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weecounty Alloa & Hillfoots


Friday 20.1.12 Issue 859

In this issue...

George’s Carpets


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Dollar pupil nominated as top Scottish athlete

3,000 mile charity bike trip for John

Page 3

Page 10

Two cut free from wreck

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Wreck of a car after collision in Clarement on Tuesday morning

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wo people had to be cut free from a car after a serious smash in Alloa. Fire crews rushed to the scene in Claremont on Tuesday (January 17) morning to rescue two people from a crash involving two saloon cars.

At 8.22am fire crews had to use hydraulic cutting gear to rescue the casualties who were then taken to Forth Valley Hospital by ambulance for further treatment and monitoring. The road was closed as the debris was dealt with but was cleared and re-opened after an hour.

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Friday 20.1.12

In your


this week

Letters P2 Services P12 Looking for a plumber, builder, roofer in your area, check out what the weecounty services has to offer

District News


What’s on in your Wee County



Puzzles with crossword compeition, pet of the fortnight and those dodgy parking pics!

Recruitment P20-21 Business P22 Lifestyle P23 How to have a better 2012

Motoring P25 Fixing your beloved car, or flogging your old run around, have a read at the weecounty motoring for some tips and hints

weecounty Sport P26-32

weecounty Contacts NEW ADDRESS: 38 Primrose Street, Alloa FK10 1JG

Pop in and see us at our new office!

Advertising & Bookings 01259 404006

Editorial & Production 01259 404006

weecounty LETTERS Dear weecounty, David Erskine (letters 13 January) should check his facts. He is indeed correct that the change in administration was down to two councillors changing their vote, but he has the wrong two. If he checks the record he will note that there were 3 abstentions in 2007 when the minority Labour administration was formed. There were 2 abstentions in 2012 when the SNP took over. The change in administration was only made possible because the two Independent councillors voted with the SNP. If both had abstained then the administration would not have changed because the votes would have been split down the middle. As a Liberal Democrat I do not ally myself with any other party so my allegiance has not changed. Yours sincerely, Councillor John Shier Biggam (Clackmannanshire North) Dear weecounty, May I respond through your paper following the reports on the new SNP Administration. Councillor Carrick has a lot to answer to. The Labour Group had nothing to do with him being de-selected by his local branch. Would it be more of the fact that he was passed over for the Labour Leaders position that he voted for the SNP? If so, it was sour grapes on his part whether he likes it or not. For the years Eddie has been involved in politics he is well aware how the re-selection system works – you win or lose. What shocked many people was the selection of provost and depute by the SNP. This appeared to many people the lack of professionalism which would turn out to be an embarrassment for this council. Councillor Womersley says he has a long term strategy for Clackmannanshire and the SNP administration represents the best option to safeguard the interest of all residents in the community. Where have we heard that before, we only have to look back at their track record whenever they have been in office which was not very often thank God. I only hope the voters of this county use their common sense and remove them from office come the council elections in May before any long term damage is done. I would like to give credit to councillor Derek Stewart for the incredible work that he has done over the past nine years in his role as provost. He has dedicated his life in working so hard for this county and earned himself a lot of respect all over the county, and outwith the county. If I can come to Councillor Stewarts reflections on his nine years I have to disagree with him with many others over his assessment of the new provost, councillor Murphy, that she has always been a good ambassador for Clackmannanshire council. Sorry Derek you are well off the mark. She is well short of that assessment having only served as a councillor for seven years and half of the period was in opposition, still a junior and a lot to learn. Let’s make it clear this is a very important role in any council, watch this space. Yours sincerely, Alex Scobbie, Tullibody

Dear weecounty, I believe in democracy so I will not grumble about the democratic vote of no confidence in the Labour councillors. I have read with interest the letters complaining how unjust the decision to de-select councillor Carrick was, and knew it would not be long before the true colours of Mr Carrick would come to the fore. Once again when things did not go the way he wanted, Mr Carrick not only threatened to join forces with the party he so strongly opposed but did so in every vote. Mr Carrick held talks with the SNP when he was unhappy not to be elected as Leader of the Labour Group in 2007 (a fact that would not have gone unnoticed when the recent selection process took place). I wonder what role the ex-Labour councillor - who was to the fore in the administration now deposed with the vote of no confidence – will have in the new administration. I would imagine, like myself, the local Labour Party members in Tullibody want a councillor who will not spit the dummy out when things do not go their way and threaten to break ranks and join forces with the party the councillor has so publicly decried in the past. Finally as mentioned earlier I have been reading your letters page and one of the letters in support for Mr Carrick from a Mr Drummond of Tillicoultry was quite laughable. Mr Drummond was handing out


leaflets last year telling people to, at the first possible opportunity to vote out all elected Labour representatives and when the members of the Tullibody Labour Party carried out his wishes he criticised them. He also made reference to the fact that the new candidate selected in place of Mr Carrick was not from Tullibody, does he not realise that Mr Carrick is from Sauchie? A. Scott Dear weecounty, I think everyone knows that the recent actions of the SNP in Clackmannanshire are political opportunism of the worst kind. The SNP seized on the disillusionment of a Labour councillor who has for many years courted the favour of the Nationalists and done everything in his power to undermine his Labour colleagues. The Labour Party won the last council election with a mandate to run the council for the full term. It’s not right that the actions of Eddie Carrick should change the democratic will of the people of Clackmannanshire. Eddie Carrick has and will do anything to get his name in the paper and whether he likes it or not, he was voted out by his local branch in clear cut democratic process. The fact that he could only secure one vote from a room of Labour supporters tells its own story about his commitment to the Labour Party and his constituents. To top it all off Mr Carrick could have respected the democratic process but instead he chose to take his ball and play with the other kids - how pathetic! The local branch of the Labour Party (made up Mr Carrick’s own constituents) should be congratulated for getting rid of dead wood like Mr Carrick and selecting a candidate who deserves the respect the people rather than those candidates such as Mr Carrick who don’t lift a finger for their constituents yet feel a sense of entitlement to represent them. I hope Mr Carrick does stand as an independent so that his constituents get the opportunity to decide. H. Morrison, Alloa Dear weecounty, On Thursday 26th January, Sauchie Community Group will celebrate its twentieth anniversary on this evening at a gathering in Sauchie Resource Centre at 7.10pm we will unveil the names of all those who have attended over the years, there will also be a slide show with photographs from the group archives, we will also have a birthday cake and refreshments. Over the twenty years there have been lots of positive achievements from the environmental improvements, to events such as the armistice service and a myriad of social events at various times over the years from the youth discos, Sauchie Fun Days, to the big band events, Sauchie Tiny Tot’s the Art Club etc, some events and activities are no longer around while others carry on today. A main part of the Group was and is working with the local councillors and police and other organisations and individuals to do our best to promote Sauchie and try and gain any benefits to our community that we could. Things were and are not always easy there are issues that we failed on and those that we are still trying to improve an obvious example is Main Street, we would like to see and are still trying to have this street upgraded and made more attractive for those who live there but also to encourage more locals to shop there and support their local businesses. In an opinion the biggest achievement was the volume of people who came along to the monthly Group meetings over the years proving that the people of Sauchie do care about their community and do want to have their say on what is wrong and what should be done to make things better. It isn’t always easy trying to accommodate all opinions and suggestions, some things were fixed right away others took longer and sadly some are still being pursued. Whether people came along for a single issue or a lot of issues or were just interested in their community, all have left their mark from the quiet shy ones to the larger than life characters, sadly over the years some have passed away, their energy and enthusiasm is much missed but we will not forget them or their contribution. The biggest advantage of the Community Group format is that anyone coming along to one of our monthly meeting is able to speak and vote on issues of concern to them, the meetings are open to all locals. It is important to point out that the Community Group is only one part of the social life of Sauchie, there are many other organisations working very hard with loyal volunteers to do their bit, collectively it all adds up to a vibrant community which we should be proud of, But it does not end here, because no matter how much we achieve there will always be other things that need to be done. I therefore urge all local people of various ages to find out more about what is going on locally and back up volunteers and the organisations and play your pat in Sauchies future, the more people who become active the more alive the community becomes. It’s your community and your future, help be a part of it, Shape it and make it better. Keith Turner Publicity Officer

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Friday 20.1.12

‘The Hoff’ receives award for bravery


Alloa Academy raise £569 for Eilidh Brown

By Michelle Henderson


he police HQ in Stirling held their annual award ceremony yesterday rewarding over 60 people with awards for their efforts over the past year. The ceremony saw police officers and members of the public recieving awards for the work they have done in their local area. A local Alloa Fisherman, William McBrien, 30 (nicknamed the Hoff) was amoungst the award winners and recieved the Royal Humane Society Award. This award was given to him for the bravery he showed in saving a mans life. The event took place in June last year at Alloa Docks, where William had been out for a walk before going to a party. When he noticed the police trying to get a man out of the water, William dragged a tied up boat into the tough water and saved the man’s life. William managed to drag him to safety, where the man was able to get medical help. William said he felt very honoured to recieve this award and it was nice to be noticed for his actions. His Granfather, William McBrien was given the same award for the same circumstance almost 50 years to the day. His family are all very proud of him. Chief Constable Derek Penman commented on Mr McBrien’s actions


ilidh Brown died of cancer aged 15 last year and a memorial fund was set up by her aunt, ‘Bad Girls’ and ‘Wire in the Blood’ actress Simone Lahbib. The family are hoping to raise enough money to build a home in the Stirling area that can be used for respite by young cancer sufferers and their families. Eilidh’s dad Gordon Brown (38), also an actor known for roles in “Take the High Road” and “Still

saying, “It is clear that without the intervention of Mr McBrien this man would have drowned. He put his own safety aside and is to be commended for his bravery, quick thinking and positive actions. He took a small rowing boat into a wide, fast-flowing river in order to save the person. The man he was trying to save was being extremely uncooperative and could easily have caused the boat to capsize placing both men in danger.” Constable Donna McVitie from Alloa was also awarded with the Federation Cup for Effort. Many Congratulations to both winners.

Game” attended at Alloa Academy on Friday, 11th November where he was presented with a cheque for £ 569 by Interact Club President Sanna Rehman. Gordon sincerely thanked Alloa Academy Interact Club for their kind donation which was raised by Club members participating in the Rotary Club of Alloa’s Charity Hill Walk in June 2011. More information on this charity can be found on

Dollar pupil nominated as top Scottish athlete By Alison Mann


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ollar Academy pupil Kathryn Gillespie has been nominated by UK athletics as a candidate for the annual Daily Record Scottish Young Athlete of the Year. The FIV runner, who has been shortlisted along with 11 other young athletes from across Scotland, specialises in the 800m and 1500m, and is one of the youngest nominees for this year’s competition. This year, Kathryn has taken the 1500m title at the Scottish National U16 Championships, the 1500m and the 800m titles at the Scottish Schools Championships. She is hoping to be selected for the UK school games, due to be held in the new Olympic stadium in May. Her success was not confined to solely Scottish competition, she also finished third in the English Championships 800m in 2:10.66, which was the third

best ever by an under 15 Scot and her best performance to date. Mrs Christine Galloway, PE teacher at Dollar Academy, commented: “Kathryn is the

most modest young lady who has put in an incredible amount of hard work and determination to reach her goals. Kathryn has the backing of the entire school and we are

all immensely proud of her achievements” Voting for the Scottish Young Athlete of the Year finishes on 23rd January. www.

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Friday 20.1.12

Creative approach to writing By Alison Mann


spiring writers in Clackmannanshire could be given a boost after a local woman decided to start her own writing classes. Laura Fyfe, 31 set up her business Figment Creativity and held her first writing class this week. Laura, a former Alva Academy pupil and teacher in Falkirk, has always had a flare for writing but felt there was a lack of classes to nurture talent in the local area. Laura said: “I’ve always been interested in creative writing myself but couldn’t find any classes in the area. My friend was also looking and had to go to Glasgow for

classes. “I thought, I’m an English teacher, I teach children creative writing in school, I’ve been to classes before and there’s definitely a gap in the market for people interested in writing.” The classes, held in Stirling and Bridge of Allan, will take an organic approach, working with the needs of participants. Laura added: “What I’ve found from my own experience is a lot of people are interested in writing but can’t think of subjects to write about or don’t have the confidence or time to push themselves. “When I started going to classes I found my writing was improving and getting constant feedback from the

tutor and class members gave me a lot of confidence. “That’s what I hope to give people who come to the class.” The class number is limited to ten people per class, meaning each participant will get a level of personal support. Writers will also receive feedback on their work. To find out more visit www.

Read Laura’s business column on page 11

Council Gives Opportunity To Local Pupils By Michelle Henderson


lackmannanshire Council are giving Secondary School Pupils an opportunity this summer to take part in their Foreign Exchange Programme. The scheme has been running for five years now, and is set to run again this summer for its six consecutive year. Youngsters aged between 12 and 17 are being given the chance to go and stay with a person of their own age group, and their family for eight days either in

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Vendargues, near Montpellier in the south of France or Espartinas, close to Seville in southern Spain. These trips are taking place between the 3rd and the 19th July. Previous Exchanges have been very popular with the pupils who have taken part, as there has been a lot of positive feedback. One student from previous years who went to Vendargues said, “It was brilliant. Vendargues is really lovely, the families were really nice and I made a lot of new friends. I would go back in a flash. We found ways to communicate even with just a few words, and it was a great experience!!” Councillor Eddie Carrick, Sustainability portfolio holder also commented saying, “As well as experiencing everyday life in either of these two countries and improving their knowledge and foreign language skills, taking part in these youth exchanges allows the young people to learn about different cultures and customs. It can also build their confidence. I hope our pupils will see what a tremendous opportunity this is for them.” In the first part of the French Exchange we will see 12 students from the Clackmannashire area travel to Vendargues and spend eight nights with their family. This will take place between the 3rd and the 11th of July. The second part of the exchange entails the student bringing their French pupil back to Clackmannanshire with them and playing host to them in their home for eight days also. This will happen in between the dates of the 11th and the 19th July. This is the same plan for the 12

pupils traveling to Espartinas in Spain. Both groups leaving from Clackmannanshire will be accompanied by experienced Council employees and as will pupils coming from Vendargues and Espartinas. During the Exchange the pupils will be expected to take part in planned activities that have been put together for them, allowing both pupils to get to know the other. French and Spanish skills are not essential but would help the two pupils communicate a little easier. The cost of the Exchange is being payed for by Clackmannanshire Council but a contribution fee of £250 towards the overall cost of the pupils trip is essential.

There are only a total of 24 places up for grabs with 12 going to each destination. A leaflet giving more details about how to get involved in this summers Exchange Programme has been distributed to Alloa

Academy, Alva Academy and Lornshill Academy and are also available on Clacksweb. Anyone interested should complete an Expression of Interest Form and return it by the 3rd February 2012.

Annual Burns Night To Be Held at the Macrobert By Michelle Henderson


his years Burns Night is being held at the Macrobert Centre in Stirling on 25th January. There will be live music from the Alistair McCulloch Trio, a well known folk group who are now touring for their twelfth year. The group features Alistair McCulloch, a well known fiddler in Scotland, Marc Duff, 2005 Instrumentalist of the year winner and former Capercaillie member and Aaron Jones, an Old Blind Dogs member. The group are known best for their modern day compositions and their traditional songs. The concert is set to take place in the foyer and is set to start at 7.30pm. There will be two 45 minute sets and food will be available in the restaurant and cafebar from a special Burns Night Menu.

The menu includes traditional scottish delicasies such as Abroath Smokie Pate, Haggis, Neeps and Tatties, Salmon en Croute and desserts like, Cranachan, Apple and Plum Crumble and Cheese and Biscuits. These are available from 5.00pm 7.45pm with Stovies available from 8.00pm. There will also be a whisky tasting which is being offered by Woodwinters from their specially selected own label range. To book a table you should call 01786 466610 and to book tickets you should call 01786 466666. More information can be found at or


Friday 20.1.12

Helping hand for palliative care


KFC coming to town?


new health zone on NHS Inform has been developed by a team led by NHS Forth Valley. It aims to provide information for people with palliative care needs and is available at the click of a mouse. Information includes symptom management, practical advice, advanced care planning and who to turn to for support throughout death and bereavement. The project has taken two years to complete and much of the information has been adapted from MacMillan fact sheets, palliative care clinicians and a national working group. Mark Hazelwood, Director of the Scottish Partnership for Palliative Care said: “Many tens of thousands of people in Scotland live with advanced or life threatening illness. Even more people are supporting a friend, colleague or family member who is affected. The

Palliative Care Zone is for all these people. It will help them get all the information which they need, whether that information is about managing symptoms, arranging a holiday or planning ahead to cope with possible further deterioration in their condition. NHS Forth Valley Project Manager Maggie Mackinnon added: “This is the first time that we have been able to develop patient information for palliative care across Scotland. The format is very easy for people

to understand which is crucial at what is often an extremely distressing and difficult time. Palliative care is about getting the best out of life, even where cure may not be possible. In addition to providing a wealth of information the zone also contains signposting to other resources. The site will be maintained and kept up to date by the Scottish Partnership for Palliative Care and the NHS Inform team at NHS 24. For more information log on to: http://www.nhsinform.

