I have no idea how the cinemas choose what they show and in which size of cinema room. One presumes it has something to do with film budget and distributors enticement, not to mention ability to put bums on seats and intake in ticket money and over priced eats and drinks. Therefore I was puzzled at so many cinemas initially refusing to show it. If we want to see small interest films like ‘Wind that shakes the barley’ or ‘Black 47’, we tend to take a trip into the Belmont cinema in Aberdeen. They do lots of films the bigger companies don’t touch. Nowhere thisRead More →

I was a week late in submitting this article due to a culmination of events over the course of a week that had left me rather time short so Stephen was kind enough to swap weeks with me. It started with Wick Harbour Day which is the main fundraising source of income for Wick RNLI. My job is to man the ice cream stall – hectic in a heatwave but still busy in a downpour as children always want ice cream regardless of the weather! This year it was misty; as I left my house on the north eastern edge of Wick Bay to walkRead More →

A little while ago in a post on this blog, I recalled the words of the late, great Margaret Ewing that she knew when “Scotland would win Independence when the people started to march for it”. The recent march in Galashiels however suggests to me that we may well now know when the forces of Unionism also know when Scotland will win Independence; when they resort to unthinking violence. Whoever the numpty or numpties were who decided that spreading screws and nails across the road on the route of the YES bikers has demonstrated that they are rapidly running out of arguments and we areRead More →

At the weekend we went along to Inverness to attend an event discussing Nuclear weapons. The three speakers were Bill Ramsay from Scottish CND, local MP Drew Hendry and the Green MSP John Finnie. There was a good crowd in attendance but sadly the age group was definitely of the older generation. There were a few under retirement age but not as many as there should be. The debate was around two of the CND publications Disarming Trident and The treaty on the prohibition of nuclear weapons (both can be purchased by clicking on the links for £1 each). Bill talked through the process forRead More →

Well the dust is settling on the European elections and after effect for all parties is rippling through them. The new no-members, no-policies Brexit Party has failed to take a parliamentary by-election in a seat they romped home at European level, which suggests voters are clear that Farage is great for a protest vote but no one wants him or his party in Westminster. Labour’s humbling in Scotland to an all-time low in share of the vote has at least forced out arch-Brexiteer/Unionist Neil Findlay, and made his boss do a U-turn to support a second EU referendum and to Remain. A long realisation thatRead More →

       As I completed last month’s Flag I said something like there are going to be European Elections, I’ll have to get out my SNP poster – and lo, it came to pass. The SNP decisively won the European Election, and took 3 of Scotland’s 6 seats, our best ever performance;  I am very pleased to see Christian Allard, who had been an MSP but got squeezed out in a gender balanced selection, to my recollection. I was also more than pleased at the election of Aileen MacLeod. I first met her at a General Election in Ochils Constituency in 1999, I think, Annabelle EwingRead More →

And so it begins again! That mad dance of mutual destruction which lies deep in the festering heart of the Conservative body politic. For all of my adult life the tories have been tearing each other apart over the issue of Europe. From MacMillan, through Heath, Thatcher, Major, Cameron and now May. Each has faced the dilemma of knowing that Britain has lost its empire but not the allusion to still “rule the waves”. The latest episode of this seemingly never ending saga is about to begin with the civil war which to elect of Theresa May’s successor. Over the decades the right of BritishRead More →

In one of my earlier blog pieces I wrote about the offshore wind farm being built south of Wick. At the time of writing the first turbine had been installed and immediately connected to the grid thereby paying for itself from the very first turn of the blades, transmitting energy throughout the country. The same weekend, the first “Dounreay” flight departed with its load of uranium and nuclear waste bound for the USA and flew over the windmill; an emotive vista of the departure of outdated technology whilst the new clean renewable energy sprung up around it. To me it also contrasted the backward lookingRead More →

Around 50% of traffic has shifted from Aberdeen city onto the new Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route since it fully opened in February – easing congestion and improving air quality in the north east. Initial monitoring by Transport Scotland also found key journey times have been reduced by half, even during rush hour, through the 36-mile AWPR route between Stonehaven and south of Ellon. In a speech to north-east business leaders First Minister Nicola Sturgeon highlighted the economic benefits of the £745 million project. She said: “The AWPR has brought huge benefits to the north-east with these initial findings showing both journey times and congestion haveRead More →

This year people have been subjected to many smaller community services being withdrawn from their Council budget. This ranges from libraries and town halls to weeding and grass cutting. After the initial outrage things have settled down. Some people just ignore that these things are no longer done. Others have been more pro-active. Earlier this year our Community Council held a meeting and invited all local groups along to network and discuss ways forward for the local community. A couple of our craft group committee managed to attend and their feedback was positive. Top of the list was their surprise at how many groups areRead More →