Longest-serving first minister Salmond will not 'go on and on'


Alex Salmond: "I wake up every morning and look forward to the day ahead."

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SNP leader Alex Salmond said he was proud to be Scotland's longest-serving first minister but he had no intention of going "on and on" in the post.

In interviews with the BBC, the politician added he had no immediate plans to "depart the scene" with the independence referendum due in 2014.

Mr Salmond is Scotland's fourth first minister and to date the only non-Labour politician to take the post.

Donald Dewar, Henry McLeish and Jack McConnell went before him.

Mr Salmond conceded that his darkest days were around the time of the release of the Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset al-Megrahi.

He said his political high point was his election victory in May 2011 when he delivered a historic majority of MSPs to Holyrood.

Mr Salmond told BBC Scotland's Raymond Buchanan: "I wake up every morning and look forward to the day ahead."

Previous first ministers

Donald Dewar, Henry McLeish and Jack McConnell

1. Donald Dewar: First minister from 13 May 1999 to 11 October 2000

2. Henry McLeish: First minister from 26 October 2000 to 8 November 2001

3. Jack McConnell: First minister from 22 November 2001 to 16 May 2007

He insisted he would not go "on and on", but added: "I want to see Scotland win the referendum, I want to see the opening of the door of opportunity in that referendum and I have no immediate plans to depart the scene."

In an earlier interview with BBC Scotland's Good Morning Scotland programme, Mr Salmond said he was proud of his achievements during his 2002 days in the post.

He told presenter Hayley Millar: "I think the most substantial thing that I am proud of, and the administration should be, is the establishment of a social contract between the Scottish government and the people of Scotland in extraordinarily tough times.

"In these difficult times we have managed to both preserve and indeed extend social objectives like the removal of tuition fees, the protection of free care for the elderly, the importance of having a national health service which is free at the point of need to everyone.

"These are big social protections and advances and that is what I would describe as a social contract between the government and the people."

Start Quote

It was Margaret Thatcher who said in a BBC interview in 1987, after winning her third election victory, that she intended to go "on and on". Her colleagues duly precluded that option by preventing her from contesting a fourth election.”

End Quote

Following devolution and the first elections to the new Scottish Parliament, Labour grandee Mr Dewar became the first minister on 13 May 1999.

He held the post until his death in October 2000.

Mr McLeish was Scotland's next first minister, taking on the role from 26 October, 2000, to 8 November, 2001.

By the end of November that year Mr McConnell was in the hot seat. He lasted until May 2007 when the SNP, under the leadership of Mr Salmond, won minority government.

On Wednesday, 7 November, Mr Salmond overtook Mr McConnell's time in the post.

Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon congratulated the SNP leader on reaching the political milestone.

She said: "The people of Scotland overwhelmingly trust the Scottish government headed by Alex Salmond - 71% trust the Scottish government to act in Scotland's interests, up from 51% under the previous Lab/Lib Executive in 2006, and compared to just 18% who trust the UK government.

Alex Salmond: "In these difficult times we have managed to both preserve and indeed extend social objectives."

"In 2011, people in Scotland gave a remarkable vote of confidence in Alex Salmond's leadership and the team, record and vision of the SNP - delivering an overall majority at Holyrood, and becoming the only first minister to win two elections.

"It is this record of success that will help win a yes vote in the referendum for an independent Scotland in autumn 2014."


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  • rate this

    Comment number 316.

    Derek Weir - problem is my English mates have better things to talk about than Scottish Independence . As for returning to Scotland of course I will - your new currency will be so devalued I will be stocking up before I return south.
    The sad fact is I am a proud Scot ( and proud Brit) and I'm just ashamed and embarrassed by the way a large number of Scots moan and whine about being hard done by.

  • rate this

    Comment number 315.

    Like him or loathe him, Alex Salmond is an iconic First Minister who will be remembered long after the referendum has been and gone. Apart from Donald Dewar, the other First Ministers seemed little more than Scottish Office ministers by another name - I doubt anyone down south even remembers them. Salmond has genuinely put a face to the nation within the UK and elsewhere, for good or for bad.

  • rate this

    Comment number 314.

    I love the way this man is not only destroying my country but is doing so with a stupid smug grin on his face. Just great!

  • rate this

    Comment number 313.

    Yup it is a miricle the blundering fool has lasted this long!

    Lets hope when Scotland votes No in 2014 that he will disappear never to be heard of again along with this independance rubbish.

  • rate this

    Comment number 312.

    To charles;

    Don't get me a wrong I am pro the Union! I think we are much stronger united. And unlike many other countries we are a relatively small island and it only makes geographical sense for us to be 1 country.

  • rate this

    Comment number 311.

    Just as Sean Connery is still seen as the best ever Bond, Alex Salmond will be seen as the best First Minister Scotland ever produced when he retires.

    And all this despite the disgraceful smear tactics being adopted by the "Better Together" campaign.

  • rate this

    Comment number 310.

    Once again we witness the ignorance from the 'no we canny's' by letting their dislike of Alex Salmon and the SNP cloud their judgement of what is on offer in 2014. It is an oppertunity that should be grabbed by all Scots who seek a fairer, more prosperous and most importantly a proud country standing on it's own merits.

