned by his own men, the king ended up in the East Lothian coastal town of Dunbar, where he got a lift back to England on a ship.

line break
What changed?

It's arguable whether the Battle of Bannockburn settled all that much.

Despite the outcome, Robert the Bruce had to wait another 14 years for the king's son, Edward III, to recognise him as the rightful king of an independent Scotland.

Bruce died just one year later, in 1329, while the wars of independence rumbled on.

However, if nothing else, Bannockburn did establish Robert the Bruce as someone who was not to be messed with.

line break

The Quest for Bannockburn, presented by Neil Oliver and Tony Pollard, is being shown on BBC Two at 20:00 on Sunday, 29 June.

Tony Pollard and Neil Oliver

More on This Story

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Scotland stories


Scotland Live

    15:14: Hail's bells

    Hailstones as big as pickled onions have fallen over Ness in the north of Lewis.

    Hailstones that fell over Ness on Lewis

    Local resident Heather Campbell said the hail fell during a thunderstorm at about 23:00 on Thursday.

    The hailstones were the same size as a pickled onion, or a £1 coin. Last week, hail as big as a 5p fell over Lamlash on the Isle of Arran.

    Intense thunderstorms and hail have also been experienced in Ardnamurchan in the Highlands.

    15:07: McCoist to see out notice

    Rangers manager Ally McCoist has revealed he plans to see out the full 12 months of his notice period.

    McCoist in training

    The Ibrox club announced on Monday that McCoist had decided to quit after three-and-a-half years in charge.

    The manager refused to reveal the reasons behind his decision to resign from the Championship outfit.

    But when asked if he planned to see out the full 12-month notice period set down in his one-year rolling contract, he said: "Yes. Absolutely."

    14:52: Water fiasco Reevel Alderson BBC Scotland's social affairs correspondent

    A company supplying water and drainage to commercial premises has been asked to apologise to a couple from the Lothians for charging them almost £1700, even though their premises had no water connection.

    The couple, who have not been identified, operate a business from premises in their garden, which has neither water nor drainage supplied.

    However, two years ago they received the bill from the company, Business Stream, which is part of Scottish Water.

    It insisted the premises should pay water charges - even though it had already admitted no drainage charges were due.

    The public services ombudsman, Jim Martin, said Business Stream had levied the bill based on information it had not checked.

    Scottish Water has already apologised and cancelled charges and Business Stream has been told to do the same.

    14:43: 'Cover up' police officer sentenced

    A police officer who covered up threats to firebomb a pub and kneecap the landlord has been ordered to carry out 300 hours of unpaid work.

    Colin Rae

    While off-duty, PC Colin Rae, 31, helped a friend fit decking at the Kings Arms Hotel in Fenwick, East Ayrshire.

    The owner was later threatened after the bill was not paid. Rae asked to take the case but did not make a crime report.

    At Kilmarnock Sheriff Court, he pleaded guilty to neglect of duty and breaches of data protection in May 2012.

    14:33: Thief attacks mother pushing pram

    A thief who shoved a mother to the ground while she was pushing her toddler in a pram is being sought by police.

    The woman was attacked as she crossed a car park and walked onto a cycle path going towards Birniehill in Bathgate, West Lothian.

    The incident happened at about 18:00 on Thursday as the 21-year-old walked from Morrison's supermarket.

    The attacker took her handbag and fled along the cycle path back in the direction of Morrison's.

    14:24: Work starts on third hybrid ferry

    First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has marked the start of construction of Scotland's third hybrid ferry.

    Ms Sturgeon cut the first steel during a visit to Ferguson Marine Engineering Ltd (FMEL) on the River Clyde.

    The Hallaig

    The £12.3m contract to build the new vessel, known as Hull 727, was awarded in September.

    It is Ferguson's first major contract since it was rescued from closure by Clyde Blowers Capital earlier this year.

    14:10: Bute snub National Division BBC Sport Scotland

    Shinty's National Division has been dealt a major blow with Bute refusing to take their place in the league for the forthcoming season.

    Shinty action

    A second league reconstruction plan in as many years was agreed at the recent Camanachd Association annual meeting.

    Bute had initially opposed the original changes last season but did take their place in the National Division.