Site for the proposed KFC drive-thru. By Alison Mann


lloa could benefit from 40 new jobs if a planning application is accepted to build a new KFC restaurant in the town. The multi-national company are set to submit a planning application to Clackmannanshire Council to build a drive-thru on Clackmannan Road. The plan would situate the new restaurant in empty land near the Alloa Athletic stadium which

Work continues at Alva pool By Alison Mann


chil Leisure Enterprises (OLE) is working towards opening the Alva Pool and have thanked everyone who has expressed interest so far. OLE are looking forward to developing the opportunities for partnership working that have previously been initiated with Clackmannanshire Council. A spokesman said: “We plan to formalise our relationship with the council to manage the communication between us and to ensure that we work together in ‘creating jobs and wealth – improving health’ for the communities of Clackmannanshire. “We would like to thank everyone that has applied to use the pool complex. “ OLE are still accepting applications from groups and individuals. The applications are noncommittal as the group are interested in hearing from people with a proposal to use the pool, games hall or cafe in order to develop a programme of use. The Management Committee, which was set up after Clackmannanshire council agreed to transfer the asset, meet on a weekly basis to manage the process of the transfer. The committee is also applying for capital and revenue funding, planning employment and volunteering activities and organising the longer term refurbishment of the complex. OLE members will be meeting on February 7 from 7pm at the No 5 Pub, Brook Street, Alva. Nonmembers are welcome to attend, to sign up and become a member. The group are discussing repairing and improving

the building, a spokesman added: “We have been meeting vendors to discuss repairing and improving the fabric of the building and the plant. “Vendors have submitted proposals, with pricing, for the various tasks involved. An early priority will be the upgrading of the changing facilities. This is in response to the strongly expressed views that were noted from the community survey conducted by OLE during the autumn. “As well as working with council officials, we have been meeting with education services on their prospective use of the pool complex. This has included contact with Primary and Secondary Schools and the Further Education College.” The Clackmannanshire community is encouraged to get involved with OLE and this can be done by visiting the OLE website www. or by telephoning 07874889938.

has already had planning permission granted for a hotel, restaurant and carpark to be formed. Land owner Mike Mulraney welcomed the news, he said: “If it goes ahead, which we are very hopeful of, it will be great news for Alloa. “It is a multinational company which would be providing a service in Alloa we don’t currently have. “It means 40 people getting a job in Alloa so it’s a win win

situation. “For us it ticks all the boxes and I hope KFC commit to the town.” KFC said in a statement: “We can confirm that we have applied for permission to open a drive-thru restaurant in Alloa but it’s very early days so we can’t say too much at the moment. A drive-thru restaurant would create around 40 new jobs so we hope to have some good news for our fans in the area soon.”



Friday 20.1.12

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fter 40 years in the business John Glass is retiring and putting his bike shop up for sale. Mr Glass will retire in April and the business is on offer for around £10,000. The lease of the Mar Street property is also available. Glass and Steele has been an important part of Alloa for many years, providing many locals with bikes and helping people get back on the road with reliable repairs. In the mean time Mr Glass is still providing quality bikes and repair service. He sells bikes made by Avocet Sports which range from standard cycles to more technical models priced around £2,000 and everything in between. The shop also stocks many bike accessories and offers a speedy and efficient repair service to bicycles.


omeslide Door Systems have an excellent reputation across Clackmannanshire for their relaxed attitude and dedication to getting the cheapest price for their customers. The company offer a wide range of services including fully fitted bedrooms, wardrobes, kitchens, offices, room dividers and bi-fold doors. These are all provided with a friendly service and the promise that the customer will pay just a £50 deposit and not a penny more until they are happy with the completed result. The experienced owners take a relaxed approach to sales and do not hire sales staff so there is always a relaxed atmosphere in store. With over 48 years in the trade Homeslide Door Systems are definitely the company to call if you are looking to get your home in order and give it a new year’s re-vamp.

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The Blair Stable Grazer allows horses to graze, and feeding from this position allows the horse to relax their limbs and alleviate back and neck problems while aiding clear sinuses. The new feeder comes ready to fit with either wooden or steel posts and bolts to secure it. All customers’ need is a 6mm drill and it can be fitted in ten minutes. The wooden version costs £49.99 and the alloy version £59.99.

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ith the New Year well and truly started now is the time to get your home looking ship shape and fix those nagging issues you may have. Whether it be Artex you hate, a room needing a fresh lick of paint or the outside of your home needing a complete re-vamp, you want to get the best work carried out by a friendly company offering competitive rates. Look no further than N&G Plastering who offer excellent services in Artexing back to smooth, plastering, tiling and internal and external painting. The quality work is provided alongside a friendly, personal service which will leave you wanting to tell your family and friends all about it. The company provide all work at very competitive rates and offer quality assured free estimates. With 40 years experience in the trade, you will surely be delighted when you choose N&G Plastering to help your home look perfect.


ee County residents have been relying on Glendale Security Systems to protect their homes and businesses for 21 years. The company specialise in fitting a wide range of security systems at a price to suit any pocket. When buying an alarm from Glendale Security Systems you will be given expert advice on which package to choose. These can include safety a link up system so you can then rest at night knowing your alarm is linked up to a central station which notifies the police in the event of a break in. Glendale will service the equipment twice yearly and provide parts and maintenance for the lifetime of the product, providing it has not been tampered with by the customer. The company have been members of SSAIB for over ten years and have expanded in that time to provide CCTV, fire alarms, door entry systems, access control and electric gates and barriers. They also work with builders to fit alarms to housing estates. Ensure your home is safe and secure by giving Glendale a call.


f you have been looking for a way to allow your horse to graze naturally then look no further than the Blair Stable Grazer. The Blair Stable Grazer allows horses to graze and feeding from this position allows the horse to relax their limbs and alleviate back and neck problems while aiding clear sinuses. The Blair Stable Grazer securely fits into the corner of any stable and uses a flexible, durable rubber to store the hay. If a horse leans against the Blair Stable Grazer it simply bends inwards, meaning no damage to the horse or the Blair Stable Grazer. Company owner, Adele said: “The Blair Stable Grazer has proved popular so far. Everyone who’s bought one has found it easy to use and very horse friendly.” The wooden version costs £49.99 and the steel version £59.99, are delivered nationwide at a cost of £12.00 to post and can be purchased by calling Adele at the Blair Livery Yard on 07786151062.


Friday 20.1.12

Labour slam SNP over Scrutiny By Alison Mann


abour councillors have slammed a decision by the new SNP administration to allow two of their councillors to remain in charge of scrutiny. Donald Balsillie and Gary Womersley have continued to hold their roles as Convener and ViceConvener of the council’s Scrutiny Committee after changes saw the SNP take control. The Scrutiny Committee was brought into play by the Labour administration to bring a more accountable and transparent system of scrutinising all aspects of council policy and strategy. It is believed councillors consider it best practise to appoint non-executive elected members to lead roles in the committee. However, the SNP councillors have said to change the committee roles now would be wrong as the work of the committee will be finalised in a matter of months. Councillor Matchett said: “Coming from a background in the Police Force, I expected the Scrutiny Committee to conduct their business in a fair and evidence-based manner, by that I mean examining external inspection reports, providing praise to staff when called for and highlighting areas in need of improvement. When mistakes are made internally, it is the role of

Scrutiny to investigate the reasons and help prevent similar errors occurring. “This did not happen under the SNP leadership who preferred to use their role as an extension of their role as the political opposition. They also have the authority to invite portfolio holders to appear before them to give an account of their stewardship of their service responsibility. In four and two third years, this has happened only once when Sam, Bobby and myself were happy to be given the opportunity.” “Councillor Cadenhead added: “If the SNP had been so concerned about finance and other issues, as they continually claim to be, then it raises a bigger question as to why they choose not to use the investigative powers and responsibility that they have had for the last four years. By holding the Chair and Vice-Chair of Scrutiny committee they have been in the position to determine the true facts of the situation? “Would it be too harsh to suggest that Councillors Womersley, English and Balsillie were more concerned with criticism and innuendo than using the responsibility that was given to them to determine if best practice and value for money was occurring at Clackmannanshire Council? Also, why after taking control of the council, have they decided to use their powers not to allow the opposition to

scrutinise their decision making?” New Council leader, Councillor Gary Womersley has said that to change rolls now would jeopardise the work of the committee which is 99% complete. He added: “Say at last Thursday’s Scrutiny Committee meeting Labour had chaired, they would be scrutinising their own performance. Even if there were more than one more to go, we wouldn’t be scrutinising ourselves. “I have intimated in public that the political balance of the committee will change, albeit the convenor ship will remain the same. “It is ironic that Labour are taking an interest in scrutiny now. They have had all the tools available to them and scrutiny has got to where it is with no help from Labour.”

Councillors Donald Balsillie and Gary Womersley

Charity Concert for Mary’s Meals T

he Rotary Club of Alloa is staging a charity family concert in the Devonvale Hall, Tillicoultry at 8 p.m. (doors open 7.30 p.m) on Friday 17 February. The event features the internationally acclaimed Scottish group Gaberlunzie who will be supported by the Central Scotland Police Pipe Band. All proceeds from the event will be given over to the charity, Mary’s Meals. There will be a raffle with some excellent prizes any reduction in mail room staffing levels. What to be won. we will be doing is giving people the opportunity to Mary’s work in other mail-related posts, such as moving Meals is a medical records and other back-office tasks. This Scottish based takes away the repetitive nature of mail sorting and gives staff much more flexibility during their international working day.” movement that According to NHS Forth Valley Chairman Ian sets up school Mullen, the mail robots are the latest in a long line feeding projects of ground-breaking technology to be installed at the in communities new Forth Valley acute hospital. where poverty “We already have robots fetching and carrying

Robot installed to sort mail at hospital F orth Valley Royal Hospital are leading the way after installing a computerised robotic system to sort letters. The machine will be the first of its kind to be used in Europe. The mail robot, assisted by 28 automated ‘helpers’ can grab mail and place it into the correct ‘dookits’ at an average rate of around 2,000 items an hour, with a top speed of 3,600 letters an hour. It can handle all types of envelopes including medical records, and is expert at reading addresses. Serco Contract Director at Forth Valley Royal Hospital Mike Mackay said: “The mail matrix is widely used in North America and there is also one in the Middle East. I went on a field trip and looked at three sites, both public and private sector. I spoke to the teams and came away very impressed with the system. It is just the ticket for a busy hospital like this.” Altogether the mail room handles 300,000 items a month. The manual process of sorting is now being replaced and, in future, the mail will simply be emptied into a hopper. The items then travel along a conveyor belt where they are photographed by a high speed optical lens. The computer recognises key words and the 28 ‘automatic sorters’ known as i-bots quickly swing into action and wing the letters to the correct pigeon holes. The robotic system can feed up to 1200 pigeon holes; currently around 200 are in use. Mr Mackay added: “This system does not mean


food, linen and waste, and robots which dispense and label medicines. Using robots to sort the huge volumes of mail seemed a natural progression and we are now examining the possibility of moving theatre instruments on the automatic guided vehicle system. This cutting-edge technology is helping make Forth Valley Royal a world leader and we have had visitors from countries as far afield as Russia and Japan coming to Larbert to see robotic equipment in action.” Extensive testing on the new system has taken place over the past few months. A huge data base has been compiled and should the robot occasionally meet an address it doesn’t recognise, it will post the letter into a holding bin. It will then be picked up manually by staff who will make sure that details gleaned from the envelope are added to the extensive data base of names and departments.

and hunger prevent children from gaining an education. Mary’s Meals is a simple idea that works – by providing a daily meal in a place of education, chronically poor children are attracted to the classroom where they can gain a basic education that provides an escape route from poverty. An education can set a child free from poverty in adult life. To gain an education children first need to

attend school and then be given the opportunity to learn. Mary’s Meals is not only feeding children, but it is also allowing the children to attend school and to be educated. Because of the very generous sponsorship received, every single penny generated in ticket and raffle sales will be given over to Mary’s Meals which does tremendous work internationally on a daily basis.


Congratulations to Mrs A Kinross, Coalsnaughton who won a meal for two at the Bridge Inn in our crossword competition last week. Send in your completed crosswords alongside your name, address and telephone number to be in with a chance of winning this week’s meal for two. SEE PAGE 18

Saturday January 28th till Saturday 4th Feb


2012 Tillicoultry




Friday 20.1.12

Alison Mann I’m excited to go see the Dalai Lama I

’m sure many of you will have went through this: realising your favourite band or comedian are playing but knowing the tickets will sell out…fast. What then ensues is a mad dash to get tickets as soon as the ticket line opens, stress as websites crash and a massive relief when your card payment is taken and the tickets are yours. This sort of process is quite expected when huge artists announce a tour – Madonna, Take That and the likes. What I certainly did not expect is for this mad rush to follow the announcement of His Holiness, the Dalai Lama’s tour of the UK. Now the more I think about it, the more it makes sense. After all, he is a spiritual leader with more ‘fans’ than the likes of Madonna. When I heard he was giving a talk, which aims to urge young people to be the change they want to see in the world, to paraphrase another important leader. I’ve always admired the Dalai Lama and have read a number of his books with interest. So the idea of seeing him speaking really appealed to me.

When the tickets were released, for some reason, I didn’t think they’d sell fast but they really did! Just the day after the tour was announced the Usher Hall, where he’s speaking, was advising the tickets were almost sold out and other venues were saying the same thing. I then reverted to my teenage self, eager to get tickets to that big gig, and made a mad dash for the ticket hotline to find there were only a few tickets remaining. I got a pair though, I may be right at the back pretty much out the door but I’m happy I’m going. After the mad rush, I really hope the lecture is worth the hype it has created.

HAVE YOUR SAY Burns tour at Castle Scotland rockets close to S 320,000 BT wi-fi hotspots Do you have something you want to say, or something for Alison to talk about:

WE ARE NOW IN ALLOA. Come and visit us at 38 Primrose Street


ilestone includes nearly 3,200 hotspots in Clackmannanshire extra coverage welcomed by Scottish Chambers of Commerce Wi-Fi users in Scotland can now take advantage of nearly 320,000 Wi-Fi hotspots – almost three times the number of less than two years ago, BT announced today. The rapidly expanding BT network, the largest in the UK, now has more than three million UK hotspots in homes, independent businesses and city centres – including almost 3,200 in Clackmannanshire. Access is free to more than five million BT Broadband customers, plus users of iPads, iPhones, iTouch, Android, Samsung and Blackberry devices and smartphones through other BT partnership agreements. BT’s rapid hotspot growth mirrors the rise in the use of smartphones which are quickly catching up with laptops and PCs around the world as the consumer’s Wi-Fi device of choice *. Brendan Dick, BT Scotland director, said: “BT is already leading the charge in broadband services with the roll out of faster speeds across Scotland, and the rapid growth of Wi-Fi hotspots

increases the ways consumers and businesses can get online. “This is fantastic news for Scotland and another example of major investment by BT in the country’s communications network. This huge growth in the number of hotspots takes flexible working from the home to wherever you need to be and brings the internet right to your fingertips. “Consumers are using their devices for both work and leisure with hotspots making it possible to shop, game and enjoy a variety of applications when out and about. “For small businesses across the nation, Wi-Fi is a great low or no-cost way of working remotely, staying in touch with customers, suppliers and staff and accessing real time travel information quickly, from any wireless PC, tablet or smartphone.” Liz Cameron, Chief Executive of Scottish Chambers of Commerce, said: ““Public Wi-Fi provides crucial support for businesses across Scotland and particularly for our smaller companies. It is an asset whether you are a business person, student, shopper or a visitor to one of our cities – people increasingly expect to be able to get online, wherever they are and

whatever their purpose. “ It is vitally important to our tourist sector as visitors increasingly use mobile devices to access information about local businesses and attractions. The extra coverage now in place will also be a positive growth enabler for Scottish firms and is something we very much welcome.” Last year BT announced a new free mobile application that helps connect BT home broadband customers with an iPad to its network of hotspots. It gives BT home broadband customers easy mobile access to free and unlimited Wi-Fi and includes a mapping service which is updated weekly so that customers can find their nearest hotspot. See www. for ways to get online.

tirling Castle will be marking Burns Day with special castle tours this weekend to explore Rabbie’s connections with its history in celebration of one of Scotland’s most beloved writers. The tours will be held on Saturday January 21 and Sunday January 22 at 12:00 and 2:00 pm each day and are included in the price of admission. Places are limited and are on a first come, first served basis. Gillian Macdonald, Executive Manager at Stirling Castle said: “The Burns Tours are a must for Burns’ fans and offer a unique insight into another aspect of Stirling Castle, one of Scotland’s most iconic and political sites. “Burns was greatly influenced by the personalities, events and issues at Stirling Castle - the infamous Stirling Lines were conceived following his visit to the castle in 1787 and decry the neglected state of the buildings and the loss of the Stewart Monarchy. “It makes you wonder what he would think now if he could see our magnificent Renaissance palace restored to its former glory, the aweinspiring Great Hall with its triumphant oak hammer beam roof and our costumed

characters who bring to life so vividly the great Stewart Dynasty that once ruled this noble land. “These tours mark the end of our Winter Festivals Programme and we are now looking forward to a range of exciting events at Stirling Castle to be launched in the Spring to coincide with the Year of Creative Scotland 2012.” Ross Blevins and Alan Clater, the guides who devised the tour, will be featuring many of Burns’ works including Scots Wha Hae, Ye Jacobites and Tam O’Shanter . Some of the themes that will be explored will include Wallace and Bruce, the Jacobite Rebellion and darker elements of the castle’s past including demonology and witchcraft which feature in some of Burns’ best known works.


Friday 20.1.12

Residents delighted at free wall insulation By Alison Mann


wo Tullibody residents have received free cavity wall insulation as part of a new scheme. Mr and Mrs Brent MacAuley had their cavity walls insulated on January 18 as part of a scheme which installs insulation free of charge, regardless of household income. The Universal Home Insulation Scheme, available to suitable owneroccupiers and private landlords, is in place to help reduce household fuel bills and carbon footprint, is running in Clackmannanshire and the Council has secured funding from the Scottish Government to offer home insulation measures at no cost to owners. This is part of the Council’s ongoing commitment towards the promotion of energy conservation and efficiency. According to the Energy Saving Trust, savings of up to £175 per year can be made by installing loft insulation and £135 per year by installing cavity wall insulation. If a home is suitable, cavity wall and loft insulation will be installed free of charge, regardless of household income. As the available funds are limited, applications for insulation surveys will be allocated on a ‘first come first served’ basis.