  • rate this

    Comment number 309.

    Salmond is outstanding politician by any standards. It is not that the opposition parties have no brilliant minds, but that they have all headed south. It is thus by design that by making Scotland the goal, that the SNP has become the most competent political force north of the border. Independence would create new goals for the ambitious and retain Scotland's best without forcing them to leave.

  • Comment number 308.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • rate this

    Comment number 307.


    I disagree with your synopsis for one simple reason.

    When you are the most able person in the room it is not arrogance to accept that fact, its just realistic.

    Salmond and Sturgeon are far and away the best leadership team any political party has in the UK. They would be foolish not to recognise that and "foolish" is one thing very few people say about either of them.

  • rate this

    Comment number 306.

    273 I salute you - you are in a minority sadly

  • rate this

    Comment number 305.

  • rate this

    Comment number 304.

    @ Tony Soprano - "A dangerous man" - come on Tony - what a ridiculous comment. he was democratically elected, and if the people no longer like him, they will vote him out. Please explain to me how having a 2nd chamber full of sleeping old men dressed in ermine ensures democracy?

  • rate this

    Comment number 303.

    Today's HYS is on Alex Salmonds achievement of being the longest standing First Minister in Scotland

    It is not about Scottish independence,English independence or the SNP

    If the BBC would like to reinstate the opening up of political blogs in Scotland perhaps these off topic points can be addresses individually.

    If not then, why not just stick to on-topic & cut out the anti-Scot-indy posts?

  • rate this

    Comment number 302.

    I find all the anti independence bile quite idiotic and the personal attacks on Alex Salmond a disgrace, all brought about by complete ignorance of what is going on

  • rate this

    Comment number 301.

    His friendships certainly do not 'go on and on.'
    He schmoozes then drops people when they become inconvenient, eg Trump, Murdoch. I just hope his Chinese mates know they are probably next

  • rate this

    Comment number 300.

    Politicians are an abhorrent sub-species who will say/do anything to get elected. Truth is a foreign concept to many.

  • rate this

    Comment number 299.

    255 angiF,

    What concept? That only the UK is a country?....really over a thousand years...a thousand...

    Good one angi F...

    Maybe you should read a book...union of crowns? no? Acts of union?

  • rate this

    Comment number 298.

    Like or loathe him he is a good politician who can stand up and take on all comers. Without him scottish politics would be run by lame politicians like Johan Lamont and Willie Rennie...WHO? I hear you ask....exactly!
    But this poses the SNP's biggest problem, I would trust salmond as a leader of an independent Scotland but there is no great succesor to from any party when he does stand down.

  • rate this

    Comment number 297.

    If Salmond seriously wants me to vote for independence, he has to provide me with the facts and figures. I want to know exactly what I'll get out of it (healthcare/education/etc) and what is expected from me in return (taxes/etc) All we're getting is slogans and attempts to stir up patriotism.
    Its one thing to be proud of where you're from, but patriotism can't pay the bills of running a country.


Page 19 of 34


More Scotland politics stories


Scotland Live

    19:00: Goodnight

    That's it from the Scotland Live team for this week. Join us again from 07:00 on Monday for all the latest news, sport, travel and weather from around the country. Have a great weekend.

    18:57: Man wanted over violent crimes

    Police Scotland have released an image of a man they want to trace in relation to a number of serious violent crimes.

    Henry Hanratty Stephen

    A spokesman said they wanted to trace 31-year-old Henry Hanratty Stephen urgently.

    He is known to have links in Aberdeen and north Aberdeenshire.

    He has been described as being white, 5ft 10in tall and of medium build. He has short, brown hair and often has dark stubble.

    Anyone with information should contact police.

    18:51: Jim Spence BBC Sport

    Motherwell FC & the 'Well Society announce that Les Hutchison has completed his takeover of the Club.

    18:44: Tribute to crash victim

    The family of a man who died after his van crashed in Aberdeenshire have paid a poignant tribute to him.

    william paton

    William Paton, 54, was driving his silver Citroen Berlingo when it crashed near Alford on Thursday. No other vehicle was involved.

    The family of Mr Paton, from Westhill, said he was "adored by everyone".

    They added: "He was a renowned practical joker with family and friends. He will be sorely missed by all who knew him including his wee dog Millie."

    18:38: BBC Scotland Weather Latest

    Further wintry showers will affect the Northern and Western Isles, north west Highlands, Argyll, Moray and Aberdeenshire, turning heavier as the night goes on and increasingly falling as snow, with hail and thunder at times too.

    Driving conditions will be hazardous, particularly over higher level roads. North or northwesterly winds will strengthen, reaching gale or severe gale force over the Northern Isles and around exposed northern and western coasts.

    Central and southern Scotland will be largely dry overnight, with just a few showers clipping the Galloway and Berwickshire coasts. Temperatures for most will dip to freezing or a touch below, and as low as -4C across the snow fields in the north.

    The Met Office has a yellow "be aware" warning in force, covering the whole of Scotland, for a risk of ice.