    They finished bottom, however, and are unwilling to take their place next term due to the demands of the schedule.

    14:01: BBC Radio Shetland News

    A charity installs defibrillators on Whalsay's pelagic fleet. We've more on Good Evening Shetland at five thirty.

    Fishermen with defibrillators in front of boats

    Read more about the defibrillators here.

    13:51: Riding the jet stream rollercoaster Judith Ralston BBC Weather presenter

    One minute we are seeing wet, windy and mild conditions the next thing it feels like winter is here to stay.

    This pattern of constantly alternating weather looks set to remain with us in the run up to Christmas. So what's causing it?

    Judith Ralston at the weather map

    Over the last month we have been subject to a weather pattern which has been oscillating between drier, brighter, colder weather and milder, cloudy and wet conditions.

    To the south west of the British isles we have an area of high pressure which has been there, or thereabouts, for a while and to the north of Scotland we have seen several areas of low pressure, or weather systems, passing by at regular intervals.

    Keep up to date with the weather where you are.

    13:39: Bogus workmen dupe OAP

    Bogus workmen who stole jewellery and money from a 85-year-old man in Edinburgh are being sought by police.

    The man was in his Westfield Road flat at 16:30 on Thursday when a man called at his door claiming to have been carrying out work in the common stair.

    The man asked for access to the property to check water pressure and was allowed entry by the occupant.

    After asking the elderly man to go into the kitchen to check his taps, the bogus workman left the flat.

    A short time later the man realised that various items of jewellery and a three-figure sum of cash had been taken from the bedroom.

    Officers believe two men were involved in the theft.

    13:28: Hospital death complaint upheld Eleanor Bradford BBC Scotland Health Correspondent

    The Scottish public services ombudsman has upheld a complaint from a family whose daughter died after waiting on a trolley in an accident and emergency department in the run up to Christmas two years ago.

    crosshouse hospital

    The woman was admitted to Crosshouse Hospital on 15 December 2012 and died three days later from a blood infection.

    She was not given pain relief while she waited four hours on a trolley and her vital signs were not properly monitored.

    The Ombudsman said NHS Ayrshire and Arran failed to provide proper nursing care.

    13:15: The Scotsman


    Aberdeen church left without pews at Christmas as order delayed.

    Read the full story here.

    13:06: Bug hits second hospital

    Annan Community Hospital has been closed to new admissions while a ward remains shut at Dumfries Infirmary due to a suspected winter sickness bug.

    Annan Community Hospital

    Outbreak control measures remain in force at the Dumfries site to prevent the illness spreading.

    Ward 16 is closed and seven patients and three staff have now reported symptoms of sickness and diarrhoea.

    At Annan Community Hospital, five patients have been struck down with a similar illness.

    12:57: Peterhead loses power auction

    Peterhead power station has lost out on a capacity auction designed to avoid blackouts in future years.

    Peterhead Power Station at night

    The government's first capacity market auction saw power firms secure more than 49GW of electricity generation capacity.

    SSE won agreements to provide a total of 4,409MW of capacity for 2018-19.

    But several SSE plants, including Peterhead, failed to win contracts. The company said existing operations at Peterhead will not be affected.

    12:51: Edinburgh Evening News


    NHS Lothian fined £40k for 'serious safety failings' over death of OAP at Western General.

    Read the full story here.

    12:44: Bannatyne fraud: Second arrest

    Police investigating an alleged multi-million pound fraud at a business empire owned by Dragon's Den star Duncan Bannatyne have arrested a second man.

    Duncan Bannatyne

    The 43-year-old was detained on suspicion of fraud and has been bailed pending enquiries. A 45-year-old man was arrested last week.

    The Bannatyne Group, which is based in Darlington, runs health groups and hotels across the country.

    12:36: McInnes at Dons 'for long-term' BBC Sport Scotland

    Derek McInnes insists his work at Aberdeen has only just started as he revealed his long term future lies at Pittodrie.

    Aberdeen manager Deerek McInnes

    The 43-year-old has revitalised the Premiership outfit since taking charge in March 2013, guiding the Dons to League Cup glory last season.

    "We feel as though we've just started something," McInnes said.

    "As good as things are at the moment, we feel there is a lot of improvement to come both on the pitch and off it."