Mr MacAuley is pictured outside his home with Cllr Holden and Iain McIntyre Clackmannanshire council has secured over £250,000 of Scottish Government funding to assist home owners make their homes more energy efficient and less costly to heat as well as providing fuel poverty advice and assistance to all residents of Clackmannanshire. The package will help to ensure that local people will benefit from reduced heating bills and will also help those who may already be struggling with debts incurred due

to increasing fuel bills. The Council’s Fuel Poverty Champion, Councillor Craig Holden welcomed the initiative saying: “This will help tackle the rising trend of local people falling into fuel poverty and also help prevent the most vulnerable in the community suffering from a long cold winter.” Owner-occupier who wish to apply for free insulation, should call the Home Energy Scotland Hotline free on 0800 512 012 (quoting:


ClackmannanshireUHIS_2011) as soon as possible to go through a free home energy check to see what support is available. Applicants will then be referred to a surveyor who will visit the property and identify, with agreement, where improvements could be made to insulation. Clackmannanshire residents can also call the Hotline if looking for advice and support to tackle fuel bills. Operations Manager for the


Energy Saving Scotland advice centre Strathclyde & Central, Alex Warren, said: “We are delighted to be working closely with Clackmannanshire Council to tackle rising energy bills in the region. We are urging householders to act now as this is a time limited offer. Call the Home Energy Scotland Hotline on 0800 512 012 and get free, impartial advice on how you can save energy and keep your bills as low as possible.” Also, as part of this project, Clackmannanshire Council is offering tailored energy advice and one-to-one support for people who are experiencing difficulty in meeting the costs of their fuel bills. This service is open to all residents in the Council area. A friendly home assessor can visit you in your home to chat about other ways you can save money and make your home more energy efficient. They can advise on using energy more efficiently, help you obtain the best deals on gas and electricity, help understand and simplify fuel bills, tariffs and meter readings, and also act on your behalf with utility suppliers to deal with fuel arrears and payment plans. To take advantage of this limited offer or find out more please call for free, impartial advice on 0800 512 012.

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hone City has moved to a new location but will still be offering the same great service to customers. The shop, formerly located in Drysdale Street has moved to Mill Street and owner Erol Yazgan is keen to let residents know they are still offering great services. Phone City is a one stop shop for all your mobile phone needs. They stock a wide range of phone accessories and offer an excellent phone repair service.

Customers can bring their broken phones into the store and they can fix it, from broken screens to dodgy speakers. Phone City also offers an iphone screen repair service where work will be completed in around 30 minutes. They also offer cash for old phones and sell good quality second hand handsets. Take a visit to Phone City’s new premises for all your mobile phone needs.



Friday 20.1.12

3,000 mile bike trip for John By Alison Mann


n adventurous Tullibody man is taking on a gruelling Bavarian motorcycle tour to raise money for Help For Heroes. John McLain, 40 will set off from Grangemouth on January 24 on a Honda Transalp motorbike and travel through France, Germany and the Bavarian Alps to reach the Elephant Rally in Thurmansbang, East Germany, on 27 January, where he will camp in sub-zero conditions before departing for home. Named the Elephant Rally, the journey will see him cover 3,000 miles in eight days battling temperatures down to -20. The former ABR will also be riding the route solo after his military friend became

injured. John said: “I was originally going with a friend who’s still in the military. He’s injured at the moment so I thought why not do it myself. He’s getting rehabilitation and should hopefully be out in January. I thought I could raise money for a good charity. John has been riding motorbikes for around 20 years and works for Phoenix Honda, who have supported him in his efforts. The Honda showroom held a charity night that raised ÂŁ1,000 and raised a further ÂŁ1,000 through donations into collection buckets from customers visiting the dealership. Phoenix Honda will also provide the bike John will use, which has special tyres and heated grips and he will

John with his Honda sponsored bike wear a special heated jacket to protect him from the harsh weather. John added: “The temperature could be as low as -10 to -20 degrees. The roads are quite good for most of the journey but the last five or 10 miles might be a problem as I’ll be driving up

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ollar Academy entrance tests for places for August 2012 will take place on Saturday 28th January. Means-tested bursaries are available to pupils entering Form I in the Senior School and any interested parents or pupils are asked to contact the school for further information, to arrange a visit, or to register for the forthcoming assessments. Founded in 1818, Dollar Academy has a proud heritage and a wellestablished reputation for high achievement. For generations, children across central Scotland have been educated at Dollar, and a great many have gone on to achieve notable success. Dollar is one of Scotlandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s leading independent schools, with a real focus on high quality teaching and modern resources. Pupils have the opportunity to thrive in an

23% child poverty in Wee County


new report has shown that 23% of children in Clackmannanshire live in families that are out of work or on benefits. The worst council ward is Clackmannanshire Central which has 28% of children living in poverty. The results were published by the Campaign to End Child Poverty alongside a child poverty map of the whole of the UK.

into the Alps where there will be a lot of snow. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m looking forward to it.â&#x20AC;? John has been training hard for the mission, particularly in how to survive arctic conditions. To sponsor John got to johnmclain

19 applicants for every job


environment of ambition and encouragement. Last year, Dollar pupils made headlines by achieving some of the top results in Scotland at Higher and this included national recognition in the subjects of Economics, Biology, Computing, Maths and Physics. Dollar also had one of the highest exam presentation rates in Scotland, with 84% of pupils achieving the full quota of 5 or more passes at Higher. Despite being a large school with 1250 pupils, there is a real family feel at Dollar. It is not all about exam results either; there is

an obvious passion for sport, art, music and drama, with internationalists in many fields. Entry to Dollar Academy is selective. Tests for August 2012 entry into P3-S2 will take place at the school on 28th January. Admission for children outwith these year groups is arranged separately by interview. School visits can be organised at any time. Prospective families are invited to contact the school directly for more information or to register for the entrance examinations. Email:

here are 19 applications vying for every job advertised in Clackmannanshire according to a new study. According to research by think-tank IPPR North Clackmannanshire came out second with 19 people chasing every vacancy. Only Dunbartonshire scored higher with 19 people fighting for each job. Ed Cox, director of IPPR North, said: â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Governmentâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s youth contract is a step in the right direction to help tackle the unemployment problem but more needs to be done to help the areas of the UK where people are really struggling to find work. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Government should guarantee a job for everyone who has been unemployed for more than a year paid at the minimum wage, targeted at the worst affected areas first but then rolled out everywhere.â&#x20AC;?

Alison Garnham, Executive Director of the Campaign, said:â&#x20AC;&#x153;The child poverty map paints a stark picture of a socially segregated Britain where the life chances of millions of children are damaged by poverty and inequality. But it also gives us reason for hope. The child poverty target has already been met in the Prime Ministerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s constituency and nearly a hundred others, so never let it be said that the targets are impossible to meet. If we can do it in Witney today, we can do it in Hackney tomorrow. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Prime Minister should make a New Yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s resolution

to keep his pledge to â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;make British poverty historyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; so that not just children in Witney, but children all over Britain can enjoy a childhood free from poverty.â&#x20AC;? The Institute for Fiscal Studies has warned that child poverty will rise by 400,000 children by 2015 unless the government takes a more progressive approach to tackling the deficit. Alison Garnham added: â&#x20AC;&#x153;Child poverty costs us billions picking up the pieces of damaged lives and unrealised potential, so itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a false economy if we donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t prioritise looking after children today.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Targeting cuts on families will prove both an economic and a social disaster, with businesses losing billions of pounds of demand and families struggling to keep their kids clothed, fed and warm. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Government urgently needs a serious plan to stop the rise in unemployment and to create jobs so that young people and parents can get out of the dole queue and into the workplace. We need a plan to target investment through the family purse to stimulate the economy, so that shops, services and businesses get the customers they need to stay afloat and recruit staff.â&#x20AC;?

weecounty business

Starting up S

start up? What if fear of failure had blocked off my entrepreneurial path before I’d even started off on it? What if it doesn’t work? Right now, as I write this, I’m waiting for the flood of bookings to begin for my first group of creative writing classes. And I’m nervous. Not quite wake-up-in-cold-sweat nervous, but I can’t help being concerned. I have (increasingly as time goes on) moments of wondering if there really is enough of a market to justify my business start-up? Will all the obsessing, the meetings, the networking, the research, and above all: learning about taxation – will it all have been worth it? Is anyone looking at my website? My facebook page? My tweets? … Is anyone out there? If I’m being honest, I’m not so worried about having wasted a lot of my time and a little money. I suppose I’m mostly afraid of falling flat on my (Christmas widened) derriere in front of my peers who all know what I’ve been trying to do (and one or two who’d cheerfully lead a “Laura’s failed”

o that entrepreneurial spark has lit you up. You can see into the great distance of your bright future and you can hear yourself echoing Del boy “This time next year…” I had that light bulb moment at the start of October. When looking for a creative writing class to help motivate me with my own writing, the closest I could find was in Glasgow. I thought of my dream of teaching creative writing, as a published author, to aspiring writers on holiday retreats. Then I wondered: what’s stopping me from working towards that dream right now? I could take my love of teaching, my passion for writing, and put the two together – helping other writers at the same time Within a week, I had Figment Creative Expression registered as a limited company, and my website was up and running. I haven’t felt a rush of excited achievement like that since I started teaching. I told my husband he was married to a Managing Director of a Limited Company! So what if I hadn’t decided to take the proverbial plunge and

Friday 20.1.12

cheer squad). But that’s just pride speaking. And when did pride really have anything to do with business, really? So I’m realising that when starting a new business, it’s important to reassure yourself. I’m in the lucky position that I haven’t have many start-up costs. Starting up Figment Creative Expression Ltd has really been more of a “what-if” experiment, an extended hobby, really. Plus, it’s January after all. Everyone’s belt-tightening. I have moments of feeling that everything will be okay, and even if things don’t work out now, I’ll keep plugging away at it until the word gets out and all of Central Scotland’s aspiring writers will be battering down my doors to get to my classes. For the moment, I’ll keep checking my e-mail. I’ll keep posting on Facebook and Twitter (hopefully not to an spam-worthy, irritating level). I’ll keep my chin up, an entrepreneurial twinkle in my eye and a smile on my face. Because this time next year… who knows?




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weecounty services 01259 404 006 To advertise in this section, call the Wee County sales team NOW

Promote your business D

o you find advertising your business difficult? A service business, eg plumber, joiner, tiler etc, can be the most challenging of all to advertise. If it is a business offering home services, this can be very personal by nature, because rather than selling products, what you are really selling is your own, and your employees, skills and talents. Here’s how to get the most from your advertising in the Wee County Services Section. 1 WHAT MAKES YOUR BUSINESS UNIQUE. What are you best at? Having a specialised service can help a small service business take advantage over competitors in the same field. 2 FOCUS ON BENEFITS. Rather than talking about your qualifications and experience, shift the focus to the benefits that your potential client will receive. This is what your future clients are interested in hearing about. For every feature that you list about your service, it’s the benefits of those features that you want your audience to remember. 3 TARGET YOUR EFFORTS. Who most needs what you have to offer? You can’t market to everyone. Even the giant companies know exactly the customer they are trying to reach. Consider the age range, income level, interests and gender of your target audience. Learn as much as you can about this group. Although there are many other factors that you can consider, these few will get you moving in the right direction. 4 MATCH THE MESSAGE TO THE MARKET. You’ve determined who your target market is and why they need what you have to offer. Now it’s time to assess how this group can best be reached. What do they read, view and listen to? What products do they purchase? How are other businesses reaching this group? This will help determine what your most effective marketing strategies will be.

5 CONSIDER YOUR BUDGET. There are low cost ways of advertising within the weecounty news, and you don’t need premium spots to accomplish your goals. Most businesses spend about 2 to 5% of their gross sales on advertising. If yours is a new business, you can project this figure from what you anticipate your sales will be. 6 DETERMINE COST PER AD. Multiple smaller ads are more effective than one big ad that could eat into your entire budget. Many successful businesses run solely off of classified ads in newspapers. Special interest pieces can be had for the cost of a press release or just letting the news department know that you exist, and what makes you unique. 7 BE CONSISTENT. When you find what works, stick with it. Even if your chosen method doesn’t work as well as you’d hoped, it often pays to stay with it for a few more months. Familiarity with an ad will often bring in customers that don’t respond the first few times they see it. They need to know that you’re going to be around when they need you. Don’t let up on your advertising when you’ve got all the business you need. If you want to stay busy, steady advertising is the key. To discuss this further or to take advantage of advertising within the weecounty services section, call our sales team on 01259 404006.


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Friday 20.1.12

Labour host street surgery


Festive display raises £500 for hospice By Alison Mann

Samuel Lowry with fundraising manager Angela Gillies



abour Councillors Janet Cadenhead and Kenny Earle were joined by Labour Party colleagues, members and supporters for the first street surgery of 2012.

Councillor Earle said: “It was good to be out and about meeting the people of Alloa in the town centre this morning and the response we have had was very positive indeed.”

Sauchie man has raised over £500 for Strathcarron Hospice after decorating his house with Christmas lights and displays. Samuel Lowry, puts up the festive lighting and display every year to collect for charity. This year, all proceeds went to Strathcarron Hospice in memory of his wife. He said: “A lot of neighbours came to see the lights and a lot of people came in cars. I’d like to thank everyone who donated and thank my neighbours for their patience at so many people coming into the street. “I’d also like to thank the staff at Banchory Primary who held a collection and raised £50.”

Mr Lowry managed to raise £500 added: “I thought that was really good. A lady came from Strathcarron Hospice and collected the money yesterday.” A Strathcarron spokesperson said; “We would like to thank Mr Lowry for this donation. We appreciate the efforts by him in raising for us, and thank him for choosing Strathcarron.” Strathcarron Hospice need in excess of £65,000 per week to deliver their services throughout the year. Every single penny that is raised for the hospice helps and they appreciate every donation no matter how big or small.

Alloa Academy Inter-House competition

Congratulations to pupils in Bruce House who have won this week’s Inter-House competition and gain 15 points for the House. Schaw were in second place gaining 10 points with Erskine in third place gaining 5 House points. 1S1 and 2S2 topped the list for weekly co-operation – well done to all class members.

December Newsletter

The December newsletter is still available on the school website. It contains reports about the work of each faculty and many great photographs of the events which have been going on in the school. If you wish to have a paper copy of the newsletter, please call into the School Office.

Start-up Stirling

We had an excellent response to the collection for StartUp Stirling and all of our goods will be collected today. The attached photo shows what was collected from one class. Thank you to all who contributed – you are making a difference to people within our local community.

Reading Awards Our Reading Record Programme is going strong and last week saw a Silver Award being gained by Jamie-Lee McLuckie of IE1. Other members of 1E1 gained bronze awards – Lia Hunter, Niamh Cunningham, Shannon Wardrope and Michael McQueen. Well done to all of you. Congratulations also to the following S3

pupils who have achieved the Advanced Bronze Level in the programme: Leah Bancroft, Lois Boa, Angus Boyd, Max Breakenridge, Eva Carberry, Cameron Chalmers, Nicole Craig, Emma Crowe, Lucy Deas, Rebecca Devine, Jordan Dow, Craig Duffy, Cara Fullerton, Jacob Gehlan, Ross Green, Kiera Grogan, Kirk Higgins, Courtney Hunter, Edgar Lugo, Molly Lyle, Ronan McAleer, Lee Mitchell, Gillian Peden, Joanna Petrie, Ellie Poskitt-Marshall, Blair Rankine and Peter Watson.

Copies of this report are still available from the school Office. Our December Newsletter is also still available on the website

Term dates

S4 reports

Reports for S4 were distributed on Friday of last week. The report also contains December’s tracking and monitoring information. If you have not received your child’s report please call the school office.

HMIE FollowThrough Report

Contributions to Start-Up from a House group.

The mid-term holiday will be the week beginning Monday 13th February and pupils will be back in school on Monday 20th February. Staff have two days on In-Service on Monday 13th and Tuesday 14th February. The last day of the term will be Friday 30th March, when we will close for the two-week Easter holiday. Tracking and monitoring

letters for S3-S6 will be issued on the following dates next term: Mon 30th January; Mon 5th March; Thurs 29th March

CfE Evening – a date for your diary

Parents of children in Primary 7, S1 and S2 are invited to attend a presentation on the Curriculum for Excellence at the school on Tuesday 7th February at 6.00p.m. Information will be shared at this presentation about the way ahead for pupils moving into S3 next session. This will be followed by the usual Option choice Evening on Thursday 1st March

ROUND THE WORLD STOPOVERS, BUDGET, INDEPENDENT & ADVENTURE TRAVEL EXPERTS Shannon Wardrope, Jamie-Lee McLuckie, Michael McQueen and Niamh Cunningham receive their Reading Awards

1000s of discounted tours worldwide Open to the public 7 days a week at Stirling University Tel: 01786 472023



Friday 20.1.12

weecounty Alloa & Hillfoots


Whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s on ..