    18:30: On air now...

    Reporting Scotland is getting under way on BBC One. Watch it here.

    Email: newsonlinescotland@bbc.co.uk 18:28: Your pictures - Get involved

    Amanda Hutchison, from Dornock, Dumfriesshire, took this picture of her two cockerels "and little Audrey posing on the end".

    amanda hutchison birds

    Email us your pictures from around the country for our photo gallery and we will use the best.

    18:20: McGinn moves to Dens Jim Spence BBC Sport

    tweets: Stephen McGinn has joined @dundeefconline on loan from Sheffield United until the end of the season.

    18:13: Pizza shovel attack

    A takeaway worker who admitted hitting a customer over the head with a pizza shovel has avoided punishment in court.

    Dalgit Din "snapped" when the ranting female customer refused to leave Arbroath's Spice of Life last December.

    The 64-year-old grabbed the kitchen implement - used to get pizzas in and out of the oven - and struck the woman.

    Admonishing Din at Forfar Sheriff Court, Sheriff Gregor Murray said there had been "distinct provocation from a much younger, much bigger woman".

    18:04: BBC Scotland Travel Latest

    A90 has now been reopened following a collision between a tractor and a car.

    17:58: Edinburgh Evening News

    tweets: Michael Stewart has missed out on selection to stand for the SNP in Edinburgh West

    michael stewart
    17:45: School of fish

    A new initiative will encourage school leavers in Aberdeenshire to consider taking up a job in the fishing industry.

    fishing boat

    The pilot scheme led by the Scottish Fishermen's Federation (SFF) offers young people an introductory and safety course in fishing at sea.

    The three-week course will be held at the Scottish Maritime Academy in Peterhead.

    It will be followed by a two-month work placement on a fishing boat.

    17:34: Mckay heads for Wigan

    Wigan Athletic have signed Leeds defender Jason Pearce and Inverness Caledonian Thistle striker Billy Mckay.

    Billy Mckay has scored 10 goals this season

    Both have agreed "long-term" contracts with the Championship strugglers and have joined for undisclosed fees.

    17:25: Passengers freed after bus crash

    Firefighters had to free passengers after a crash between two buses in Stirling.

    bus crash 2

    The double-decker vehicles collided on Melville Terrace at about 12:30.

    Emergency services including police, the fire service and ambulance crews were called to the scene, and the road was briefly closed due to a fuel spillage on the road.

    No-one was seriously hurt in the crash, although several people were taken to hospital due to minor injuries.

    17:15: Record sales for Burns festival

    Organisers of the Big Burns Supper festival in Dumfries say ticket sales have already doubled compared with last year's event.


    The fourth edition will draw to a close on Saturday with performances by the likes of The Vaselines and Hue and Cry.

    17:05: Body of missing student found

    Police have confirmed that the body of a man found on a beach in St Andrews yesterday afternoon is that of missing student Kieran McCann.

    The 18-year-old St Andrews University student, originally from Los Angeles, had been missing since Tuesday night.

    A post-mortem examination is still to take place, but there are believed to be no suspicious circumstances.

    16:56: Shopping centre killer jailed for life

    A man has been jailed for life for murdering a stranger who tried to stop him hassling two women for a cigarette.

    Springburn Shopping Centre

    John Paul Bird, 30, stabbed 40-year-old John Bulloch at Glasgow's Springburn Shopping Centre on 3 May 2014.

    He denied murder and claimed he could not control his actions at the time due to an "abnormality of mind".

    A jury at the High Court in Glasgow, however, convicted him of murder. Bird was told he would serve a minimum of 18 years in jail.

    16:48: Hendrie signs for Hammers

    Hamilton Accies left-back Stephen Hendrie has signed for West Ham but will stay at New Douglas Park until the end of the season.

    Hamilton full-back Stephen Hendrie

    The Lanarkshire club say they have reached agreement on a fee for the 20-year-old, who was due to be out of contract in the summer.

    Hendrie debuted for Accies aged 16 and has made 97 appearances for the club.

    Last week, Accies vice-chairman Ronnie MacDonald said the move was off and was critical of West Ham's approach.

    16:39: Organised crime gang jailed

    Three men have been jailed after admitting serious organised crime offences in Edinburgh.

    Three men jailed for serious organised crime offences Darren Hendren, Edmond Reid and Jason Forbes were sentenced at the High Court in Edinburgh

    The Organised Crime Counter Terrorism Unit carried out surveillance activity in the Inch and Niddrie areas of the city as part of Operation Harvester between October 2012 and May 2013.

    Almost £10,000 in forged notes was seized, along with a kilo of cannabis and more than half a kilo of heroin.

    The men admitted drugs offences and possessing counterfeit money.

    Jason Forbes was sentenced to 32 months in prison, Darren Hendren was given a 20-month sentence and Edmond Reid was jailed for 36 months.

    16:31: Tractor and car crash shuts road

    A crash involving a tractor and a car has shut a stretch of the A90.

    Police Scotland said the accident, near the Cock and Bull restaurant at Balmedie, has closed both carriageways of the road.