    12:28: TripAdvisor appeal lost

    The owners of a guest house have lost an appeal in their bid to obtain the details of the writers of two bad reviews of their premises.

    Martin and Jacqui Clark, who run the business in Kinlochleven, maintain that one report was false and that another set out events that were fictional.

    TripAdvisor had challenged the move over its competency, claiming that there is no jurisdiction.

    The couple had appealed against an earlier court ruling on their bid.

    The Clarks wanted to sue the writer, or writers, for defamation.

  19. 12:19: Your pictures - Get involved

    Take a look at this week's gallery of your pictures from across the country.

    Reindeer in the Cairngorms

    Lynsey Craig from Glasgow took this picture of reindeer in the Cairngorms. Email us your pictures and we will use the best.

    12:08: Conductor assault appeal

    An unprovoked attack on a conductor on a train has sparked a witness appeal from British Transport Police.

    The 39-year-old conductor was punched in the stomach "for no apparent reason" by the man who had boarded the 12:30 Edinburgh Waverley to Aberdeen service at Stonehaven on 18 December.

    The attacker, who was under the influence of alcohol, is described as being about 5ft 7in in height and wearing a light-coloured baseball cap, a light brown and green jacket, a dark jumper, dark trousers and dark blue trainers.

    PC Craig Allan, the BTP officer in charge of the inquiry, said: "Rail staff should be able to work in an environment free from the threat of encountering violence or anti-social behaviour."

    11:59: Stressed or chirpy?

    Scientists from Glasgow University are using thermal imaging cameras to gain a remarkable insight into the lives of Scotland's birds.

    Their work is designed to find a new way of measuring stress in the natural world.

    Thermal image of birds

    A sparrowhawk on a string has a key role. Watch here as BBC Scotland's environment correspondent David Miller travels to the shores of Loch Lomond to find out more about the project.

    11:52: Stranger danger Evening Express


    North east schools on stranger danger alert after man approaches pupil.

    Read the full story here.

    11:45: Oil deal signed

    Norwegian oil and gas giant Statoil has awarded a major oilfield services contract for its Mariner development in the North Sea.

    Computer image of the Mariner Field

    The deal will see Schlumberger Oilfield UK use its Aberdeen base to provide most drilling and well services for the project.

    The value of the contract, which will start in January and last for four years, was not disclosed.

    The Mariner field is about 150km (93 miles) east of Shetland.

    11:41: Standard Life expansion Douglas Fraser Business and economy editor, Scotland

    tweets: Standard Life Investments expands to new-build on St Andrew Sq Edinburgh: 10 new offices from Tokyo to Stockholm, expanding existing ones

    11:33: Crofts winner

    Scotland's crofting industry has brought in almost £86m in the last year.


    The figure was revealed in a government report which also said that more than 150 new crofts have been set up in the last four years.

    However, ministers said attracting young people into the industry was still a challenge.

    11:26: Reality check

    Police Scotland has concluded its inquiries into allegations about a virtual reality device developer's crowd-funding campaign.

    vrAse headset

    Eyedak, which has operations in Edinburgh and Gran Canaria, is creating a headset called vrAse. It turns images on a smartphone screen into 3D visuals.

    Police were working with the firm after claims were made against it.

    A spokeswoman for Police Scotland said the force would be taking no further action after completing its inquiries.

    11:19: Oil prices - Your views

    Shirley: Putting heating oil in my tank cost me £100 less this week. Delighted!

    Euan, Glasgow: Despite the high house and rent prices in Aberdeen you would never think the city is home to such a prosperous industry. Workers don't spend their earnings in the city and rather spend on their quarterly Dubai holiday. Hopefully a less decadent industry will result in a better local economy.

    Jim, Glasgow: People should take care what they wish for with regards to the oil prices as many pension companies have very large amounts of people's money invested in them.

    John, Aberdeen: I work in the oil industry and yes, there is certainly an area of concern up here, but the oil is still in the ground and it still has to and will come out.

    11:10: Police annual report Reevel Alderson Home affairs correspondent, BBC Scotland

    The Scottish police service watchdog has said it is too early to say whether the intended benefits of creating a single force have been realised.

    The inspector of constabulary, Derek Penman, said although savings targets for the first year of the new force were achieved, financial challenges persist.