House Sales â&#x20AC;˘Classified Public Notices â&#x20AC;˘ Recruitment Articles For Sale â&#x20AC;˘Personal Motoring Situations Vacant Births, Deaths & Marriages Advertising is an investment not an expense Contact our sales team on

01259 404 006

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D Day for Alva Pool By Alison Mann


he fate of the Alva pool now rests in the hands of Clackmannanshire council as members of Ochil Leisure Enterprises handed in their business plan today (Friday). The group rallied round support and handed their plan to the council, which if accepted could create much needed jobs in the area as well as providing obvious health benefits. Their proposal outlines their plans for

Burglar Alarms Home & Commercial

keeping the Alva pool open for members of the community. Simon Kindlen, spokesman for the group said: â&#x20AC;&#x153;At our most recent meeting we discussed the project and came to the conclusion that itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s about more than the pool. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s also to do with the health of a community and the wealth of a community and creating jobs. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It is a fallacy that you canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t make

money from a pool. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It will be a cultural community hub as well.â&#x20AC;? OLE had previously written a letter to Clackmannanshire council informing them that the report submitted today would be an â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;interim business planâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;. Time constraints meant they could not produce a full report. Within the letter, signed by Jenny Paterson, the group state the interim

business plan will: â&#x20AC;&#x153;Summarise research to date and include financial modelling to show what scenario will be sustainable and provide health and community benefit. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The second stage will be to engage a team of consultants to undertake in depth research and business planning on behalf of the group. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Ochil Leisure Enterprises are currently exploring a number of options

Continued on page 13


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Alloa St Mungoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Parish Church of Scotland: We are holding a Burns Supper and Ceilidh on Friday 27 January in Alloa Town Hall at 7.30pm. A three course meal will be served, with Jack Delaney and his band leading the Ceilidh. Tickets costing ÂŁ13, and further details are now available from the Rev Sang Y. Cha on 213872 or Brian Robinson on 720010. Clackmannanshire Tenants & Residents Federation are having Annual General Meeting on Tuesday 31st January at 2pm in Craigleith Room Alloa Business Centre. Miss Elaine Mcpherson Chief Executive of Clackmannanshire Council and Mr John Gillespie Head of Community & Regulatory Services will be attending. All welcome. Sunday night dance: Old time, modern and sequence dance will be held in Alloa Town Hall from now until April 15 2011 from 7pm for 7.30pm until 10.30pm. Admission is ÂŁ5. On January 29, J Morganâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Spicy Music will be providing the entertainment. Bring your own refreshments. Alloa Carers Centre: Alloa Carers Centre is working with Community House and has a weekly coffee morning at Community House, 23 Maree Court on Mondays between 10am and noon. All carers welcome. Claremont Primary School Enrolment: Parents of children who are five years old on or before 28 February, 2013, residing in the Claremont catchment area, should come to the school on Thursday 26th January between 9am and 10am or 2.15pm and 3.15pm OR on

Friday 27th January between 10.30am and 11.30am or 2.15pm and 3.15pm. Please bring along your childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s birth certificate and proof of residency. For further information or if the times stated are unsuitable please telephone the school office on 01259 214978.


Alva Baptist Church: Coffee mornings are held in the church each Wednesday from 10am to 11.30am. Go and join them for a friendly chat over a hot drink and home baking.

Clackmannan Clackmannan Chapter No. 464 Oder of the Eastern Star: A bingo tea will be held on Tuesday February 28, 2012 in the Masonic Hall, Clackmannan at 7.30pm. Admission and tea 60p. All welcome. An invitation is extended to all members, 60 years and over (accompanied by their partner) to the senior members dinner which is being held on Tuesday March 13, 2012 in the Masonic Hall, Clackmannan, 6.30pm for 7pm. Names by 10 February to secretary 01259 215470.


Friday 20.1.12


What’s on in your weecounty The 36th Stirling (Clackmannan) Company, The Boys’ Brigade: meets in Clackmannan Town Hall on Fridays from 5.30 pm. New recruits will be made most welcome and parents should contact the leaders for details of the session’s programme. Contact Kathy for Anchor Boys on 07891389542, Lucy for Junior Section on 07538693554 and Bill for the Company Section on 216763. Clackmannan Parish Church of Scotland: Sunday morning worship is at 11.00 am and there will be a Traidcraft stall after the service. On Monday at 7.30 pm the Guild welcomes Jim Taylor of New Struan. On Tuesday the Coffee Morning is open from 10.00 am in the Church Hall. On Wednesday in the Bruce Memorial Hall the Church Choir meets for practice at 6.45 pm followed at 8.00 pm. by the Prayer Group. For more information on these and other activities please visit our web site at www.clackmannankirk. org. Anyone requiring the services of a minister should contact the Revd Scott Raby on 211255. The THRIFT Shop is held in the Town Hall on Fridays during the school term from 1.30pm to 3.30pm. We are always looking for Gents’, Ladies’ and Children’s clothing. Come along, have a browse, a cuppa and a chat.

Coalsnaughton Coalsnaughton Primary School Primary 1 Enrolment: Parents of children who are five years old on or before 28 February 2013 residing in the Coalsnaughton/ Devonside catchment area should come to the school office week commencing 23 January between 10am and 10:30am. Please bring along your child’s birth certificate. For further information please contact the school office on 01259 750204. Further details regarding nursery enrolment will follow in due course. Coalsnaughton Burns Club: Cash bingo every Monday in the lounge. Contact 01259 750517. Eyes down at 8.15pm, finished by 9.45pm. Fruit Barra: The Coalsnaughton Fruit Barra is open in

Coalsnaughton Village Hall from Monday to Friday 10am until 5pm. Everyone is welcome to enjoy a cuppa at Coalsnaighton’s Community Cafe Society. If you have an hour or two to spare to help, please call into the hall. Telephone 01259 759099.


Kincardine Dollar Bowling Club: Thanks to everyone who has supported the bingo teas. The bingo teas resume in 2012 on Monday 30 January at 7.30pm. Dollar Museum: The few remaining calendars are for sale in The Paper Shop in Dollar. The Museum is now closed and will re-open on Easter Saturday, 7th April, with a new exhibition. The Museum will then be open at the usual times of Saturdays from 11am to 1pm and from 2pm to 4.30pm and Sundays from 2pm until 4.30 pm. The Museum is at the top of the East Burnside. Entry is free and all are welcome. New time for Zumba Fitness Class: The classes are held on Wednesdays in Maguire Gymnasium, Dollar Academy, from 7pm to 8pm. Call Irene on 07743785103. SWRI the next meeing of the institute will be held on Monday 6th Feb at 7.25 pm, in the Civic centre. When the Rev Mary Henderson will be giving us a Belly Dancing Extravibanza. Competitions 1 Handmade tassel. 2 Music box.

Fishcross Charity Shop: The Cats Protection charity shop in Alloa Road, Fishcross, is open on Saturday from 1pm to 4pm and Sunday from 1pm to 4pm selling good second hand clothing, bric-abrac, books and new goods.

The next meeting is on Wednesday, 25th January at 7pm in the Community Centre. Jim Banks will be presenting “Alloa in Old Postcards” which should be of local interest. As usual, visitors will be welcome.

Muckhart Muckhart Quilters: The group meet on the first Tuesday of each month in the Coronation Hall from 7pm to 9pm. Contact Mavis 781473 or Sue 743226.

Sauchie Sauchie and Fishcross U F Church: The theme last Sunday morning was struggling in Christian Service? Sheena Hogg read part of 2 Corinthians chapter 4. In the evening, the theme was Confusing Spiritual Lives? Sylvia Rankine read part of Galatians chapter 4. The Christian Explored continues on Wednesday evening. This is a series containing seven topics which cover the basics of the Christian Faith. An invitation is given to anyone who feels that they would benefit. We shall meet from 7 until 8.30 p.m. on January 11, 18 and 25, on February 1, and if required, on alternate Wednesdays from February 15. Each topic is based around teaching on a DVD. The Women’s Association meets on Thursday at

2.15 p.m. The Friday Club for Kids (Leo Club) meets from 6 until 7.30 p.m. Services on Sunday will be as usual at 11 a.m. and 6.30 p.m. The Kites Group and crèche will meet at 11 a.m. ] Sauchie and Coalsnaughton Parish Church: The Rev Bill Izett conducted both services on Sunday 15 January. Mrs Lily Sewell read the Scripture lesson which was taken from Ch1 v3-8 of Paul’s letter to the Phillipians. In his sermon Rev Izett told the congregation that sometimes we correlate happiness with our circumstances but Paul told of joy in his interactions with God. As Christians, God has touched our hearts and we should look for ways in conversation, in our letters, in our meeting with others and in our worship to reflect on what joy really is in the knowledge of our salvation by Jesus. We should remember the JOY jingle sung by the Young Church, Jesus first, Yourself last and Others in between. A Session meeting will be held at 7 pm on Wednesday 18 January.

Tillicoultry Ben Cleuch Burns Club: The 62nd Anniversary Supper of Ben Cleuch Burns Club will be held on 28 January, 2012 in Tillicoultry Golf Club. The Immortal Memory will be proposed by Mr Charlie Paterson. There is a full supporting programme and we look forward to a successful evening. Further details can be obtained from the secretary, Mr John Biggam 17 Stirling St., Tillicoultry FK13 6EA. Any member

who has not received notification of the Anniversary Supper should contact the Secretary as soon as possible.

Tullibody Lodge Ladywell 1474: Regular meeting on January 24 at 19.30. There will also be a ballot. The degree will be an E/A degree. A visitation will be coming from BGLOS. Jim Steedman, General Secretary.

Do you have an event you would like to publish in ‘whats on in your wee county’? Email the details to: or call: 01259 404006


Friday 20.1.12

New season, new start Start a new season with an optimistic approach and a fresh set of resolutions.


ummer is always a big thing. During the summer build-up we go on diets, attempt to shape up, try on last year’s clothes and decide we still need a little more work. Now that summer’s coming to an end, we tend to lose steam. But why give up the optimism? Resolutions are usually made at New Year’s or before the summer, but in some ways the chances of sticking to them are stacked against you. Why? Because you’ll only compare yourself with others, whether you like it or not, and when your mates start to fail it’s too easy to justify following in their footsteps. And New Year’s is so loaded with expectation that one slip-up feels like an earth-shattering disaster.


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Think something differe Do something differen Seasonal resolutions So what about post-summer resolutions you can make and work towards on your own terms? For a lot of us winter means greyness and the overwhelming temptation to stay in bed. The idea of giving your life an overhaul seems out of the question. But think about it, there’s a lot less pressure and plenty of time to decide on things you really think you can achieve. The fact is, human beings are creatures of habit, and even though making big changes can ultimately be very positive, doing something different is always scary. Changing set patterns and routines means that you have to step out of your comfort zone. What’s important to remember is that change is sometimes necessary, as long as it’s not just on a whim.

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Friday 20.1.12

Being positive I

f you’re happy and positive, you’ll find life easier than if you’re miserable. And, according to numerous research studies, you’ll get fewer colds and infections and you may even live longer! This sounds great in theory, but here’s how to put it into practise. In recent years, experts have started looking at our happiness and positive thinking in a different way. After the Second World War the emphasis on mental health was mostly about curing mental illnesses once they had started. As Professor Martin Seligman, founder of the Positive Psychology movement, says: “Psychology has badly neglected the positive side of life.” Nowadays, there’s much more emphasis on prevention, about developing a positive attitude, and taking charge of your own ability to be happy. When we do that, we will generally have a much healthier state of mind.

Can negative people become more positive? Yes, they can. Of course, some individuals do genuinely seem to have been born as sunny-natured, optimistic people, but all of us can re-think our approach to life and become more positive. It’s just a question of getting our heads round it.

Is there a secret to being

Dealing with changes Deciding to do something different can give you a big boost. But sooner or later, the hard work sets in, and you might feel that you just can’t be bothered. If you’ve broken down your tasks into smaller sections, you can aim for certain milestones and reward yourself accordingly. If you’re the type of person who loses motivation easily, make your rewards bigger at the beginning to get your enthusiasm going. Or if you are too easily satisfied, save the better rewards for the end.

positive and happy? Not really. But there are definitely things you can do to cultivate a more positive attitude. For a start you can accept that: Happiness is a choice. When something upsets us, theres a split-second when we can opt to be miserable about it, or not. Of course, this doesn’t apply when something deeply upsetting happens like someone close to us dies or we get dumped, although even then people can develop an ability to view things in a more positive light. When it comes to irritations like trains being late, bosses being difficult, or college work being complicated or boring, we do have an option. We can either allow it to make us miserable and indeed to ruin our whole day - or we can shrug it off, and move on. Seligman learnt this important secret from his five year-old daughter. It was as a result of this that the Positive Psychology movement evolved. He often used to be grumpy, being a busy scientist with loads of responsibilities, but one day his little girl told him that she’d made a decision to stop whining. She said: “Daddy, if I can do that, you can stop being such a grouch!” In other words, she revealed to him that he had a choice about his mood. This simple idea changed Seligman’s life and it can change yours too. But if you’ve got depression that is far more than just feeling low, this may not be enough to help you through the bad times and sometimes its not so easy to shake the blues, so make sure you get some advice from your doctor (GP) about getting further help.

Hints and tips on becoming more positive • Train yourself to notice when you are happy and try to collect five happy moments every single day. • Get active - physical activity releases happy chemicals in our brains. • Sign up as a volunteer research shows that helping others gives us a sense of wellbeing. • Keep in contact with your mates - scientists report that individuals with a good social network are more likely to be positive people. • Write a letter of thanks to someone who has helped you or had a great influence on you. This will increase your positive and contented feelings. • Eat healthily, drink plenty of water and get sufficient sleep. It’s hard to feel positive if you aren’t treating your body with care and respect.

Tips: Don’t try to do everything at once: too many people decide that they want to go on a diet, join a gym, give up smoking, change their job, and find a new partner all in one go. That just isn’t going to happen all at once, and you’re only making your goals more difficult to achieve. Big changes take time, and quick fixes can backfire, leaving you feeling disheartened or even like a failure. Prepare yourself: there’s no point deciding to quit smoking if you’re hoarding just-in-case ciggies under the mattress. The greater the temptation, the quicker you’ll screw up. And you don’t want to keep reminding yourself of what you’ve given up! Focus on the immediate: think about getting through the next minute, hour or day. Imagining a lifetime without alcohol/cigarettes/chocolate just won’t help. And the further you get, the easier it will become!

Giving things up Giving up anything that’s played an important part in your life is going to be hard. There are bound to be times when your resolve threatens to cave in, even once you think the worst is over. If you’re giving up something tangible, like smoking, save the money you would otherwise have spent. It soon builds up, and after the first tough month you can treat yourself to something with all the money you’ve kept back.

Be optimistic Don’t lose sight of the fact that masses of people have been in your position, and gone on to conquer their bad habits. The key is to set yourself up with strategies for overcoming those inevitable moments of weakness, from talking things through with a mate to taking up an activity that’ll keep you occupied.





9 9 9









Friday 20.1.12


Your Horoscope Predictions By Anne Smith Aries

Aries (21Mar March April) 20- -20Apr 20 xxxx The Lunar eclipse will bring in change With Mars, your planetary ruler, conjunct for you and this will Uranus this week youleave couldyou befeeling in a rebellious,but impatient wanting unsettled allows mood, you to not let go of to waste energy on time wasters. who and whatinno longer serves you.or Nevertheless your impulsiveness impatience youword mayfor scare Fun is the key youthe thiswrong month people away. Meantime looksand likethis as sociable Aries loves toitparty someone is about to have a change of is the perfect month foe it, enjoy! heart, or at least wish they hadn’t been so upfront and honest. Taurus (21 April - 21 May)


Libra (24 Sept - 23 Oct) Libra

Sep - 23 Octsay so Forewarned forearmed as they xxxxxxxxxxis23 With Mercury you need to take be prepared toretrograde be more confused than usual with and Neptune and Saturneducational, in opposing your time not complicate corners you will feel like running away but loyalty pulls youorthe other way, from metaphysical travel matters. Thisthe week 10th it is important to keep your mind also sees a new Moon in your opposite open to new possibilities and allow others to contribute as this will help balance sign of Aries suggesting a new start or new your mind.

approach to love could be on the cards.

Scorpio (24 Oct - 22 Nov) Scorpio

20 Apr 20 May Your inner strength is to -your credit xxxxxxxxx Withthis Venus, your planetary in but sometimes attracts ruler, the wrong Pisces around you’re looking goodletsopeople make people you, don’t the most of theofastrological take advantage your goodweather nature and let it enhance your persuasiveness this month and learn to say NO! The and recent attempts at wheeling and lunar eclipse onthis theweek’s 10th gives the dealing. Since newyou Moon energy lovethis as highlights Pluto gets your cosyneed with falls in for Aries, Venus passion willskills reignite. to invest in your and talents if you want to keep your edge.

24 Oct xxxxxxxx You know what you want- 21 thisNov With Mars conjunct Uranus, month as you see the targetthis insight could be anyour explosive time andall you plough way through the achieve your goals, youtape couldtoblow a fuse if you spread ifyourself those around agree too Withdon’t Mercury you will have no qualms inproblems leaving retrograde communication them behind, a great month for and misunderstandings are more completing projects. likely so try not too shoot first and

Gemini (22 May - 21 June) 21 May - 21 of Jun This to jump the xxxx month you decide With your planetary ruler,beliefs, fenceMercury, and stand firmly with your retrograde until the 23rd April, you could you are a force to be reckoned with and be in for a tricky few weeks. A dispute or itdisagreement is a good timeis to make those indicated with amoves friend and startone. planning Pluto you helps or loved It mayfor be2012! that either or someone close to you is not being entirely you get love back into the fore front of honest or straightforward, or even that your mind as the past hurt dissolve away you really are not sure what you want from the 10th. right now and are therefore trying to force events to make up your mind for you.

Sagittarius (23 Nov - 21 Dec) 22 Nov It life- 21 andDec xxis important to celebrate With a planetary Aries, youto to enjoy it, but itpile-up is also in important deal issues,that yesthe youtide may with haveimportant a growing sense hunches this month butmore. will soon are turngood in your favour once leaving practicalities to chance could With Mercury, the ruler of Virgo and your cause you stress at a later date, try to opposite signand of Gemini, retrograde, it be prepared keep communications is necessary look with towards the area of clear until theto14th Mercury important relationships for some sense retrograde. of what lies ahead.


Cancer (22 June - 23 July)


22 Junand - 22 Jul The moon in Gemini with xxxxxxxxx You’ve probably become having the lunar eclipse on use theto10th it is to carry your own and theto weight important thatweight you listen and of some other people too. With the Sun trust youryou instincts still in Aries shouldn’tasletyou yourare fearsruled by moon andtaking you on intuition will andthe anxieties about even more duties stopall-time you from high, makingso thebelieve most of be at an opportunities on the front.and That people what you feel thiscareer month seek you out is very flattering as long as nothing can go wrong. they’re not too demanding, in part you may at times be unsure of other’s true intentions.