    The emergency services were alerted to the crash at 15:11. Police said the car involved was a Vauxhall Corsa.

    Diversions have been put in place.

    16:25: Tram break-in update David Miller BBC Scotland transport correspondent

    Police Scotland say all of the computer equipment stolen from the offices of the Edinburgh Tram inquiry was "suitably encrypted".

    edinburgh tram
    16:15: Memories of Churchill funeral

    Sir Winston Churchill was buried 50 years ago. Britain's wartime leader had died a week earlier at 90-years-old.

    Harry Nunn

    Prime ministers and presidents from around the world gathered in London for his state funeral.

    Also there, and playing a crucial role, was Dundee man Harry Nunn, a groom at the Royal Mews.

    BBC Scotland's Andrew Anderson has been to meet Mr Nunn to hear his memories of the day. Watch it here.

    Weather warnings BBC Weather Latest

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    15:44: Football clubs 'must involve fans'

    Football clubs must do more to get fans involved in their running, according to an expert group set up to look at the issue.

    The Scottish government working group has revealed proposals aimed at increasing supporter involvement in the sport, but stops short of proposing any changes to the law.

    The group included representatives from the Scottish Football Association (SFA), Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL), Supporters Direct Scotland and Sportscotland.

    Members want an annual award set up to assess how well clubs are engaging with the community.

    15:33: Ms Dynamite tops Eden Festival bill

    The Eden Festival, held at Raehills near Moffat, has unveiled its headline acts for this year's event in June.

    Ms Dynamite

    Australian band The Cat Empire, US hip hop artist Grandmaster Flash and the UK's Ms Dynamite top the bill.

    In total, more than 250 acts will perform across nine different stages between 11 and 14 June.

    Festival director Meredith Langley Vine said: "Every year we go bigger and bolder and this time round it's no different."

    She added: "The line-up this year includes a lot of ne

    15:24: McPake stays with Dundee

    Defender James McPake has agreed a two-year contract extension with Dundee.

    James McPake

    The 30-year-old had been linked with a move to English football but has signed until the end of the 2016/17 season.

    McPake joined Dundee in the summer after leaving Hibernian following the Edinburgh side's relegation.

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    15:06: Fletcher has medical at West Ham

    Manchester United midfielder Darren Fletcher is undergoing a medical at Premier League rivals West Ham as he edges closer to a move to Upton Park.

    Darren Fletcher

    United boss Louis van Gaal had already revealed the Scottish international, 31, was in talks with the Hammers.

    "He is now in West Ham, so we have to wait and see," said Van Gaal on Friday. "He is my third captain so he is an important guy in the dressing room.

    "I like him as a human being and a player, so we will miss him."

    Fletcher has made only five starts under Van Gaal this season.

    14:56: Aircraft in emergency landing

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    Airport sign
    @CalMac_Updates CalMac Service Info

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    14:38: Scotland sprinkled with magic

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    Snowy street
    14:29: Man dies as his van crashes

    A man has died following a one-vehicle crash on the unclassified road between Keig and Montgarrie near Alford on Thursday 29 January.

    The man who died was the driver of a Citroen Berlingo van.

    Officers have appealed for anyone who witnessed the collision or saw the vehicle in the lead up to it to contact them on 101.

    @DavidLawTennis David Law

    BBC Scotland's Kheredine Idessane: 'Novak, do you still have problems with Andy's accent?

    Novak: 'Excuse me?'


    14:10: Break-in at tram inquiry offices

    An investigation is under way following a break-in at the offices of the public inquiry into the construction of the Edinburgh tram project.

    Edinburgh tram

    The robbery took place between yesterday evening and this morning. It is believed that laptop computers were stolen, along with other items.

    A spokesman for the inquiry team confirmed a break-in had taken place but said it would be inappropriate to comment further while police inquiries were continuing.

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    13:50: Police hunt serial flasher

    Police are searching for a serial flasher who repeatedly indecently exposed himself in parks in Crieff.

    MacRosty Park

    Three incidents were reported in MacRosty Park and Taylor Park in the Perthshire town between 20 and 27 January.

    The man is described as being in his late teens, with dark hair. He was wearing a grey hooded top, dark trousers, black pointed shoes and was carrying a blue rucksack.

    Officers have appealed for information.

    @SETrunkRoads Amey SE Trunk Roads

    Temperatures set to drop again tonight with some #snow predicted on higher levels. All our Frontline and Patrols will be out overnight

    13:29: Worker death probe

    A fatal accident inquiry (FAI) is to be held after a worker fell to his death at the Hunterston coal terminal in North Ayrshire.

    Colin Sutherland, 38, from Largs, died in the industrial accident at the Peel Ports facility in November 2013.

    The Crown Office has announced that the FAI will be held at Kilmarnock Sheriff Court in July.

    A preliminary hearing, ahead of the start of the inquiry, has been scheduled for 9 March.

    Email: newsonlinescotland@bbc.co.uk Armed police - Your views

    Dave, Dunnon: I think it is time to look at arming the police. If terrorists attack here as they did in France, do you think they will run away at the sight of a pepper spray? It's not fair to expect the police to fight armed terrorists with sticks.