    Police pass out at Tulliallan

    In his annual report, he said genuine engagement with communities will help Police Scotland to be successful.

    He called on local authorities to assert themselves in expressing their concerns where national decisions impact on their areas.

    11:05: Monsters of the deep

    Researchers at Aberdeen University have taken pictures of the world's deepest-dwelling fish.


    Several species, including huge crustaceans called supergiants, were filmed 8,145 metres (26,715ft) down - beating the previous depth record by nearly 500 metres.

    They were discovered during an international expedition led by Aberdeen University to the Mariana Trench in the Pacific Ocean.

    10:56: Black Eye Friday

    Emergency services are bracing themselves for one of the busiest nights of the year as hordes of revellers are expected to hit bars and clubs for "Black Eye Friday".

    Empty bottles in a bin

    Tonight is believed to be the busiest evening for work Christmas parties, and pubs, bars and clubs are expecting a night of bumper sales.

    Insp Stuart Wilson, from Dumfries and Galloway, told BBC Scotland: "We all know that today is one of the busiest days for people going out to enjoy the festive celebrations, and I think we all want to have an environment where people can do that safely and securely.

    "So we're not trying to be party poopers. It's about giving people some hints and tips that they may want to follow to keep themselves safe and enjoy themselves."

    10:47: We're on a road to snowhere

    It's pretty snowy on the higher routes today. Traffic Scotland tweeted this picture of the A9 at the Slochd summit earlier.

    They are advising drivers to take care and drive to the road conditions.

    Snowy A9
    10:35: Pay up for the cup Chris McLaughlin BBC Sport

    tweets: SPFL announce QTS as sponsor for League Cup. Three game deal including #Celtic v #Rangers semi final. BBC understands deal worth 6 figures.

    10:30: New NHS Grampian chairman

    NHS Grampian has been named Prof Stephen Logan as its new chairman.

    Prof Stephen Logan

    Prof Logan will take up the post in January following his retirement from his current role as senior vice-principal of the University of Aberdeen.

    His appointment comes after Bill Howatson retired as chairman of NHS Grampian in October amid concern from senior clinical workers of a staffing crisis at the authority.

    Prof Logan has previously been a board member of NHS Grampian and held the role of chairman of Grampian University Hospitals NHS Trust, between 1998 and 2004.

    10:23: Pheastive pheasants

    There will be some rather posh Christmas dinners on tables in Aberdeenshire this year.

    Pheasants in the snow

    An alliance of gamekeepers, estates, local councillors, charities and volunteers will be delivering game to vulnerable people in their communities, in an effort to tackle rural poverty.

    One estate, Tillypronie, will supply pheasants, while Balmoral will donate logs and vegetables. One gamekeepers' shooting syndicate will also offer venison.

    10:18: Council agrees £42.8m of savings

    A package of savings totalling £42.8m over four years has been agreed by Highland Council.

    The cuts include a reduction, but modernisation, of the local authority's gritter fleet and the loss of 60 secondary school teaching posts. Cutting 15 other secondary teaching jobs and reducing the time P4-7 pupils spend in class have been delayed.


    Councillors voted on the package at a meeting of the full council in Inverness on Thursday. It involves £17.4m savings in 2015/16, £10.2m in 2016/17, £6.3m in 2017/18 and £8.9m in 2018/19.

    The public sector union Unison has said the savings will lead to the loss of 700 jobs across council departments. The council said 312 full-time posts will be lost over the four years. It will seek to avoid compulsory redundancies.

    10:10: On the roads BBC Scotland Travel Latest
    • There are very tricky driving conditions because of snow on the A93 Braemar to Spittal of Glenshee
    • It is the same on the A9 at Dalwhinnie where one southbound lane is also blocked by a broken-down car transporter near Auchterarder
    • Police in Glenrothes have been in touch warning of black ice on main and side roads across Fife, especially in north east Fife, they say there have been about a dozen accidents so take care
    • And there are wind warning across many of the bridges, the A87 Skye, A9 Dornoch and Kessock, A90 Forth road and the A898 Erskine Bridges all with wind warnings so drive carefully
    10:04: Wickerman founder seriously injured

    The co-founder of the Wickerman Festival is in a critical condition in hospital after being found badly injured at his farm.