Leo (24 July - 23 Aug)


A natural23 creative youAug are at your Jul - 22 xxxxxxxxx happiest whenretrograde you can letuntil yourthe With Mercury imagination away with its self or 23rd April, arun promising commercial and with the sun in your sister sign professional opportunity or endeavour of Sagittarius thisorisget theaideal may disappear little month crazy for thisbefore to come to the great even you’ve hadfore. timeA to get planner you can wait to finances organize the comfortable. Personal are set to night proveout a bitand tricky Christmas withnow youand in long-term commitments charge it should go with ahave bang!to be considered tentative.

Virgo (24 Aug - 23 Sept)


23 Aug xxxxxxxxx The force is strong with- 22 youSep this month With Mercury, planetary ruler, as you have your a charismatic pullretrograde as you until 23rd April, these really are interesting exuberate andindrive along times. With aenergy new Moon Aries indications are that finances may well bewill under with practicality, people sitthe up spotlight or at least a contributing factor in and take notice, and some of you will the events that are unfolding. With Mercury feel that you achieve anything, retrograde therecan is usually some unfinished business, affecting financial well you most can, likely so stand up and get the arrangements or the resources of others recognition deserve. which needs toyou be sorted before you can get on with things.

answer questions later.


Capricorn (22 Dec - 20 Jan)


22 Dec - 19 Jan Reminiscing and dragging up the past xxxxx can sometimes be good but there in With Mercury retrograde andif Venus are grudges then where Pisces, you there may be leftthat’s feeling a little they are best you cannot change bemused by left, someone who seems to the pastofand it isway a waste time and go out their to flirtofwith you or energy, to focus on the and at leasttry tempt you with anfuture interesting remember can then be asretreat great aslike you offer or twoitand want makeasit,you andmove you can! a shytohorse in on the


Aquarius (21 Jan - 19 Feb)


xxxxxxx With Mars in Virgo20 youJan feel- 18 theFeb An opportunity reapwill theMake rewards pull and a drivetothat you your recent studiousness and aofforce to be reckoned with, allow efforts on the front is the energy ofcommunication this to push you indicated with a new Moon in Aries. forward onto new project which Mercury’s retrograde motion suggests delight as youespecially are a creative financialyou matters, related sign andhome, a creative idea the to your property or for domestic festivities is worth all that planning. and family expenses needs to be addressed.

Pisces (20 Feb - 20 Mar)


xxxxxxxxxx 19start Febof-the 20month Mar as It is important to you mean to gotoon, try to keep While it is nice beso popular, to be your in demand romantically, personally andand thoughts and communications clear professionally, retrograde until uplifting, if youwith can Mercury remember to do this the 23rd April, things could get complicated. then everything in your garden will be You may be goingonout yourmay way to make rosy The eclipse theof10th make an important and who professional you reminiscepersonal about those are no relationship work and now, just when longer in your life, try to remember the you felt you’ve done the difficult bit, other good times keep yourless thoughts people startand being a little reliablehigh! and trustworthy and even unpredictable.

Anne is a Spiritualist Medium, Tarot reader and a Reiki Master & available for private consultation, healings and church services

contact, ANNE on

entertainment weecounty



Email or visit

Angel Anne

Spiritualist Medium/Psychic &Tarot

Sizzling Suzie’s Autumn Delights

Ho, ho, ho! Yes Christmas is just around the corner and if you havenít done your Christmas shopping then hurry up. I am asking for Johnny Depp again this year. What? A girl can dream alentines Day,had February is known by many for fella sharing love canít she? Santa has his letter early from the wee affection. Its is a all daydone. for couples to show howwe much they this yearand so my shopping This time last year werecare snowed in and the country was in a state of emergency for each other. almost.This At can leastbe the weather isnít too bad, the moment andthe day shown by being taken foratdinner, spending fingers (and toes ) crossed itgifts. stays that way. of If you together or exchanging It is a token love.are like me you will letname the supermarkets take the strain ofknown the chopping The Valentines Day was originally as Saint and Valentines peeling. I love all the Xmas ready prepared stuff. Although Day named after the early Christian Martyr Saint I willValentine. be making thename maincomes coursefrom dish this as I have yet to findFebruary a The because it was shop14 bought Wellington thatdied beats mine, butwas I canheld do itonthe night that Saint Valentine and a feast this day to before ready tohim. pop in the oven. Saves so much time and energy remember and I get to enjoy do love hashing leftovers though, It has been the saidday. thatIthey are re unsure if this feast was to as letís face it.just Weone all buy as Christian though we are feeding an army. celebrate of the Martyrs or many. This year I will making dessert too as I hate If you arebegiven a gift on valentines Day ittrifle. means you have been given a “Valentine.” People giving Valentines sometimes think that they have to give a massive present that is really expensive but Beef Wellington 1 Large fillet thatbeef is not theorcase. Small personal items are more special than tenderloin any expensive one. Personal ones share a message to each which 1 large packet pre-rolled shows theof love and thought that has went into a present. Normal all butter puff pastry Valentines gifts include flowers, chocolates and cards. Sometimes 1 small mild onion thinking outside the box is very romantic. 1 medium tub of course pate Valentines Day has many symbols which help us identify this 6 large mushrooms finely romantic time such as hearts, doves and Cupid with his bow and chopped arrow. He is normally seen as having no clothes on and just carries 2 beaten abouteggs his bow and arrows. Cupid is known as the God of desire, affection and love. The whole point in his bow and arrow is so he Fry off beef until well browned and sealed all will overfallAllow to willthe shoot arrows of love at couples and they hopelessly and coolpassionately completely. Chop theWell mushrooms and onion veryhas finely and in love. so it is thought. Cupid been known fry off in a little coolwith completely. Spread somepeople to carry two butter. sets of Allow arrowsthe about him, ones that make patefall over the mushroom and onion mix over in the lovepastry. and theSpread other ones to make people hate. the pate. Place the beef at day the he edge on top ofhimself the mixwith andan roll. It was said that one scratched arrow of Place on an a baking withbut the pure join underneath. love he felt trap nothing passion andCut loveone all or thetwo time. This air vents theispastry. Brush theday beaten egg and bake for is whyinhe such an iconwith for the of Valentines. 30-35 min 170c. Until puffed and golden



Madeira sauce/ gravy 1 beef stock cube 1 glass of Madeira or sherry Butter

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas , and look forward to seeing you in the New year Love Susie xx Ps.. good luck to all the weans in their nativity plays and remember Santaís elves are always watching!! xx

Oh No 50!!!

Food for the soul

Recently featured in “Pick Me Up” Magazine And the Scottish Sun Is AvailableFor Readings Every Wednesday Day time & Thursday Evenings in Baillieston Glasgow £30 per reading To book call Anne on 07506723569 Visit or follow her on FB



Makeall up you the stock addto thedo wine sherry and cook until have is orcomplete the down crossword smooth and slightly thickened. Just before serving whisk in one below and or two knobs of coldsend to: Wee County News, 38 Primrose Street, Alloa, FK10 1JG *Terms & conditions apply Serve with vegetables of your choice. ACROSS 18. Large imposing zodiac (6) 1. Banquet (5) house (7) 4. Location (4) Fresh fruit flan Velocity (5)case 20. Peculiar (3) 5. Type of tree (3) 1 ready made4.sweet flan 21. Lukewarm (5) 6. Subtract (6) Strawberries 7. Golfing accessory (3) 8. Wild (7) 22. Part of the leg (5) 11. Security device (7) Kiwis 9. Fake (5) 12. Recluse (6) Mandarin segments 10. Long narrative DOWN 13. Part of the eye (6) 1 sachet of gelatine poem (4) 1. Festival (4) 16. Discover (4) Fencing 2. Amazing (7) 17. Not in action (4) Cut, slice and14. arrange thesword fruit (4) 15. Temperamental 3. Second sign of the 19. Short sleep (3) on the flan case. Make up the (5) gelatine as on the instructions and pour over. Allow to set completely and serve with soft whipped cream.




Happy 50th Dad Hope you have a fab day!!

Lots of love yer Wife Linda, John, Paula, Gemma, Kara, Isla-rose, Cian and Jack

Name: .................................................................. T:. ............................................ Address:.....................................................................................................................

We are on the prowl to find the Wee County’s dodgy parkers but we need your help! Unfortunately, we cannot do this campaign on our own – so please send in your dodgy parking pictures to weecounty@ Does one of your colleagues suffer from dodgyparkingitis? If so, take a picture of the evidence and send it to us! Don’t worry, all identities will be protected and vehicle registrations blanked out. This is all in the name of good fun, and in no way are we personally attacking any individual or group.

SUDOKU Answers on page 25



Friday 20.1.12

Book review: Great In Bed L

ovemaking, fooling around, hanky panky&hellip; whatever term you give it, the act of sleeping with another person can also be one of the root causes of much misery. It’s a sad situation that this new book hopes to help change. Whether you’re a 16-year-old filled with midpubescent desires, or a post-middle aged senior who still enjoys a roll in the hay, there’s no denying that sex can be stressful - and not just when there’s a new partner involved. The media has done its best to mystify modern day intercourse, filling our brains with unfeasible proportions and porn-fuelled lies of three-hour long marathon sessions. This means carnal paranoia is still an everyday issue, despite the perception of 21st century liberalism. Great In Bed is the latest guide looking to ease our (often unspoken) concerns about what happens in the sack. Professing to ‘cover everything you need to know to be brilliant in

bed every time’ this isn’t the first time such claims have been made. But, in this instance, it would appear the statement is grounded in slightly more fact than fiction, largely thanks to the pair of authors responsible for co-writing. Debby Herbenick is a research scientist, journalist, sex columnist, and author who’s best known for her work at Indiana University and The Kinsey Institute, a leading US centre for research into sex and gender. She writes for a number of leading publications, including the New York Times and The Guardian, and already has two acclaimed books on the shelves dealing with the subject of female sexuality. Of course this latest is equally interested in the male point of view, and so it makes sense to see Grant Stoddard sharing the cover credits here. A current contributing editor to Men’s Health and former sex columnist, his work for leading titles like New York Magazine, GQ and Glamour speaks volumes.

His memoir Working Stuff: The Misadventures of an Accidental Sexpert- was optioned to Paramount Vintage for possible film rights, while a scripted pilot deal with 20th Century Fox Television has also been signed; an impressive CV.Thanks to the mixed gender authors, Great In Bed boasts a unique format. Sections are divided into what ‘he thinks’ and what ‘she thinks’, with each offering male and female perspectives on what the two respective parties commonly need and want in the bedroom. The idea is to help build up confidence in both men and women, and in turn try to prevent any embarrassing moments from occurring. As anyone who has ever uttered the words ‘oh, sorry’ during foreplay or sex will know, there’s few more crushing apologies to make. With that in mind this new book should come in pretty useful for most people, even if they wouldn’t care to admit it. Full colour images and photography help to illustrate

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Baked Camembert E

njoy one of the best-known French cheeses in a delicious way, bursting with flavour and coated in breadcrumbs. Make sure the cheese is not too ripe and freeze before cooking to ensure the centre melts when baking. Serves 4



Age: 4 months L i ve s : A l l o a L i ke s : G e t t i n g h e r b e l l y r u b b e d D i s l i ke s : Va c u u m c l e a n e r To submit your pet please send a photo of your pet to weecounty@ or post your photo to The Wee County News, 38 Primrose Street, Alloa FK10 1JG with your name, your pets name, breed, age and his or her likes and dislikes. * although we will try, we cannot guarantee the return of any photos posted to us.

4 individual Camemberts or one large Camembert cut into approx 80g/3oz wedges, frozen for 1 hour. 25g plain flour 1 egg beaten with 1tbsp water 25g breadcrumbs 50ml sunflower oil raspberry coulis or cranberry sauce to garnish


1. Preheat oven to 200C/400F/ Gas Mark 6 2. Remove the Camembert from the freezer and carefully cut the white skin from the top, while leaving the bottom and sides in

tact. Coat well on all sides with the flour. 3. Dip the coated Camembert in the egg mix and coat with breadcrumbs, then repeat both steps. Pat well to help the crumbs stick, then place in the fridge for 30 minutes. 4. Heat the oil over a medium heat. Remove the cheeses from the fridge and fry lightly on each side until light golden brown - approximately 1-2 minutes. Make sure the cheese does not begin to melt. Remove and drain

excess oil on paper towels. 5. Place the lightly-browned cheeses on a lined baking tray and bake in the oven for 5-10 minutes or until the top is slightly puffed. 6. Serve immediately with a raspberry coulis or cranberry sauce.



Friday 20.1.12

ICT SERVICES MANAGER Job No: ALL/23025 Employer Reference: CLA0613 SOC Code: 1113 Wage ÂŁ45,633 - ÂŁ49,875 Hours 36 hours Location Alloa, Clackmannanshire FK10 Duration Permanent Date posted 13 January 2012 Closing date 26 January 2012 Pension details No details held Description Finance & Corporate Services Support Services - IT, ICT Service Manager. ÂŁ45,633 - ÂŁ49,875. Fixed Term Contract or Secondment Opportunity until July 2013 36 hours per week. A leader with expertise in a complex environment who can demonstrate delivery of excellent service to customers against a background of change and financial challenge is required. The. Council is going through a period of significant change with several critical projects underway. The provision and development of ICT services during this time should support and enhance the transformational change, delivering benefits to customers and the public. Should you have difficulty in accessing the documents and application form and wish to request a paper application pack please call 01259 452244 (24 hrs) and leave your details along with the reference number of the post. Reference - CLA0613 How to apply You can apply for this job by visiting fe/tpl_ScottishPortal01.asp?newms=j

j&id=119823&aid=11667Opens new window (unless Javascript disabled) and following the instructions on the webpage. Employer Clackmannanshire Council

Closing date 26 January 2012 Pension details No details held Description To support Autism Practitioners and Support Workers in the provision of a key-working service, through the development and implementation of care plans, based on individual assessment of needs and preferences of the service user. You will work closely and collaboratively with relevant agencies, developing close links in the local community, promoting the service and the organisation, coordinating finances within set budgets, recruitment and selection of staff, service development and strategic planning. Please forward an application form to recruitment@scottishautism. org or by post to The HR Department, Scottish Autism, Hilton House, Alloa Business Park, Whins Road, Alloa, FK10 3SA. Successful applicants are required to provide an enhanced disclosure. Disclosure expense will be met by employer. To download an application form or for more information please visit our website at www.scottishautism. orgOpens new window (unless Javascript disabled) How to apply You can apply for this job by visiting www.scottishautism.orgOpens new window (unless Javascript disabled) and following the instructions on the webpage. Employer Scottish Autism

TRAINEE DEPUTY MANAGER Job No: ALL/23027 SOC Code: 7111 Wage Negotiable depending on experience Hours 39 hours, 5 days from MondaySaturday between 8am & 8pm Location Alloa, Clackmannanshire FK10 Duration Permanent Date posted 16 January 2012 Pension details Pension available Description Must have previous management experience and hold a full driving licence. Duties to include assisting the manager with the day to day running of the store and other associated duties as required. How to apply You can apply for this job by sending a CV/written application to Shona Burnet at Brighthouse, Shillinghill, Alloa, Scotland, FK10 1JX or to alloa@ Employer Brighthouse SENIOR AUTISM PRACTITIONER Job No: ALL/23026 Employer Reference: SA/795 SOC Code: 6115 Wage ÂŁ20,947 - ÂŁ24,686 Hours Flexible shift pattern Location Fife, Clackmannanshire FK10 Duration Permanent Date posted 13 January 2012


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ELECTRICIAN Job No: ALL/22985 SOC Code: 5241 Wage NEGOTIABLE DEPENDING ON EXPERIENCE Hours 35 HOURS PER WEEK, MONDAY TO FRIDAY 9AM - 5PM Location ALLOA, CLACKMANNANSHIRE FK10 Duration Temporary Date posted 20 December 2011 Pension details No details held Description We are looking for a 17th Edition Electrician with previous experience for routing maintenance repairs, fault finding, test and expecting. Full clean driving licence is essential. This is temporary for 3 months with the possibility of going permanent for the right applicant. How to apply For further details about job reference ALL/22985, please telephone Jobseeker Direct on 0845 6060 234. Lines are open 8.00am - 6.00pm weekdays only. All calls are charged at local rate. Call charges may be different if you call from a mobile phone. Alternatively, visit your local Jobcentre Plus Office and use the customer access phones provided to call Jobseeker Direct. The textphone service for deaf and hearing-impaired people is 0845 6055 255. FISH FRYER

Job No: ALL/22986 SOC Code: 5434 Wage MEETS NAT MIN WAGE DEPENDENT ON EXPERIENCE Hours 20+ OVER 7 DAYS BETWEEN 10AM AND 9.30PM Location ALVA, CLACKMANNANSHIRE FK12 Duration Permanent Date posted 21 December 2011 Pension details No details held Description Previous experience is essential. Duties will be all aspects of frying within a chip shop/cafe. How to apply You can apply for this job by telephoning 0125 9769747 ext 0 and asking for Karina Mc Clelland. Employer Bolliniâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s COMMIS CHEF Job No: ALL/22996 SOC Code: 5434 Wage Exceeds Nat Min Wage Hours 40 PER WEEK, 5 DAYS OUT OF 7 BETWEEN 8AM-9PM Location TILLICOULTRY, CLACKMANNANSHIRE FK13 Duration Permanent Date posted 28 December 2011 Closing date 11 January 2012 Pension details No details held Description Fully qualified Commis Chef required. Must have Food and Hygiene certificates. Must be able to work under own initiative. Duties include cooking, general housekeeping of the kitchen, stock ordering, stock checks and any other related tasks. Please email your current CV and a covering letter to the employer How to apply You can apply for this job by sending a CV/written application to David Rutherford at Bridge Inn, info@ Employer Bridge Inn ACTUATOR TECH Job No: ALL/23009 Employer Reference: Actuator technician SOC Code: 5241 Wage Exceeds National Minimum Wage Hours 70 hours over 7 days Location Alloa FK10 Duration Temporary Date posted 10 January 2012 Closing date 31 March 2012 Pension details No details held Description Ensure understanding and compliance with permit to work requirements Attend pre-job briefs given by the Supervisor to ensure tasks are clearly understood Carry out Point of Work Risk assessment prior to



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Are you looking to make the next move that will put your career on the right path? This is an outstanding opportunity to join an expanding newspaper group. You will be part of a dynamic and friendly sales environment, where rewards reflect effort. We will expect you to have drive, determination and flair. A lack of sales experience is not an issue as we pride ourselves on our excellent in-house training. But we will expect you to have excellent communication skills and the ability to work on your own initiative. In return, we will give you a first class salary and excellent bonus potential. If you think you have what it takes, contact us today.