    13:08: Wind's getting up

    Plans to build a third wind farm near the village of Grantshouse in the Scottish Borders have been unveiled.

    Drone Hill

    Livos Energy wants to locate eight turbines on land at Howpark Farm - about two miles away.

    The site is adjacent to the already operating Drone Hill wind farm and sits to the south of Penmanshiel, which has consent for a new wind farm.

    Livos Energy has submitted a scoping request to Scottish Borders Council for the site between the A1 and A1107.

    Email: newsonlinescotland@bbc.co.uk 12:58: Your pictures - Get involved

    Mark Nesbitt from Comrie, Perthshire, took this picture as he came down Beinn Dubhchraig near Tyndrum.

    Beinn Dubhchraig

    Email us your pictures from around the country for our photo gallery and we will use the best.

    12:51: It's Murray v Djokovic

    Scotland's Andy Murray will face top seed Novak Djokovic in Sunday's Australian Open final.


    The Serb beat defending champion Stan Wawrinka in another dramatic five-set contest at Melbourne Park.

    Djokovic, chasing a fifth Australian Open title, beat Murray - who is in his fourth final - to claim the 2011 and 2013 titles.

    12:42: Wipe the slate clean

    A historic slate arch in Lochaber is to be conserved in a project involving the Heritage Lottery Fund, Highland Council and Historic Scotland.

    Conservation team and slate arch

    Known as the Tom Beag Inclined Plane, it was built in the 19th Century to transport wagons of slate from a quarry at Ballachulish.

    The quarry dates back to the 1600s and in later centuries slate from the site was exported all over the world.

    Work to conserve and interpret the arch is costing £277,000.

    12:34: Man questioned over indecent exposure

    Police say a man is assisting with their inquiries after an eight-year-old girl said a man exposed himself to her in Aberdeen.

    Officers yesterday released CCTV images of a man they wanted to speak to in connection with the incident. It is said to have happened in the Flourmill Lane area of the city at about 08:40 on Monday.

    Tweet @BBCScotlandNews University or jobs - Your views

    Jim: Apprenticeships with day release to College/Uni allow greater understanding due to the mix of theory with the practical.

    Steven: University is a great route for a person to take, but schools present it as the only route to success.

    Stan Le Man: [Schools] don't do nearly enough for kids, UK could learn a lot from the German vocational education model. Well ahead!

    Rossi Hutch: I knew I didn't want to go to university just college but I didn't have enough "work experience". Schools need to do more.

    12:11: Man guilty of nursery rape

    A man has been found guilty of raping a three-year-old boy at a nursery and sexually abusing a girl from when she was 12 to 15-years-old.

    mark maclennan

    Mark Maclennan, 30, was also convicted of possessing and taking indecent images of children at the High Court in Glasgow.

    The boy was raped at a nursery in the Lochaber area and the girl was abused on numerous occasions in Stirling, Dunblane and Dunfermline.

    12:00: London, Tokyo, Zurich...and Hawick

    Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael has highlighted the Borders as a "prime example" of what Scotland has to offer to the rest of the world.

    Alistair Carmichael

    He visited Borders College in Galashiels and Hawick Cashmere.

    Mr Carmichael praised Hawick Cashmere for its efforts to employ apprentices and export around the world with stores in London, Tokyo and Zurich.

    "This company is a leading example of what Scotland has to offer the world," he said.

    11:54: The back pages

    Former Old Firm players give their big match predictions. Dundee United tell Burnley and Celtic they will have to increase their offers - of around £1.5m - substantially if they want to sign midfielder Stuart Armstrong.

    stuart armstrong

    And Hamilton defender Stephen Hendrie has agreed a deal with West Ham. It's all on the back pages of today's papers and you can read our full review here.

    11:46: Missing woman found

    A 75-year-old woman missing from a nursing home in Midlothian has been found.

    Anne Cunningham, who has dementia, was reported missing from the care home in Lasswade at 20:00 yesterday.

    11:44: Robbie Coltrane 'fine' after flight scare

    Actor Robbie Coltrane is "fine" after he was taken to hospital after falling ill on a flight to the US, his agent said.

    Robbie Coltrane

    Belinda Wright said the 64-year-old star, who played Hagrid in the hit films, was in a Florida hospital.

    She said: "The prognosis is that he is going to be fine"

    Email: newsonlinescotland@bbc.co.uk University or jobs - Your views

    David: I would agree that schools need to help those who do not want to go to uni. I went because it was expected of me, not because I wanted to or knew what I wanted to do. I ended up being miserable and left. There are skills I now know I would have benefited from back then that had nothing to do with uni but everything to do with getting a job.

    Kirsty: Glasgow secondary schools do a great deal to cater for all young people through apprenticeships, colleges, vocational training and university. They used to have schemes in place like EVIP, which was a vocational training programme, and there is a 16-plus service to help some young people find the right path for them.

    Caol: From my own personal experience, there is a very definite "splitting" of pupils who want to go to university and those who don't. Teachers love kids who go to university, further education is familiar to them whereas I felt as if my teachers weren't equipped enough to point the others in the right direction.