    Jamie Gilroy

    Jamie Gilroy was found with a serious head injury on the farm at Dundrennan, near Kirkcudbright, on Thursday.

    Police Scotland are investigating, but said they were not looking for anyone else in connection with the incident.

    The Wickerman Festival has been held at Mr Gilroy's East Kirkcarswell farm for 13 years.

    09:58: Oil recovery starts here

    Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander told BBC Scotland: "The measures that were taken on tax and also the creation of the new oil and gas authority, all of those I think send a broader message which is that the government and the industry are now working hand in hand to make sure that we can absolutely maximise the recovery of resources."

    09:53: Time to slope off

    Today marks the silver anniversary of the opening of the Nevis Range snow sports area.

    Nevis Range

    Marian Austin, managing director of Nevis Range, has been there since it opened and she spoke to BBC Scotland about attracting people to ski in Scotland.

    She said: "People are always really keen at this time of year to get their skis on for the first time, so if we get a nicer day tomorrow we'll certainly be trying to get open.

    "We don't pretend that we're competing with Europe but what we have is skiing on people's doorstep."

    09:46: Death driver avoids prison

    A woman who knocked down and killed a pensioner after she was "distracted" by loud music playing in her car has been told to carry out unpaid work.

    Anna McCallum, 23, crashed into 79-year-old John Gordon Sangster on Baltic Street, Montrose, as he stepped out to cross the road in December 2012.

    McCallum, of Johnshaven, Aberdeenshire, admitted causing death by careless driving at Forfar Sheriff Court.

    A community payback order with 240 hours of unpaid work was imposed.

    Sheriff Gregor Murray also banned the first offender from driving for four years.

    09:39: Oil industry- government reaction

    The chief secretary to the treasury Danny Alexander has said the government is doing all it can to boost the industry.

    danny alexander

    Mr Alexander said: "It is very, very important to send a message out to investors around the world that the North Sea is open for business, that it's a great place to invest and that there are huge opportunities on the UK continental shelf still."

    09:32: Llambias takes lower salary

    Rangers have told the Stock Exchange that new chief executive Derek Llambias' salary will be "significantly lower than previously offered for this position".

    Rangers chief executive Derek Llambias

    The Scottish Championship club made the announcement of Llambias' appointment to the Stock Exchange ahead of Monday's annual general meeting.

    Englishman Llambias, 58, a former managing director of Newcastle United, joined Rangers' board as a non-executive director in November.

    The SFA announced last week that it was investigating Newcastle owner Mike Ashley's role at Ibrox.

    09:21: Victoria Cross tribute

    A special ceremony is to take place in Dumfries for the first soldier from the region to receive the Victoria Cross during World War One.

    James Mackenzie

    A commemorative paving stone will be unveiled - and a wreath laid - in memory of Pte James Mackenzie.

    Relatives will attend along with representatives of the British Legion and Scots Guards Association.

    Pte Mackenzie was the first of five servicemen from Dumfries and Galloway awarded the VC during World War One.

    09:13: Oil job losses

    Oil companies will shed around 5% of their workforce because of the price slump, Sir Ian Wood believes.

    Sir Ian Wood

    He said "I'm going say 5% to 10% but hopefully, as the oil price recovers and reinvestment emerges in what should be a better climate, we'll get these jobs back.

    "My view right now is that we will probably stay at $60, $65, $70 (a barrel) and at that stage it's probably about 5%."

    Text 80295 09:04: Now on Morning Call BBC Radio Scotland

    Kaye Adams asks: Is the oil crash good news or bad news for you and Scotland? And, with warnings over 'Black Eye Friday', do we need to be told how to behave at Christmas?

    Listen to the show live here and text us your views on 80295.

    08:55: Douglas Fraser Business and economy editor, Scotland

    tweets: Peterhead power station fails to secure contract as back-up for grid shortfalls. Owner SSE says there are other market options for it

    08:47: Minister in maternity leave first

    Scotland's children's minister has become the first member of the Holyrood government to take maternity leave.

    Children and Young People Minister Aileen Campbell

    Aileen Campbell, whose last day in the job was on Thursday, is being covered by fellow SNP MSP Fiona McLeod, until she returns.