Telesales Executive

Hours 42 A WEEK, MONDAY TO FRIDAY BETWEEN 7.30AM AND 4.30PM Location TILLICOULTRY, CLACKMANNANSHIRE FK13 Duration Permanent Date posted 20 December 2011 Pension details No details held Description Must be time served and have written qualifications. Good communications and listening skills are essential.

Previous supervisory experience would be an advantage. Must be able to motivate, take charge, arrange and supervise and accurately estimate works including HSC requirements. Must be capable of recording and collating information and accuratelyestimate materials and order same from suppliers. A full clean driving licence is essential. A basic disclosure Scotland is an advantage. Duties include supervising and working as part of a team carrying out various slating and roofing / engineering contracts. How to apply For further details about job reference ALL/22984, please telephone Jobseeker Direct on 0845 6060 234. Lines are open 8.00am 6.00pm weekdays only. All calls are charged at local rate. Call charges may be different if you call from a mobile phone. Alternatively, visit your local Jobcentre Plus Office and use the customer access phones provided to call Jobseeker Direct. The textphone service for deaf and hearing-impaired people is 0845 6055 255.


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Reporter/Trainee Reporter A

re you looking to make the next move that will put your career on the right path? Or perhaps hoping to take that first step into the world of journalism? Hub Media is looking for a talented reporter / trainee reporter to join its team working on the Wee County News, based in Alloa. The successful applicant will be adaptable and able to cover news and sport while bringing exciting ideas to the table. We are looking for an ambitious reporter or graduate with a qualification in journalism, shorthand and knowledge of Scots Law. The ideal candidate will have an excellent news sense and the ability to remain calm while working to a strict deadline.

This is an opportunity to join an expanding company who have a strong portfolio of newspapers across South Lanarkshire, Perthshire and Clackmannanshire. Three papers will be launched from the Alloa office in the very near future and you will play a key part in shaping their content. A car owner would be preferred. Send written applications, including CV and clippings to: Hub Media Ltd Scott Mochar Ellismuir House, Ellismuir Way, Uddingston G71 5PW Tel: 01698 803909 Email:

weecounty recruitment commencing tasks Carry out Actuator tasks in full compliance with Weir and customer HSEQ procedures, including compliance with Weir 5 Key Safety Values.Refer problems clarifications whilst carrying out the works to the appropriate Supervisor.Complete necessary documentation accurately and in a timely manner. Served a recognised electrical mechanical engineering apprenticeship or 5 years on the job experience with regular appraisals assessments to demonstrate competence.Client Contractor National Safety Group Safety Passport.Pay is as per the NAECI blue book, this role would be a temporary role and would be paid at Grade 5. How to apply You can apply for this job by sending a CV/written application to Kevin Devine at Weir Services Limited, The Harlands, New Alloa, Alloa, Clackmananshire, FK10 1TB. Employer Weir Services Limited GARAGE WORKSHOP CONTROLLER Job No: ALL/23012 SOC Code: 5231 Wage Exceeds Nat Min Wage Hours 46 hours per week Location ALLOA, CLACKMANNANSHIRE FK10 Duration Permanent Date posted 10 January 2012 Closing date 07 February 2012 Pension details No details held Description Immediate start available. Must have good knowledge in the Fast Fit industry, and have a knowledge of the day to day running of a garage. Duties include dealing with telephone calls and members of the public. Tyre experience would be an advantage. How to apply You can apply for this job by sending a CV/written application to David Boyce at J K Tyres and Autocentre Ltd, Employer J K Tyres and Autocentre Ltd TRANSCRIPTIONIST/AUDIO TYPIST Job No: ALL/23003 SOC Code: 4217 Wage £6.08 TO £7.00 PER HOUR Hours MONDAY TO FRIDAY various hours/ part time 8AM AND 9PM Location ALLOA, CLACKMANNANSHIRE FK10 Duration Permanent Date posted 05 January 2012 Pension details No details held Description We have an opportunity to join our established team in the centre of Alloa, which is key to the first class service our clients receive. Primary duties To produce neat, well presented files and analogue documents on a word processor from digital sound tapes with a typing speed of approximately 60 wpm To provide a professional service to clients ensuring confidentiality is adhered to at all times to adhere to strict deadlines for daily workload. How to apply You can apply for this job by sending a CV/written application to Kirsty Lang at Intelligent Office UK, Kilncraigs, Greenside Street, Alloa, Clackmannanshire, FK10 1EB or to Employer Intelligent Office UK WORKFLOW CO-ORDINATOR Job No: ALL/23005 SOC Code: 4150 Wage £13.5K PER ANNUM Hours 37.5, 5 DAYS OVER 7, FLEXIBLE

BETWEEN 7AM & 12PM Location ALLOA, CLACKMANNANSHIRE FK10 Duration Permanent Date posted 09 January 2012 Pension details No details held Description Must be able to type at least 60 wpm and have excellent knowledge of Microsoft Excel. Some supervisory experience and/or knowledge of the legal sector would be an advantage. Responsibilities include monitoring the main office to achieve daily output and quality targets, typing, data entry collation of statistics, cover for typists and shift leaders as required and all other associated tasks as required. This appointment will require you to be flexible, committed, energetic, a team player, customer focused, quality service oriented and have great attention to detail. You should also have the ability to multi task, have great communication skills and be IT literate. In return we offer plenty of opportunity to learn new skills, working for a company that offers great opportunities for progression. How to apply You can apply for this job by sending a CV/written application to Kirsty Lang at Intelligent Office UK, Kilncraigs, Greenside Street, Alloa, Clackmannanshire, FK10 1EB or to Employer Intelligent Office UK RETAIL ASSISTANT Job No: ALL/23015 SOC Code: 7111 Wage £5.25 (17 OR UNDER) £6.18 (18 OR OVER) PER HOUR Hours 17 PER WEEK, 5 DAYS OVER 7 BETWEEN 7AM-5PM Location Dollar, Clackmannanshire FK14 Duration Permanent Date posted 10 January 2012 Pension details No details held Description Duties involve serving customers, operating a till, handling cash, making filled rolls, baking savouries and light cleaning duties. Hours to be worked on a flexible basis as the bakery will be open 7 days a week. Training is provided. Must ensure highest standards of health and safety and hygiene. Excellent career prospects and opportunities to progress into management. We are looking for the following qualities: Commitment, loyalty, enthusiasm, energy, ambition and a passion for customer service. How to apply You can apply for this job by obtaining a Jobcentre Plus application form by selecting this link uk/docs/es5.pdfOpens new window (unless Javascript disabled). Alternatively you can request an application form from any Jobcentre Plus Office and returning it to Mrs Lynn Hunter at Stephens Bakery, Unit 21 Dunfermline Business P, Primrose Lane, Rosyth, Fife, KY11 2RN. Employer Stephens Bakery CALL CENTRE AGENT Job No: ALL/22970 Employer Reference: SO0178 SOC Code: 7211 Wage £10.40 Per Hour + Weekend, Evening, Night Enhancemen Hours 36 hours per week, Location Alloa, Clackmannanshire FK10 Duration Permanent Date posted 14 December 2011 Closing date 20 January 2012

Friday 20.1.12

Pension details No details held Description - Services to PeopleTelecare/MECS Responders (Relief) hours as required MECS Responders work as part of a larger team of staff who provide a quality care service, to service users in their own home. You will be required to work on your own initiative responding to calls for assistance from service users - tasks will include personal care, assisting people who have fallen, and assessing emergency situations. You will work co-operatively with the service’s contact centre to deal with all calls appropriately and timorously. You must be available to work both day and evening shifts within a rota managed by the Team Leader Should you have difficulty in accessing the documents and application form and wish to request a paper application pack please call 01259 452234 (24 hrs) and leave your details along with the reference number of the post. :. How to apply-You can apply for this job by visiting fe/tpl_ScottishPortal01.asp?newms=j j&id=118503&aid=11667Opens new window (unless Javascript disabled) and following the instructions on the webpage. Employer Clackmannanshire Council

your local Jobcentre Plus Office and use the customer access phones provided to call Jobseeker Direct. The textphone service for deaf and hearing-impaired people is 0845 6055 255. BOOTS55871-CUSTOMER ASSISTANT Job No: ALL/23030 SOC Code: 7111 Wage MEETS NATIONAL MINIMUM WAGE Hours DAYS AND HOURS TO BE DISCUSSED Location Alloa, Clackmannanshire FK10 Duration Permanent Date posted 17 January 2012 Pension details No details held Description Whether it is helping customers, serving on the tills, or restocking shelves, you’ll deliver a first class shopping experience to all of our customers. You will genuinely want to help people. Be interested in how other people may be feeling. Be sociable, enjoy spending time with others and look for opportunities to build relationships with people. Be comfortable in new situations and meeting new people. Remain calm under pressure, and be optimistic and positive. Be keen to ask questions to understand the customers’ needs and to learn about new products, promotions and offers. Be reliable and conscientious, completing tasks and not leaving it for others. Enjoy sharing knowledge to help sales. You’ll enjoy spending time with our customers; listening and demonstrating genuine care and interest in their needs. Apply online: new


window (unless Javascript disabled) with ref: BOOTS55871. Do not call into Store for applications. This job may close early if there is a high response. How to apply You can apply for this job by visiting new window (unless Javascript disabled) and following the instructions on the webpage. Employer Boots-UK SALON ASSISTANT Job No: ALL/23020 Employer Reference: Alloa/02 SOC Code: 7111 Wage MEETS NATIONAL MINIMUM WAGE Hours EVENING/WEEKEND Location ALLOA, CLACKMANNANSHIRE FK10 Duration Permanent Date posted 11 January 2012 Closing date 01 February 2012 Pension details No details held Description We are currently looking to recruit staff for our new salon opening in February. Applicants should be of smart appearance, reliable and able to work on own initiative. No experience is necessary as training can be provided however previous customer service or salon experience would be an advantage. Duties will include customer service, cash handling and general house keeping. How to apply You can apply for this job by sending a CV/written application to Lisa Rafferty at Sun Shack, Employer Sun Shack

ASSISTANT MANAGER/MANAGERESS Job No: ALL/22954 SOC Code: 1163 Wage £6.50 PER HOUR Hours 30 HOURS PER WEEK,4-5 DAYS FROM7,10.00AM-6.00PM Location TILLICOULTRY, CLACKMANNANSHIRE FK13 Duration Permanent Date posted 06 December 2011 Pension details No details held Due to expansion and increased workload we require experienced IFAs to Description join our team. Working with a broad level of clients ranging from corporate Previous experience in to HNW individuals, you will provide tailored financial planning to meet those a similar role essential. Duties needs of our clients. Advice will be given to clients on the whole spectrum of include all aspects of assisting in planning requirements. the day to day running of a busy home store Successful candidate will also have experience in managing introducers. including cash handling, dealing with customers, Employed and Self Employed positions available and will see candidates planning staff rota’s and other working to set quarterly targets. Rewards for managing and increasing funds duties. How to apply under management alongside the generation of new business are given. For further details about job reference ALL/22954, Successful advisors will see on target income in excess of £100,000. please telephone Jobseeker Direct on 0845 6060 234. Lines are open 8.00am 6.00pm weekdays only. All calls are charged at local rate. Call charges Urban Black Associates, Lomond Suite, Ellismuir House, Ellismuir Way, may be different if you call from Tannochside Park, Uddingston, G71 5PW. a mobile phone. Urban Black Associates is a trading style of Urban Black Ltd. Alternatively, visit


OTE £100,000

Contact us at

or on 0808 108 1186 for further information.


Friday 20.1.12

Employee theft

business weecounty

Employee Stealing Company Products:


’m worried that an employee is stealing money and products. Can I just fire them based on my inventories?

Rhonda Brymer, consultant at Peninsula, responds:


ou should not rush into firing an employee based on a loss of inventory alone; a Tribunal would consider this a harsh reaction to an incident that has not been fully investigated. You must have full and clear proof and investigate each incident thoroughly. In the case of stealing, putting in place preventative measures will usually solve the problem. You must first look at the terms and conditions of employment. These must clearly state that honesty of

all staff is required. It may even include factors such as, if you know that somebody else is stealing then you must report it. Failure to report means action could be taken against you were it to be found that you knew something. Action up to and including dismissal could therefore be taken against both employees. All employees need to know just how seriously you treat the problem. Your terms must set out what is required. In a situation such as this, where

you have suspicions, you have to decide whether it might be sufficient to put a reminder on notice boards of the requirements to be honest. You may wish to say that there have been one or two incidents of suspected theft but they may just be losses and that if an individual is caught stealing, they will be dismissed, and even prosecuted. I do not know what is in your terms and conditions of employment, for example do you have a right to search people? If you know when

articles are going missing, and at what times of day, you might want to carry out a snap search at that particular time. If you are not sure when the items are going missing then carrying out such a search, especially if you have not done one for quite a while, will indicate that you have suspicions and may cause the thief to refrain from stealing for a while. As an alternative you might wish to set up a hidden camera and to mark items to provide an audit trail. This is a sensitive area

and would require some considerable expertise in the placing of cameras, etc., to the extent that it would probably be advisable to use a professional in this field.

If you need any more advice regarding this topic please contact Rhonda Brymer on 0779 159 4463 or via email, Rhonda.Brymer@

Overdraft errors still costing a packet B

ank customers making a one-off mistake with their overdraft pay an average £44.98 for the error, according to independent financial advice site MoneyExpert. com. Fees are higher still for around 30 per cent of all current account owners, as they face a shocking fee of £60 or more for straying beyond their borrowing limit. Such high fees have faced a barrage of criticism in recent years. Overdraft fees are contrasted with a capped £12 for defaulting on a credit card - a consequence of an investigation by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT). While bank charges are next in the OFT’s sights and are indeed up before a court, is warning customers not to expect them to fall any time soon. The teat case deciding whether the charges are fair will not be resolved until 2008 at the earliest. Sean Gardner, chief executive of MoneyExpert. com, says, “Some people might think that their bank charges are on the verge of being reduced or scrapped following the recent OFT investigation and the glut of

claims, but the court case continues and the charges remain. “When you could get stung for more than £60 just for going beyond your overdraft limit, people need to pay careful attention to their spending and the arrangement they currently have with their bank. Few don’t charge at all so, you should talk to your bank about a more realistic limit if you’re incurring fees regularly. You can also query charges when they are imposed.” Most banks charge customers for going beyond their overdraft limit in two stages. The first fee is for either giving the credit to allow a payment to go through or to charge for a bounced payment. The second is a one-off charge, normally called an arrangement fee or borrowing fee, which is applied to around half of all current account users who exceed their overdraft facility. The average unpaid item fee is £31.38 and the average one-off charge is £13.60, adding up to an average overdraft charge of £44.98. While some

Coining it in - bank charges probably won’t come down for some time yet.

Proven to lower cholesterol packaged accounts do not charge fees at all for arranging overdrafts, about half of all accounts charge above the average amount. The highest unauthorised overdraft fee is £67, while the lowest is £25. The average APR on unauthorised overdrafts is 25.57 per cent. Gardner adds, “Our switching index has consistently shown that current accounts are the key switching battleground. With fees as high as they are,

and with uncertainty around charges likely to remain well into next year, we anticipate an even greater number of people will swap banks in the coming months.” Five years ago, the process of switching banks could take as long as 12 weeks, but today it takes less than two weeks. The Banking Code states that current account providers have to provide details of standing orders and direct debits within three working days of a switching

request from a new bank. The new bank has to provide details of the new account within 10 working days after approving an application. With price comparison websites such as making it easier than ever to get the best deal, there’s no excuse to sit around waiting for overdraft fees to come down. You could be paying much less for your financial mistakes in less than two weeks.

90 tablets £12.95 Plant Sterols 750mg High cholesterol is a risk factor in the development of coronary heart disease and the European Commission has recently confirmed that plant sterols are proven to lower cholesterol. FREEPHONE 0800 73 123 77

weecounty lifestyle

The Pressure Is On Feeling stressed? Maybe a bit of alternative pressure could solve your problem.