    11:31: Out-of-hours medical review

    The Scottish government is to carry out a review of the way people access non-urgent medical care out of hours.


    Ten years ago, GPs stopped having to provide care in the evenings, at weekends and during holidays.

    The review will consider how best to provide out-of-hours care considering the growing challenge of an elderly population. Recommendations are expected by the end of the summer.

    11:23: Name the planets Steven McKenzie BBC Scotland Highlands and Islands reporter

    Scottish amateur astronomers hope to name alien planets known as exo worlds.

    Exo planets illustration

    Ayrshire Astronomical Society is one of 17 UK groups competing in the International Astronomical Union's (IAU) NameExoWorlds contest.

    Exo planets orbit distant stars and the IAU wants to find names for 305 which currently carry scientific designations such as GJ 832 b and CoRoT-1b.

    Graham Longbottom, president of Ayrshire Astronomical Society, said the group hoped to offer up names to planets orbiting stars visible from the northern hemisphere with the naked eye, or through binoculars.

    11:17: The Big Debate Gordon Brewer BBC Scotland News

    I'm hosting the Big Debate from the Robert Burns Centre on the banks of the Nith in Dumfries this lunchtime on BBC Radio Scotland.

    I'll be joined by the David Mundell from the Scottish Conservatives, the SNP's Joan McAlpine, Labour's Russell Brown, David Coburn from UKIP, and Lee Medd who's programme controller of the local community radio station.

    The audience will be putting the questions to the panel on the week's big talking points, and you can listen from midday on BBC Radio Scotland.

    11:08: Mortonhall settlement offers

    Families who have been affected by the so-called baby ashes scandal at Mortonhall Crematorium will be offered settlements of up to £4,000 by the City of Edinburgh Council.

    Mortonhall Crematorium

    The local authority has decided on the proposed settlement scheme with solicitors representing families.

    It provides for payments of between £1,000 and £4,000, along with legal expenses.

    Thompsons Solicitors, which represents 129 clients, helped develop the scheme.

    11:04: Aircraft 'dramatic landing' The Scotsman

    A Ryanair jet was forced to make a dramatic landing at Edinburgh airport this morning just minutes into the flight.

    Passengers on the 8.05 to Dublin reported hearing a loud bang seconds after takeoff, before the captain veered sharply off course and piloted the plane back towards the runway - minus a wheel.

    10:55: Brown: The world is watching

    Celtic captain Scott Brown has welcomed the League Cup semi-final meeting with Rangers for bringing the world's attention back to Scottish football.

    Celtic captain Scott Brown and Rangers' El Hadji Diouf

    It is the first derby between the sides for nearly three years, with Rangers now in the Scottish Championship.

    Brown is relishing the prospect of rekindling the Glasgow rivalry on Sunday.

    "It is good for Scottish football because everyone all over the world will be watching and hopefully we can put on a show for them," he said.

    10:43: School for Glasgow 2014 site The Evening Times

    A new primary school is to be built in the heart of the Athletes' Village.

    One of the first pupils when it opens in 2018 could be little James Barrie who visited the site with his mum Margaret and four-year-old sister Maya.

    James, who is six-months-old, lives with his family in Shettleston which will come within the catchment area of the new primary.

    @acciesfc Hamilton Accies

    We have signed 24 year old Italian defender Lucas Tagliapietra from Moldovan club Milsami Orhei. We await international clearance.

    10:25: Scotch on the rocks? Douglas Fraser Business and economy editor, Scotland

    Why export worries are driving the whisky industry to drink.

    Douglas Fraser blogs.

    Armed police - Your views

    Kenny, Motherwell: Police officers are getting younger, most of then already think they are in The Sweeney. I don't think giving such young people lethal weapons is the way to go.

    Pete, Auchtermuchty: What the eye doesn't see the heart does not grieve over. Let them carry concealed firearms.

    Ralph, Paisley: A compromise could be having firearms in a secure compartment in the patrol car to be used if required.

    B. Hunter, Penicuik: Terrorists have stated that they are going to target police officers, it is not fair to leave them defenceless.

    Mike, Dundee: We don't want to see this as an everyday experience, uncomfortable to say the least to citizenship. Encourages disaster!

    10:13: Court closures

    Four sheriff courts in Scotland are to shut their doors today in the final phase of a programme of closures.

    Rothesay, Haddington, Stonehaven and Dingwall Sheriff Courts

    Haddington, Duns, Peebles and Dingwall are among seventeen sheriff and JP courts which have been axed in the last eighteen months to save money.

    The Scottish Courts Service says the closures are final. Campaigners in Haddington are holding a public meeting tonight to try and outline a plan to give their court a future.

    Lights out BBC Scotland Travel Latest

    #glasgow traffic lights are off at DOBBIE'S LOAN / MILTON STREET / CANAL STREET

    Follow Police direction or avoid all together.

    Email: newsonlinescotland@bbc.co.uk University or jobs - Get involved

    How well do schools cater for students who don't want to go to university? An educational charity says they could do a lot more to help students who want to pursue a more vocational career through apprenticeships.