    Ms Campbell, who is eight-and-a-half months pregnant, is expecting her second child.

    First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said supporting parental leave was vital to "shattering the glass ceiling".

    08:40: More Sir Ian Wood

    Sir Ian Wood believes the oil industry will emerge from its current problems.

    He said: "If we play this correctly, the next 18 months will be tough but by that time we should begin to see some uplift in the oil price.

    "The industry should be leaner and a bit meaner and in better shape with the tax regime and new regulator to try and springboard a good recovery."

    08:35: All the gossip

    Celtic will reject any "insulting" offer they may receive from Crystal Palace for Kris Commons in the January transfer window.

    kris commons

    New Livingston manager Mark Burchill says he has enlisted the help of former Celtic bosses Martin O'Neill and Kenny Dalglish in his attempt to plot a win over Rangers in the Scottish Championship.

    Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes has praised Shay Logan for the manner in which the defender conducted himself during the case against Celtic winger Aleksandar Tonev, who was accused of racially abusing the Englishman.

    It's another day of Scottish football gossip and you can read our full review here.

    08:30: Court video 'is a gimmick'

    There has been criticism of new proposals for victims and witnesses to pre-record video statements rather than give evidence in court.

    video camera

    Brian McConnachie QC, chairman of the Criminal Bar Association, told BBC Radio Scotland's Good Morning Scotland programme he was not convinced by the idea, which he described as "a bit of a gimmick".

    He said: "The suggestion is that, somehow or other, witnesses will not have to attend court. I don't see how that works because they will still require, if the evidence is controversial, to be cross-examined."

    08:24: Oil industry latest

    Sir Ian Wood has said it is very important to "keep a perspective" about the North Sea oil situation, although it is inevitable that jobs will be lost.

    He said: "It's going to be a tough time. There will be a slow-down in investment. It's probable there will be some loss of offshore production, perhaps up to 10% at $60 to $65 a barrel.

    "There will be sadly the loss of a number of jobs because in these circumstances oil companies and supply chains do everything they can to cut back on costs and get some kind of positive cash flow."

    08:21: Sir Ian Wood: It's over the top

    Oil industry expert Sir Ian Wood has said talk of a North Sea crisis is "well over the top and frankly far too dramatic"

    Sir Ian Wood

    Sir Ian told BBC Radio 5Live: "This is an industry that thinks and invests long term.

    "Investment decisions are made on the anticipated price of oil two to three years down the road.

    "And of course right now there's really significant momentum in the industry, a big investment programme in the last few years, some new fields coming on stream and also some fields recently given the go ahead which will go ahead."

    08:06: No appeal over spitting ban

    Dundee United will be unable to appeal against Paul Paton's two-match ban for spitting at Aberdeen's Jonny Hayes, the Scottish FA has confirmed.

    Dundee United's Paul Paton and Aberdeen's Jonny Hayes

    That is despite United having vowed to contest Thursday's decision by an independent judicial panel.

    It found the 27-year-old midfielder guilty despite wide-man Hayes having claimed his opponent was innocent.

    The SFA has confirmed there is no route of appeal in their fast-track judicial system for Paton.

    08:00: Pakistan massacre tribute

    Glasgow City Council will fly the flag of Pakistan at half-mast from the City Chambers today in a show of support following the Peshawar school massacre.

    Jahangir Hanif and school scene

    The attack by the Pakistani Taliban at the Army Public School on Tuesday killed 132 school children and nine staff and injured 125 others.

    Two grand-nephews of Glasgow Southside Central SNP councillor Jahangir Hanif were among the dead.

    The attack was to avenge Pakistan army-led operations against the Taliban.

    07:56: 'Work together'

    Experts are warning that tumbling oil prices have left the North Sea oil industry "close to collapse".

    James Bream, of Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce, says the oil industry and government need to work together.

    oil rig

    He told BBC Radio Scotland's Good Morning Scotland programme: "We need to see continued leadership on cost. We also need to see some significant moves on taxation in the North Sea."

    07:46: Wrap up warm BBC Scotland Weather Latest

    There is a Met Office yellow "be aware" warning for snow showers and ice affecting the Highlands and Grampian as well as highland Perthshire. Expect some difficult driving conditions on the high road routes.