Shiatsu can be very helpful during the different stages of pregnancy.

hiatsu has been helping people for thousands of years and is one of the growing trends of alternative therapies in the UK. Shiatsu is an oriental therapy that evolved from a tradition of healing art stretching back through the millennia. It uses a combination of pressure and assisted stretching techniques in treatments. This stimulates the circulation and the flow of lymphatic fluid, releasing toxins and deep-seated tensions from the muscles, stimulating the hormonal system and the immune system and acting on the nervous system. This allows the recipient to relax deeply and to get in touch with his or her own healing power. Shiatsu can help alleviate stress and fatigue, increase circulation of the blood and lymph, reduce blood pressure and muscle stiffness and increase vitality and stamina. It originated in China at least 2,000 years ago, when the earliest accounts gave the causes of ailments and the remedies that could be effected through a change of diet and way of life. The use of massage and acupuncture was also recommended. Acupuncture, massage and herbal medicine evolved side by side to treat the range of diseases. The traditional massage of ancient China was

Friday 20.1.12 known as anma and found its way to Japan to be adopted and adapted by the Japanese. The therapy that is known today as shiatsu has gradually evolved with time from anma under influences from both east and west. Shiatsu can be especially useful for postural problems, musculo-skeletal problems and any stress-related illnesses, including emotional problems. It can be very helpful during the different stages of pregnancy and for sufferers of multiple sclerosis. It would be wrong to say that shiatsu in itself can cure all these ailments, but in some cases it can help dramatically. In 1986, car factory workers were screened in a study to exclude any with organic disease or infection and 142 workers with chronic lumbar pain were treated with acupressure daily for 21 days on points along the spine, back and front of legs. A marked improvement was found in 29 per cent of patients and 68 per cent were cured. Acupressure was used to treat morning sickness on 350 women attending the Royal Maternity Hospital in Belfast in 1988. They were randomly allocated to three groups and the severity of morning sickness was recorded daily for four days. The treatment group pressed a wrist acupuncture point, whereas the second group used a pretend acupressure point and the control group had no treatment. There was much less sickness in the genuine and dummy pressure groups compared with the control group and no adverse side effects were reported in the patients’ pregnancies. The immediate effect of


treatments differs with each individual. A sense of wellbeing is common. Because of the deep relaxation that usually occurs and the stimulus to the major body systems, you may have some healing reactions. But there can be a short-lived downside to receiving this sort of treatment. Some people feel cold or flu-like symptoms, aches and pains or headaches after the first treatment. These symptoms will usually only last for a day or so and subside with each subsequent treatment. If these symptoms persist you should consult a qualified physician immediately. In general, any such effects you may experience are positive signs from your body telling you it is making an attempt to correct its own condition in a natural way.

The Sunshine Vitamin

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Millions of mums forced back to work G

oing back to work after having a baby used to be a choice for most women. However, with household costs at a premium and the mountain of personal debt increasing, more families than ever are dependent on two salaries to make ends meet. Going back to work is now a necessity for many mums. Research by financial services company Scottish Widows reveals that the cost of running a home in the UK means almost half (44 per cent) of the nation’s average households require more than one breadwinner to maintain an acceptable standard of living. When children are born into these households, the need for two incomes increases, with one in two households with dependent children relying on both partners working. Scottish Widows’ interim protection market director, Richard Jones, says, “This reliance on two incomes to buy and run the family home means millions of households are effectively doubling the risk of financial hardship should

one of breadwinners become unable to work.” The need for both partners in a household to work may be influenced by the rise in consumer credit. The report shows 47 per cent of Britons have a mortgage, 60 per cent have secured or unsecured loans, overdrafts or finance agreements and a similar number, 63 per cent, have credit card or store card debt. Those with children have, as would be expected, higher levels of debt on both loans and credit cards than those without children to support. Households with no children have an average mortgage loan of £66,000 compared with £83,800 for a household with two dependent children. Combined with borrowing, the average household with two dependent children is £100,600 in debt: £19,100 more than the average household with no children. “Our report reveals that the mixture of relatively low interest rates and high job security means borrowing has been an attractive option in recent years,” Jones says.

“The problem is that servicing this debt eats into our take-home pay and exposes us to financial hardship should we be unable to work.” The report also shows that many households are without savings tucked away for a rainy day. Over one in four (27 per cent) average homeowners have no savings at all and a further 25 per cent have £3,000 or less. As with debt, families are in an even worse position: 32 per cent of families with three dependent children have no savings and 23 per cent have £3,000 or less. With higher mortgages and higher debts burdening parents with young children, it is unsurprising that millions of mums are pushed to go back to work. Without family to help look after the kids, these families also face the burden of paying for childcare and the costs of raising their children on top of their often-crippling financial commitments. It’s never been cheap to raise a family, but today’s young families are finding it harder than ever.

Driven by debt - most mums are now forced to work to make ends meet.



Friday 20.1.12


Crunch time for first time buyers

The credit crunch is squeezing first-time buyers out of the market but is it all doom and gloom?


he credit crunch has taken a firm hold of the housing market, knocking the confidence of first-time buyers and bringing sales down to a sluggish trickle. But with the number of available properties

rising and the lowest interest rates for years, could there be a silver lining for first-time buyers who are feeling the crunch? The fact that more than half of Britain’s working population cannot afford to buy a home

underlines the difficulties faced by first-time buyers trying to get on the property ladder today. It’s little wonder when you consider the fact that the average house costs £118,500 and the average salary is £25,000,

according to Nationwide Building Society. On a more positive note, the number of houses available rose, giving more choice to potential buyers but the number of sales agreed remained sluggish, indicating consumer confidence is uncertain. It seems first time buyers aren’t giving up hope, though, as the number of buyers on books has increased, showing demand is still out there. Stewart Lilly, president of the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA), says: “The global credit crunch, the squeeze on mortgage approvals and the media cloud that currently surrounds the property market are undoubtedly having effect on individuals’ decisions to buy or sell. There is a constant need to remind people that the underlying factors that hold up the property market - low unemployment, historically low interest rates and a pent-up demand for houses still exist.” He insists its not all doom and gloom for first-time buyers as a number of NAEA agents across the UK are still reporting stable property markets, with many of their branches making steady sales. “There are indications that first-time buyers have dropped their market share once again,

showing a ‘wait and see’ attitude has been adopted. Over the next few months it is imperative that the shackles are released on the mortgage market so consumer confidence can be rebuilt, allowing the market to stabilise,” he says. However, there is no denying that the current economic climate is piling the pressure on a majority of buyers and first-timers have really felt the impact. Their market share dropped from 11.7 per cent in February to 8.3 per cent in March. This is the lowest figure reported since April 2006 when their market share plummeted to 7.9 per cent. It’s hardly surprising that buyers are feeling skittish about purchasing a new home when mortgage lenders are clamping down on offering fixed rates and 100 per cent mortgages, forcing first-time buyers off the property ladder. This added pressure is clearly making new buyers more cautious about purchasing a home as the average number of viewings before a sale is secured actually rose from 13 in February to 14 in March 2008. This consumer caution is also reflected in the time taken to sell a property, with an average of 22 weeks reported in March compared with just over 20 weeks in February.

But despite all this doom and gloom there are some pluses to being a first-time buyer: interest rates are at their lowest for more than 30 years, lenders are competing strongly for your custom, and you won’t be part of a chain, which will make you more appealing to home sellers.

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weecounty motors

Friday 20.1.12



The Mazda 2-something for everyone M

azda claim that sport cars don’t come any cuter than the Mazda 2. And in my opinion, they are right.

I suspect that boy racers will not be forming an orderly queue at their local Mazda dealership.

Sister car to the Ford Fiesta, this is a supermini with longevity. Mazda’s nipping and tucking for the 2011 model has kept it as an excellent competitor in the motoring industry, with low costs and relatively slow depreciation.

Ride and Handling


The Mazda 2 is an extremely light car and is getting lighter. Mazda are now using ‘gram technology’ which allows them to double check for anything that can have weight cut from the car whilst keeping its excellent safety standard and dynamic drive. It is an economic drive too, with low fuel consumption and a diesel option for avoiding the rise in petrol costs. The usual comparison sprint to 62mph takes the little Mazda just over 10 seconds and it will run to a top speed of around 117mph. For what it is, whilst ‘sporty’ PUZZLE ANSWERS from page 18


One problem that has been identified with Mazda’s refining is the loss of soundproofing. While some may find the noise of the engine boisterous just as many will enjoy the purr – particularly if you opt for the £400 option of sports exhaust system. Ride comfort has been improved by a revamp of the

suspension system which lessons any rear discomfort. The new 2011 Mazda 2 offers a four speed automatic option with the 1.5 petrol engine which will mean that gear shifts are even smoother. The little Mazda 2 does well on twisting country roads due to its nimble design and is easy to park in city streets.

CROSSWORD ANSWERS for last weeks Crossword competition answers see page 7

How Practical?

The roof line is quite low and may lead to some minor problems but inside the car

Price: from £12,940 Engine: 1498cc Performance: 0-62 10.7 secs Power: 102bhp Torque: 133NM@ 4000prm Economy: 37.2 – 58.9


The Mazda 2 has excellent child protection as well as being exceptionally safe for adults. In fact Euro NCAP awarded it a five-star adult safety score when installed

with side and curtain airbags. The Mazda 2 does come with anti-lock brakes with electronic brake-force distribution and emergency brake assist all of which increase safety and improve control. The Mazda Advanced Impact Distribution and Absorption System protects the occupants in the event of a crash by dispersing the force.


As you would expect, Mazda do offer a huge

CO2: 135g/km range of modifications for the Mazda 2. The interior, exterior, wheels and suspension, audio and hands fee kits all can be changed. The best of which are welcome illumination, which lights the front foot room with red LED bulbs creating a nice effect, the rear roof spoiler and the front and rear parking sensor. As well as many extra gadgets such as a baby care mirror, cool and warm box, boot light Mazda offer Auto Sock Winter traction aids which could prove extremely useful in the winter weather we have been experiencing. It’s a quietly practical with a lot of youthful style. In my view, the facelift/ revised Mazda 2 is a car that can seriously compete on price, performance, safety and has a huge range of gadgets and accessories to make it personal to the driver. It also has a Which? Best Buy and is a good fun car- perfect for new divers, families and commuters. The Mazda 2 as something for everyone to enjoy and is the kind of car you can rely on to work to a high standard, keep costs down and look good.

rices Top P Paid

David Morton Ltd

Cars - Vans - All Scrap Metal

PETROL PRICES UNLEADED Tesco - Alloa - 129.9 Morrisons - Alloa - 129.9 ASDA - Alloa - 130.7 Highest - 135.9


is surprisingly roomy and comfortable. It would be a perfect family car with three seats in the back with plenty of room for children and at a stretch three adults holding their breath. Viability is high and parking is made simple in urban situations because of how compact the Mazda 2 is, just the perfect size to fit snugly in tight spaces.

We come to you, home or office, when it suits you.

DIESEL Tesco - Alloa - 137.9 Morrisons - Alloa - 137.9 ASDA - Alloa - 138.7 Highest - 144.9

Source: Prices correct at time of print.

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Friday 20.1.12



1ST ROUND RESULTS Alva Gc 4 - 0 Upstairs A, Red Lion B 1 - 3 Johnstone, Abercromby A 1 - 3 Oakwood Lounge, Star A 3 - 2 Star B, Oakwood B 3 - 1 Peppes, Abercromby B 0 - 3 Gartmorn, The 1/4 Finals will be played this Friday Jan 20th Alva Gc V Johnstone, Oakwood Lounge V Star A, Oakwood B V Gartmorn, Red Lion A V Oakwood A. The semi finals & final will be held in The Gartmorn on Fri Feb 10th.



The Gents Prelims will be held in the Abercromby & Johnstone on Friday Jan 27th. With the Ladies & Gents finals being held in the Red Lion on Friday Feb. All players please be in venues for 7.15pm

ALLOA MASTERS FINALS - sponsored by GH Taxis

The Alloa Masters will be held in Alloa town hall on Friday August 17th. Top Pro Players Gary Anderson Ted Hankey, Paul Nicolson & Darryl Fitton will take to the stage against 4 local qualifiers for the Masters Title. Tables & Tickets are now going very fast Contact Davie Hanson to book Tel 07872078715


The League & County now have a new Facebook page please look up Clackmannan County Darts for all the latest news




here is a list and menus up for the valentine’s dinner on the 11th of Feb. Please append your names asap. The clubs AGM this year will be held on Feb the 19th @ 11am all members are requested to attend. Poker is still on every Friday. Please support your club.




Ladies in top form C

entral Athletic Club’s female athletes took the plaudits at the final match of the East of Scotland Cross Country League, winning the Senior Womens Championship title, coming second in both Under 11 and Under 13 Girls and third in the Under 15/17 category. This meant Central’s overall female team won the League’s Donachie Cup for the first time. Kerry McPhee has taken part in each of the three matches and again she was fighting for the lead in the Senior Women’s race over 6 kilometres of the humps and hollows alongthe Broxburn skyline course. She had to be happy with a second place in 21min 30secs, ably backed up by Jennifer Emsley another ever-present in the team this year with another good run in sixth place (22:11). Just behind her was hill running specialist Catriona Buchanan with her debut cross-country run for the season, making the all important contribution to team points with seventh place in 22:17. Hazel Dean had a much improved run as she came home in 20th place (24:20), with Isla Campbell 36th (25:32), Shona Aitken 39th (25:39), Jane Waterhouse 53rd (26:45) and Shona Buchanan 79th (28:55). The Under 17 Men also contested this race and here San Fraser was Central’s top runner, covering the course in a steady 22min 47secs for 14th while Lewis Hetman also stuck in well to cover the course in 24.38 in 20th. The Under 11 Girls and Boys faced a 1.5 kilometre challenge and the Under 11 Girls produced another great team performance taking second team placing on the day, with Jennifer Walls coming third in 7:48, Sian Scott –Angell 11th with 8:35, Sky Henderson 14th with 8:49 and Charlie Gallacher 29th in exactly 10 minutes. The Under 11 Boys saw Thomas Hanson as the first Central boy in 18th (7min 17secs), a stride ahead of Comhnall Ferguson in 19th, (also 7.17); Sandy Holl came through well in 31st (7.24), with Jonathon Hanson (44th, 9.01) and Thomas Robertson (52nd, 9.19) also running strongly. The Under 13 Girls team also made a major contribution to overall female team victory, again taking second place on the day in their age group. Katie Gallagher was fifth with 9:57,

Evie, her sister, just behind in tenth (10:12). Eilidh Russell had another strong run for 17th in 10:57 with Eleanor Hanson also well up in the field in 32nd (11:57). The Under 13 Boys race over the same 2.5 kilometre course saw Matthew Crawford again underlining his progress with third place in the Under 13 Boys race 8min 48secs) backed up by good efforts from Anthony Quin 18th (9.40) and Jamie Price (37th, 10.34). In the combined Under 15 Girls/17 Womens race, over 4 kilometres Emily Greenan showed she is going from strength to strength in her running and came in confidently in sixth place on 16min 13secs, followed by Eilidh MacCorquodale in tenth (16:41), Roisin Bonucchi (30th,19:14), Amy McCabe (35th, 19:51) and Alanna Henderson (39th, 21:15) who have all made telling contributions throughout the season. The Under 15 Boys tackled the same course and here it was Cameron Harris who caught the eye in tenth (15.07) as he was chased into the finish by Sam Davidson (twelfth, 15.08) and Aidan Cameron (13th, 15.22). Kieran Potter (16th, 15.47), Iain Davies (19h, 15.57), Stuart McKinney (24th, 16.19), Gary MacFarlane (33rd, 17.40) and Gordon Beattie (39th, 21.09) all finished well with Central’s Under 15 Boys Team taking third place on the day, ensuring third place for the Season.

Hot competition: Ross Houston and Alex Hendry tussle with the leading group, before Alex puts his foot down to take the lead Alex Hendry has been so close to victory in recent races and here showed maturity to take the lead in the Senior Mens 9 kilometre Race after 2 laps of 3 and extend his advantage to the line to win in 28min 21secs from a quality field. Ross Houston continued his quality form to come home fourth (28.42) with Lewis Millar (ninth, 29.24), Under 20 Scott Green (twelfth, 29.38), Andrew Butchart (13th, 29.43), and Michael Wright (14th, 29.44) closing in well to ensure Central won the team race on the day. Closing in well were Will Hensman (57, 33.18) and Phil Williams (102, 35.13) while veterans, Liam McCabe (116, 36.04) and Hugh Buchanan (118, 36.05) battled it out together throughout. Jonathon Barlow (123, 36.42) and Under 20, David Lindsay (36.45) also came in close together while Alan Gall (183, 40.15), Cameron Campbell (192, 41.32), John Millar 218, 44.46), Kenny Hislop

(229, 47.15) and Jim Drummond (240, 52.04) rounded off Central’s effort, with the Men finishing in overall second place in the League.

team. A shock was very nearly on the cards when the team from the B League the Oakwood D surged into a 4-2 lead. The A team showed their fighting spirit to come back and snatch a 5-4 victory to be the first team into the semi-finals. The second quarter-final was unfortunately a no-contest as the team from the Cairn B was unable to field a team against the Locker Room A and therefore took their place in the semi-final versus the Oakwood A on 24th Jan. The third quarter-final between Allanbridge and Locker Room B took place on Tuesday with the fourth between County and Crown A taking place on Thursday with reports to follow next week.

Event 1:-

Fighting for lead: Kerry McPhee close on the heels of eventual winner Morgan Windram-Geddes of Fife as the work through the combined senior womens and under 17 men race Kerry McPhee Jenny Emsley Catriona Buchanan Hazel Dean Isla Campbell Shona Aitken Jane Waterhouse Shona Buchanan

2nd in 21:30 6th 22:11 7th 22:17 20th 24:20 36th 25:32 39th 25:39 53rd 26:45 79th 28.55

POOL WEEK 15 RESULTS A LEAGUE:Oakwood A 2 Locker Room A 7 Locker Room B 6 Allanbridge 3 Crown B 3 Peppes 6 Inn 3 Crown A 6 Alva Golf Club 4 Oakwood C 5 B LEAGUE:Oakwood D 9 Cairn A 0 County 2 Crosskeys 7 Weirs 5 Upstairs 4 Oakwood B 6 Cairn B 3 Hammies 9 Gartmorn 0

Graham Henny Memorial Cup Sponsored By Crown Alva:-


he first two quarter-finals took place last week with the first match being a battle between two teams from the Oakwood Sauchie with the A team up against the D

SPA Individual Membership

This years first qualifying event takes place this Saturday 21st Jan in Rileys Stirling with 32 players looking to book their place into the four places available and join Pete Smith from the top 16 into the national finals in the Red Triangle on 18th/19th February. Good luck to all players.