    What do you think? Is too much focus being put on boosting the number of students who go to university rather than helping them find a job they enjoy. Or should we be pushing pupils to go as far in the education system as they can?

    Email us your views to newsonlinescotland@bbc.co.uk text us on 80295 or tweet @bbcscotlandnews

    09:53: Woman with dementia missing

    Police in Midlothian say they are growing increasingly concerned for the welfare of a 75-year-old woman who has been reported missing in Lasswade.

    Anne Cunningham

    Anne Cunningham was last seen at Drummond Grange Nursing Home in Kevock Road, Lasswade last night at about 20:00. She "lives with the advance stages of dementia" according to police.

    Motorway crash BBC Scotland Travel Latest

    #Perth - 1 lane clsd RTC #M90 N/B between J10 (Craigend) and Broxden Roundabout - Lane two (Of two) blocked. A support vehicle is en route

    09:43: Window closes BBC Sport Scotland

    Dundee manager Paul Hartley has admitted that it is proving hard to strengthen his squad as the transfer window draws to a close.

    Paul Hartley

    Hartley is keen to add depth as the Dark Blues chase a top-six Scottish Premiership finish this season.

    Kheredine Idessane BBC Scotland

    .@andy_murray coach @AmeMauresmo says media criticism didnt bother her, and hasnt deflected them from their path

    09:23: Arrest after woman robbed of car

    A man has been arrested after a woman was attacked and robbed of her car in the Leith area of Edinburgh.

    The incident happened at about 11:30 on Wednesday when a man approached the 61-year-old woman in Jane Street and asked for directions. He assaulted her before driving her silver Honda Civic towards Leith Walk.

    Police said a 34-year-old had been charged and was expected to appear at Edinburgh Sheriff Court later today.

    09:16: Business crime fighters Evening Telegraph

    A city business group has pledged to double the number of subscribers to crime-fighting tool DUNCAN.

    That is if Dundee City Council agrees to fund the scheme — which helps traders identify troublemakers — for another year, rather than axe it as part of budget cuts.

    09:10: FBU demands urgent action BBC Radio Scotland

    Roddy Robertson from FBU Scotland tells Good Morning Scotland urgent action is needed after research by Stirling University says firefighters face an unacceptable level of risk. Over the past ten years, fourteen have died in the line of duty.

    Mr Robertson says: "After the 2002/2003 fire dispute we had we lost a number of, as we see it, structures, that bound together the fire service.


    He says: "Things like standards, so breathing apparatus all the type of equipment we use, the type of fire engine we've got, type of equipment we have got on that fire engine.

    "We've seen a gradual but a diversion of type of equipment and training and it's not as joined up as used to be and when you don't have joined up training in an emergency situation, that's when you have problems."

    The Scottish Government says the number of lives lost to fire is the joint lowest in the last ten years and ministers will consider the findings of the report.

    09:07: Apprenticeships: 'Very clear focus' BBC Radio Scotland

    Fair Work, Skills and Training Secretary Roseanna Cunningham tells Good Morning Scotland the Scottish government has a "very clear focus" on vocational education and is delivering "a very high number of modern apprenticeships year on year".

    Her comments came after an educational charity, the National Centre for Excellence, said half the people it surveyed here had said there weren't enough opportunities to do apprenticeships.

    Apprentice at work

    Ms Cunningham says 25,000 opportunities each year is the current target, with 13,000 achieved after the second quarter.

    She continues: "There needs to be a clear partnership between schools colleges and local employers. Each of those three parts of the system are extremely important, and they need to work together."

    We need to make sure opportunities are available across the wide spectrum not just university, she adds, although there are modern apprenticeships delivered at universities as well so its "not a case of either or".

    #scotsnow #scotlandlive 09:05: Your Snow Pictures

    Devin Scobie sent this image of a snowy Balerno street this morning.

    snow in Balerno

    How does it look where you are?

    Email: newsonlinescotland@bbc.co.uk or tweet us using #Scotlandlive

    @bbcbigdebate The Big Debate

    We're on the banks of the River Nith today for today's debate in snowy #Dumfries. Tune in at 12:00 on @BBCRadioScot

    River Nith
    08:53: Armed police Morning Call BBC Radio Scotland

    Police Scotland has been criticised for the way it brought in its controversial policy allowing some armed officers to carry out routine duties.

    Are you concerned? Or is it a good thing to have officers ready to respond to the most serious incidents quickly?

    Call Kay on 0500 92 95 00.

    Text: 80295.

    email: morningcallscotland@bbc.co.uk or use http://www.facebook.com/bbcradioscotland or twitter @bbcradioscot.

    08:45: Camp spirit BBC Sport Scotland

    Amelie Mauresmo praised the spirit in the Andy Murray camp after his dramatic win over Tomas Berdych at the Australian Open.

    Amelie Mauresmo

    Murray, seeded sixth, recovered from losing a tense first set to win in four and reach his eighth Grand Slam final.