    It will be a cold, windy day with plenty of blustery showers, most frequent across northern and western Scotland.

    The showers will fall as snow over high ground and to lower levels in some areas. They also bring a risk of thunder, especially across the far north.

    Fewer showers and more sunshine across the Borders, Angus and eastern Aberdeenshire and there is widespread ice risk north of the Central Belt.

    It will feel bitterly cold in the strong westerly wind, with gales along western and northern coasts touching severe gale force at times.

    07:40: North Sea 'crisis'

    Labour's energy spokesman Lewis Macdonald has said he believes there is a crisis in the oil and gas industry.

    Mr Macdonald told BBC Radio Scotland's Good Morning Scotland programme: "We are facing a critical situation. There are perhaps 1,000 jobs already gone, there are thousands more jobs on the line.

    "Yes, this is a crisis for the industry. It's not a crisis that can be controlled directly by government on its own. Clearly some of this is a consequence of global oil prices and global market shifts.

    "The responsibility of government is to respond urgently, address the issues that are raised and give some sense of confidence to people who are working in the oil and gas industry."

    07:35: Rangers name Llambias as chief executive BBC Sport Scotland

    Rangers have confirmed to the Stock Exchange the appointment of existing board member Derek Llambias as their new chief executive.

    Derek Llambias arrives at Ibrox for talks
    07:31: On the ferries BBC Scotland Travel Latest

    Quite a bit of disruption on the ferries today. Best advice is to check ahead before you travel.

    • On Cal Mac's Barra and South Uist service, the 07:40 Barra sailing and the 14:30 out of Oban to the islands are cancelled
    • No sailings to Colonsay
    • Skye, that's Armadale to Mallaig off as well
    • No sailings to the Small Isles from Mallaig
    • The morning sailings to Islay are off
    • Today's Arran sailings are under review and quite a few are on amber alert
    • Orkney ferries has cancelled today's North Ronaldsay sailing, its rescheduled for tomorrow leaving Kirkwall at 09;00
    • On Northlink there is some disruption between Aberdeen and Lerwick, the 17:00 sailing from Aberdeen will sail directly to Kirkwall, but may face delays
    • The 19:00 sailing from Aberdeen to Lerwick is under review and the 17:30 from Lerwick is cancelled
    • And there is possible disruption on Argyll ferries between Gourock and Dunoon
    07:27: Oil industry crunch

    Experts are suggesting that the oil industry will cope better with the current downturn than expected.

    Total's north sea oil rig

    It comes as some oil and gas companies are cutting staff and investment due to low oil prices and a warning from a senior industry expert that some North Sea projects would not be viable if prices fell below $60 a barrel.

    Prof Gordon Hughes, a former energy adviser at the World Bank, said that the industry is used to dealing with an unpredictable market.

    He said: "The oil price is notoriously volatile, its gone up and down for the past 50 years.

    "We are going through a bad part of the down cycle but most companies have enough money and enough sense to realise that they have to look at the medium or longer term rather than simply where the price is at today."

    07:18: Court on camera

    Victims and witnesses could pre-record video statements rather than giving evidence in court under radical new proposals being considered by the Scottish Court Service (SCS).


    The BBC understands the concept is being actively explored by the judiciary and the SCS.

    The aim is to avoid wasting witnesses' time and speed up trials.

    Legal experts have raised concerns and warned it should not be a substitute for cross-examining witnesses in court.

    07:11: What the papers say

    The Scotsman leads with the Scotland Yard investigation into an alleged paedophile ring involving high profile people and its link to three murders.

    The National says a Westminster civil servant is facing a "referendum 'bias' probe".

    And The Daily Record has the story of a young woman who lost her unborn baby after her partner punched her.


    See the rest of today's front pages here.

    07:05: House prices on the up

    House prices in Scotland will increase by 4% next year, a new report predicts.

    house for sale

    Recent changes to stamp duty legislation are expected to boost the market, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) 2015 housing forecast.

    The report says demand for property continuing to outstrip supply is another reason to expect prices to go up.

    It also predicts a 2.1% increase in rents north of the border.

    07:00: Paul McLaren BBC Scotland News

    Good morning and welcome to Friday's Scotland Live, where we will bring you all the latest news, sport, travel and weather between now and 19:00.



BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.