International Call-Up:-

The League would like to offer its congratulations and best wishes to Pete Smith (Locker Room A) who following on from his successful season last year in which it included two national finals in a row he has received a call-up to the Scottish Men’s A team for the forth-coming European Championships in Bridlington in March. Good Luck!!

weecounty sport

Friday 20.1.12



Alloa RFC…………………………………13 Harris Acad FP………………………….13


lloa entertained Harris at Earlsfield for the second time this season anticipating another free flowing game of rugby. The first encounter was in a cup tie which had the home side leading by 26-8 after an hour, but the Taysiders fought back in the last 20 minutes to record a 26-32 victory. This match, whilst not producing the 9 tries of the previous meeting, did provide the large crowd with an exciting contest. It was the visitors who started the match the better of the two sides and Alloa had to soak up a fair amount of pressure during the first 20 minutes, but their defence was solid, in particular the Back Row trio of Maitland, Pope and Ireland. Harris were proving adept at hitting the gain line from deep and with pace, but found time and again that the Alloa defence were in no mood to concede any ground, but just as they were showing signs of frustration at their lack of penetration, the visitors were awarded a cheap penalty when the referee deemed, what looked like a perfectly good double tackle in the centre, to be illegal and their Stand Off made no mistake with the kick. If the first 20 minutes of the match belonged to the visitors then the remaining 20 minutes belonged to Alloa who were beginning to find their feet at the set pieces and force the opposition to defend deep in their own half. This pressure soon forced a number of penalties and eventually they were punished when Alan Keir slotted an easy kick from in front of the posts. A share of the lead was a fair reflection of the first half, but Harris will probably count themselves unlucky not to score right on half time when only a tremendous touch line tackle from Colin Jess prevented what looked like a certain score. Alloa took the lead 10 minutes into the second period when Keir once more slotted a penalty from in front of the posts, but this lead was to be short lived when somewhat against the run of play, Harris pounced on a loose ball in the midfield and 4 passes later were celebrating a try out wide. In keeping with the see saw nature of the match, Alloa were next on the attack and with the forwards doing extremely well to recycle ball from a continued series of drives at the visitors

try line, they were soon celebrating a try of their own when quick hands from Kris Aitken fed Alan Keir who dived over from a metre out for a well-deserved score in the corner. The young Full Back then expertly kicked over the conversion tight from the touchline and these extra 2 points, which seemed like a bonus at the time, were soon to prove crucial in the match. Alloa were now defending a 5 point lead with only 10 minutes remaining and appeared in control of the match, but the Harris side had other ideas and they showed why they have been beaten only twice this season in 10 league matches when they took advantage of what looked like a blatant offside on the Alloa side of a ruck, to run in an equalising score. Alloa felt slightly aggrieved at the final whistle, but a share of the points was probably what both sides deserved on the overall balance of play. Matt Pope was awarded Man of the Match for an excellent Back Row display. Alloa have now collected 6 points from the last 2 matches and will be hoping to build on this when they take the short trip through to Stirling on Saturday to face the University side. 2pm KO.

Hillfoots RFC host RBS 6 Nations Trophy T his coming Monday, 23rd January, Hillfoots will host the launch night of the RBS 6 Nations trophy tour. The aim of the RBS Trophy Tour is to reward clubs across Scotland for being at the top of the RBS league at the half way point and for the work they have undertaken in their local community. This is an amazing

honour for the club and everyone involved, we hope you can join us. The clubhouse and bar will be open from 3pm-5pm and again from 6pm-8pm, for professional photo opportunities with the trophy and a Q&A with Ex-Scotland Captain, Andy Nicol. There will be snacks and light bites available. Everyone’s welcome! Just come along.

Weekend Fixtures Sat 21st January 2012

Weekend Results Sat 14th January 2012

Kinross : Madras Grangemouth : Fife South Stirling Uni : Alloa St. Andrews Uni : Blairgowrie RFC Harris Acad FP : Carnoustie HSFP

Grangemouth 82 : 0 Kinross Madras 35 : 12 Stirling Uni Fife South 3 : 42 St. Andrews Uni Alloa 13 : 13 Harris Acad FP Blairgowrie RFC P Carnoustie HSFP




11 11 12 11 12 12 12 11 13 11




11 0 10 0 9 0 8 1 6 0 4 1 3 0 3 0 2 0 1 0

F : A

Bonus Points

0 405:43 1 415:119 3 309:199 2 227:213 6 261:268 7 153:165 9 134:360 8 121:237 11 102:286 10 101:338

6 9 8 4 5 -4 3 1 2 2

Weekend Results: Sat 14th Janaury 2012

Weekend Fixtures: Sat 21st January 2012

Aberdeen Uni - P - Hillfoots Gordonians - P - Strathmore Aberdeenshire - P - Mackie Acad FP Caithness 38 : 3 Orkney Highland 30 : 0 Glenrothes

Strathmore : Aberdeen Uni Mackie Acad FP : Hillfoots Orkney : Gordonians Glenrothes : Aberdeenshire Highland : Caithness

50 49 44 38 29 22 15 13 10 6


Played W


12 12 13 13 12 12 12 13 11 12

10 8 7 7 7 4 5 3 3 2



0 1 0 0 0 3 2 2 1 1

2 3 6 6 5 5 5 8 7 9

F : A

278:142 282:196 291:277 285:297 233:222 178:193 208:213 189:316 247:267 250:318



7 6 7 7 4 3 2 4 7 7

47 40 35 35 28 25 22 20 17 12



Friday 20.1.12



League win for Sauchie Sauchie Juniors 3 Arniston Rangers 0

By Mark Wallace


fter their Scottish cup tie victory last Saturday, Sauchie were back in League business, their first league match since the 19th November 2011 facing Arniston Rangers. The visitors are currently languishing in the lower half of the league table. There were only two changes from the team that beat Neilston last week, the return of Ally Burns for Steven Bell and Kenny Feaks replacing the injured Steven Rennie. Sauchie started the match very poorly, appearing unable to make two passes together. Indeed, Arniston took advantage of Sauchie’s poor start and create the better chances in the first twenty minutes, with Halliwell in the Sauchie goals the busier of the two goalkeepers. Around the twenty third minute,

Sauchie woke up and put together some creative passing which resulted in their first shot, from their number six, Chris Purdie, who’s shot was however too direct at Bartoz Rochowski, in the Arniston goals. Sauchie followed this up with two successive corners resulting in a shot from Comrie and a header from Tully respectively. On the twentyeighth minute, Sauchie broke the deadlock with a goal from Ally Burns. He received a pass from Brian Morgan and he strongly fought off the Arniston Rangers centre half to blast the ball pass the advancing Rochowski. Sauchie did not allowed Arniston to regroup and scored three minutes later through a great shot from Purdie, from twenty five yards. He received a clever pass from Gary Carroll and hit the ball into the top left corner of the Arniston goal. These two goals, enabled


Saturday 14th January 2012 Polish Cup (Round 7) Div 1: 1st Brian Miller (10) 38 pts; 2nd Jim McEwan (6) 38 pts; 3rd Louis Caine (8) 38 pts.

Div 2: 1st Jerry Cant (14) 38 pts; 2nd Stuart Morrison (13) 35 pts; 3rd Davie Cowie (15) 34 pts.

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Sauchie to take control and they continued to press the Arniston defence. In midfied, Comrie and Prudie were controlling the match aided by the hard work from Morgan and Mackison. Before the end of the first half, Comrie had a further two attempts at the Arniston’s goals, which tested Rochowski. Sauchie started the second half as they ended it, by increasing the pressure on the Arniston defence. Ally Burns and Cary Carroll, who was having one of his best matches for Sauchie, continued to give the Arniston defence headaches with their strong running and link up play. To their credit, Arniston tried to get forward, but their efforts proved fruitless, with the Sauchie defence marshalled by Tully and King, mopping up at the back. Sauchie continued to have further chance at the Arniston goals, through a Purdie header and shots from Feaks, Burns and Carroll. On the sixty minute mark, Steven Hutchison replaced Scott Mackison, in the midfield. Hutchison made an impression after ten minutes, with a low hard shot that Rochowski could not hold. The rebound was met by right full back, Kenny Feaks, who blasted the ball into the Arniston net for his first ever goal for Sauchie and their third of the match. Unfortunately, a few minutes later, Hutchison was stretched off after a tackle. For the rest of the match, Sauchie remained in control, continuing to play the better football. On the eighty four minute, Comrie’s shot hit the top of the bar. The Sauchie defence managed to keep their second successive clean sheet,

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helped by a great block from Halliwell who spread himself to save a shot from Landell on the eightieth minute. Overall it was a satisfying victory for Sauchie, who scored three good goals and kept another clean sheet. Next Saturday, Sauchie are back into Emirates Scottish Junior Cup action with a fourth round match against a strong Boness team. Sauchie have

already beaten the Super League team this season in an earlier League Cup match. Sauchie cannot afford to start slowly as they did against Arniston Rangers, however the Boness respresentatives in the stand will have plenty to think about. The match is at Beechwood Park with a 1.45 ko, with a large crowd is anticipated.

weecounty sport

Friday 20.1.12 29


Managers Comments:


rniston Rangers at home, first league fixture we have played in a while as we have been busy on Scottish cup duty. The league this season is proving to be very tough with all the teams beating each other at both ends of the league table so we were going to have to be out the traps nice and early and deliver a good performance to get us the three points we need. We started the game making two changes from the team that won at Neilston last week. Steven Rennie was out with a fractured foot, Kenny Feaks stepped back into the side. Steven Bell was also struggling a bit during the week s Ally Burns started up front with Gary Carroll instead. The team started sluggish in the first ten minutes but after that we found our feet on the Beechwood turf and managed to start playing some really good football. Alan Comrie and Chris Purdie were starting to pull the strings in midfield and we were creating chances and our first goal came from Ally Burns with great strength and composure he held off two defenders and put the ball in the back of the net. Brian Morgan and Scott Mackison were getting more into the game and young Brian’s energy was starting to worry the opposition with Scott being hard and breaking play up for us. Our back four and keeper were pretty

comfortable and never looked in any danger of conceding and when Chris Purdie fired a rocket into the top corner from 25 yards we really looked to be on our way to securing the three points so early in the game. Credit to Arniston they battled and tried to break us down to no avail. Into the second half we were delighted at half time but told the lads to be on there toes and be right up for the second half as we knew it would be hard to get the third goal and finish them off. Second half was one way traffic for long periods and we eventually made the breakthrough when new signing, Steven Hutchison struck a 35 yard drive that the keeper could only parry and great follow up by Kenny Feaks to finish well and keep the three points at Beechwood. Several chances fell to us and we should have done better, but great front play again today by Gary Carroll who was instrumental in this victory and a great one on one save from Bryn late on kept the clean sheet we wanted. It was great to be back at Beechwood and the players really felt the difference and we move on now into this weeks Scottish cup game against Bo’ness at Beechwood which will be a cracking game. We hope and as the underdogs again we are looking to cause a cup upset. It looks like being a busy day next week at Beechwood so please come along and support the lads to victory we hope. Bo’ness will have a large travelling support and it will be a real test for our young squad.

Junior Football League Home Away TEAM P W D L F A Oakley United 9 3 2 0 14 5 Tayport 11 1 2 2 3 4 Penicuik Athletic 9 3 0 2 13 7 Glenrothes 10 3 2 0 12 8 Sauchie Juniors 7 3 0 0 7 2 Broxburn Athletic 9 3 1 0 14 4 Newtongrange Star 1 1 2 1 3 9 7 Ballingry Rovers 11 2 2 1 12 9 Broughty Athletic 12 0 3 3 7 15 Armadale Thistle 12 2 3 2 10 8 Arniston Rangers 11 1 1 3 4 11 Downfield 10 1 1 3 7 11

W D L F A 3 1 0 13 6 4 2 0 8 1 2 0 2 6 5 1 1 3 9 14 1 2 1 7 7 1 1 3 5 11 1 3 1 10 9 1 2 3 6 14 3 1 2 8 11 0 2 3 5 10 1 2 3 6 14 1 1 3 8 10

GD Pts 16 21 6 19 7 15 -1 15 5 14 4 14 3 13 -5 13 -11 13 -3 11 -15 9 -6 8


Friday 20.1.12


Managers Comments ...


alking after the game against Annan, Paul Hartley said; “It was a tough game for us, we always knew it was going to be hard as Annan are a difficult side to play against but I am delighted with the result. It’s brought the monkey of our back as it’s the first win against them, which is pleasing. “It keeps our good run going and it gives us a little bit of leeway between us and Annan now - 5 points - and we have still got a game in hand so I am delighted with the effort of the players. “We can play a lot better than we did today, but I think on chances, we created the better of them especially in the second half with Stevie May up front - he scored a really good goal - he was outstanding again today. Talking about on fire hitman Stevie May and his loan spell at the Recs, Hartley said; “I don’t want to see him leave but its out with my hands - it’s in the hands of St Johnstone – we are hoping that St Johnstone can keep Sandaza and bring a couple of strikers in so that we can keep Stevie. “I think it is important that he gets to play first team football and he is getting the opportunity and he is enjoying it and scoring goals, he is playing with a smile on his face. “If we don’t keep Stevie, we will just have to try hard to find someone else – we have got him for next week and hopefully we can keep him to the end of the season.” Hartley on the teams undefeated run; “Being undefeated in the last eleven games has given the players a positive reaction, they are enjoying it. The more games they go unbeaten the more confident they get so it’s a great thing in football when you win and don’t lose the level of confidence you get. “If you lose games confident can drain from you, so we are going in the right direction, we have to keep it going we had two defeats in 19 games and have to keep it going. “We are pleased with the progress but there is a lot more to come from the team. It’s hard work to try and stay at the top of the table but it’s not just up to me, it’s up to the back team as well if it wasn’t for them we wouldn’t be in this position. “We are half way through the season but nothing is ever decided in January, so we have to keep the hard work up and see how it goes. “There is a long way to go but we won’t get carried away, as long as we are in the mix at the end of the season that’s all I have said to the players.”

Fraser Forrest retires


asps defender, Fraser Forrest has asked to be released from his contract, after making his 100th first team appearance for the club against East Stirlingshire at Ochilview on 2nd January, 2012. Fraser has been suffering from back pain and has been advised to call it a day, and will now retire from football at the age of only 28. Forrest joined the Wasps back in 2005 from local side Stenhousemuir and has had three spells at the Recs. Last season, he helped junior side Bo’ness United in their championship winning season before arriving back in Alloa. Fraser has never given anything less than 100% in his times at Recreation Park, the club would like to thank him for his commitment whenever called upon.



weecounty sport

Friday 20.1.12




Annan Athletic 0

Berwick 2 Notman (10) Currie (32)

Stranraer 2 McColm (6) Malcolm (75)

Montrose 4 McGowan (51) Johnstone (53) Winter (75) McNalley (90)

Clyde 0

Peterhead 1 Wyness (35)

East Stirling 0

Queen’s Park 6 Elgin 0 McBride (35) Longworth (53, 67, 71, 78) Smith (80)

IRN BRU DIV 3 - Fixtures: SATURDAY 21ST JAN 2012 Annan Athletic v Queen’s Park Clyde v Peterhead East Stirling v Montrose Elgin v Berwick Stranraer v Alloa


Pld W 19 6 20 6 19 7 18 5 19 3 17 6 19 3 19 4 18 3 20 2

D 3 2 2 3 4 1 2 1 3 2

L 0 2 1 1 3 1 4 4 4 6

W 5 5 3 4 3 1 2 2 1 0

D 3 3 2 1 3 3 4 2 1 1

L GD Pts 2 9 39 2 23 38 4 7 34 4 11 31 3 3 25 5 -1 25 4 -2 21 6 -9 21 6 -7 16 9 -34 9


Page 27

May on target as Wasps go top

Alloa 1 Annan Athletic 0 On fire, on loan striker Stevie May charging down the wing during Alloa’s vital win against fellow promotion rivals Annan at the Recs.

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lloa went into this top of table clash with Annan unbeaten at home all season and on run of 10 games without a defeat, giving them confidence to finally get the better of the visitors this season. Despite the speculation regarding on form striker Stevie May’s loan deal, the St Johnstone striker was partnered up front with Cawley. It was the visitors who started the better, both O’Conner and Winters (Robbie’s brother) had chances saved well by Bain in the home goal. As Alloa started to settle, they found their stride and began passing the ball well around the park, followed by some very good and attractive attacking football. May set up Cawley but his shot was saved by Mitchell in the Annan goal – a routine save for any goalkeeper. The visitors did try to keep the

tempo high and as the Wasps tried to get to grips with it, Annan who pushed forward and could have taken the lead when Winters only managed a weak shot at Bain from a golden opportunity. The Wasps took the lead on the 30th minute after Ryan McCord was fouled some 35 yards out as he was driving towards goal. From the free kick laid of by McCord, MAY fired off a hard and fast low shot which found its way past the goalkeeper into the bottom corner of the net. In fairness, Mitchell should have done better as the keeper let the shot slip past his diving body into the net. Clearly lifted by the goal, Alloa could have made it two 4 minutes later, good play by Holmes played in Cawley but his shot was tipped over by Mitchell. As half time approached it was the home side that where on top,

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particularly having success down the right flank, but couldn’t get a second before the whistle went for the interval. Annan started the second half just as they did in the first, taking the game to Alloa. Both Cox and O’Conner where giving the home side problems but Harding and co held out well. It was the wasps who could have went 2 up with a great sweeping move from their own box, Holmes found Cawley, who played the ball out to May on the left. May’s pin point ball into the box found the on rushing Docherty but Mitchell somehow got down to his left to save. As the home side went for the kill, Annan made the changes bringing on their 3 subs to try and break down a solid Alloa back line. The visitors were very lucky to

keep 11 men on the park in the 71 min. May broke free from the Annan defence and at 18 yards out found himself pulled down by the out rushing Mitchell only for ref Greg Aitken to show a yellow card, despite calls for the keeper to be given his marching orders from the Alloa crowd. Photographic evidence does show that the referee called it correct as the Annan defenders where actually behind the goalkeeper as the challenge was made, therefore making him not the last player. As the game came to a close it was the wasps that finished the strongest despite Annan having one or two good chances to spoil the Wasps climb up the league table. A good day at the office for the Wasps as they keep their promotion and title challenge firmly on track. ATT 635

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