    @trafficscotland Traffic Scotland

    #A85 just South of Dunbeg is *closed* due a RTC. Police are on scene & we will update asap. #BeAware & avoid the area if you can. #StaySafe

    08:35: Brown secures devolution debate

    The former Labour prime minister Gordon Brown has secured a further debate at Westminster on the promise of further powers for Scotland.

    Gordon Brown

    He is widely credited for helping to secure as part of the so-called "Vow" during the referendum.

    The MP for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath will also use the occasion, next week, to condemn Conservative plans for English votes for English laws.

    @trafficscotland Traffic Scotland

    #A9 Drumochter is partially blocked in both directions due to RTC with van. Traffic is busy but getting by & police are on the scene.

    08:24: Marine protection fears

    Coastal communities around Scotland will be hit the hardest, if the Scottish government fails to manage Marine Protected Areas properly - according to a coalition of environment charities.

    Flame shells

    They've criticised government plans as too cautious, protecting only small patches of the seabed. Ministers says the conservation areas will help to enhance the marine environment. A public consultation is due to close on Monday.

    08:17: Daily Record

    Old Firm wifebeaters are set to receive a police visit in a bid to stamp out violence sparked by Glasgow derby.

    Domestic violence

    Extra officers have been drafted in to target known offenders during Sunday's Old Firm match and the other semi-final between Aberdeen And Dundee United tomorrow.

    BBC Scotland Travel Latest

    #FortAugustus #A82 RTC between Canal Side (Fort Augustus) and A887 (Invermoriston).

    Bout 1 1/2 miles N of Fort Augustus.

    08:06: BBC Scotland Weather Latest

    A cold, icy start in places with frost away from the coast. A chilly day ahead with a good amount of dry and sunny weather for the Central Lowlands, east coast and south.

    For the Highlands, Northern Grampian and the Isles, frequent showers through the day. These are of rain or sleet to low levels, and of snow on high ground and high road routes. Winds remains strong in the north from a northerly direction.

    Highs this afternoon around 5 or 6 C - colder where there is snow on the ground.

    07:59: Continental market suspended

    A continental market's licence to trade in Stranraer has been suspended.


    The decision was made after a number of the market's traders set up in the town last July without booking in advance.

    Their position in Castle Square meant an event organised by Stranraer Music Town had to be cancelled.

    07:53: End of poll tax debts approved in principle

    Plans to end the collection of poll tax debts in Scotland have been approved in principle by the Scottish Parliament.

    Poll tax

    The community charge debt bill was passed by 96 votes to 14, although it still faces two further stages of scrutiny before becoming law. Some councils are opposed to the legislation.

    07:41: Scotland's papers

    Andy Murray's fiancée Kim Sears features on many of the front pages as he secured his place in the Australian Open final. What the papers say.

    07:34: More snow falls overnight

    Eddie Ross, BEAR Scotland's North West Operating Company Representative, says: ''The North West and North East Trunk Roads have experienced intermittent snow showers throughout the night on most routes.

    A835 at Altguish near Garve in Highlands

    "Our winter teams have worked throughout the night and the Trunk Roads in North West and North East are clear and currently have no issues.

    ''We will continue to monitor weather conditions and patrol and treat routes as necessary throughout this period of winter weather. We encourage motorists to check travel updates before setting out, prepare for their journeys and drive with care as these wintery conditions are set to continue into next week."

    newsonlinescotland@bbc.co.uk 07:27: Your Pictures

    Neil Cameron sent this image of a sunset on Loch Linnhe taken from Camusnagaul ferry.

    Sunset on Loch Linnhe

    Email your pictures to newsonlinescotland@bbc.co.uk

    You can also tell us what you think of the week's pictures on the BBC Scotland News facebook page.

    07:18: BBC Scotland Travel Latest

    Roads: A77 Girvan road is described as "just passable" because of snow between Girvan and Stranraer; the road was closed from 9 last night till just after midnight.

    A risk of ice wherever there's been a bit of thaw, especially on side roads.

    Trains: No reported problems

    Ferries: Cal Mac- No sailings to and from Lewis-(Ullapool -Stornoway). Tomorrow's sailings are on amber alert.

    Northlink- Possible disruption between Aberdeen and Lerwick.

    07:10: Firefighter deaths 'should have been prevented'

    The deaths of some firefighters in the UK since 2004 "could and should have been prevented", a report has said.

    Building on fire

    The report - commissioned by the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) - looked into 14 deaths of firefighters in the last 10 years and warned "good practice" had sometimes been ignored.

    Research was carried out at the University of Stirling.

    07:04: More snow and ice forecast

    The Met Office has issued yellow "be aware" warnings for snow and ice across Scotland this morning.

    Snowy composite

    The warnings will also remain in place for northern and western regions of the country for Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

    Showers of sleet and hail are also expected, with between 1-3cm of further snow at lower levels.

    The A77 Girvan to Stranraer road was described as "just passable" due to snow.

    07:00: Good morning Sandy Murray BBC Scotland news

    Hullo and welcome to Scotland Live on Friday.

    If you are driving anywhere this morning, leave enough time to clear your car windows. Like I should have done.

    Throughout the day, we will keep you up to date with the latest weather, travel, news and sport.



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