View Full Version : Fit's in 'e Groat 'e day?

03-Feb-12, 17:20
John O’ Groat Journal review: February 3, 2012

A LOCAL man is celebrating a once-in-a-lifetime discovery after digging up a hoard of ancient coins in Caithness. Thrilled metal detector enthusiastic Mikie Aitken believes the find, made last week, could be worth a small fortune. Mr Aitken said he felt as if he had struck gold when his detector started beeping and he uncovered the incredible stash. The 27-year-old self-employed non-destructive testing supervisor from Killimister, came across the potentially valuable ancient coins while he was out engaging his hobby. When he researched his find with other enthusiasts, he learned that the coins date back to 1279 and, if sold at auction, could be worth thousands of pounds.

THE engineering sector in the Far North has received a massive boost with the news that 100 jobs have been made secure at Wester. Subsea 7 has been awarded a $100 million contract from BP to carry out work for its Clair Ridge Project located west of Shetland. Staff at its Caithness site will fabricate the 6km, 22inch oil export pipeline bundle, as well as a 14km, six-inch gas export pipeline. The scope of the contract also includes tie-ins of integrated subsea towhead structures, field testing and pre-commissioning activities at Wester.

NEW traders in Wick town centre are generally feeling optimistic about the future following 18 months of activity. Over the past year-and-a-half, several new shops have set up in the town and along with existing traders, have been spurred on with help from the Caithness Chamber of Commerce. However, uncertainties remain for the future of shops in the town and concerns raised by traders, include a lack of customers at weekends and businesses not directly in the town centre still suffering from a lack of trade. While these retailers have been setting up in a tough economic climate, the local chamber has been pushing the drive for the regeneration of both Wick and Thurso town centres including implementing a new loyalty card scheme.

THE call has gone out to Caithness women to don their running shoes for charity. The Cancer Research UK’s annual Race for Life event, in Inverness, regularly attracts entrants from the Far North and organisers are keen to welcome even more to this year’s fundraisers which takes place on May 6 at Bucht Park. Race for Life is non-competitive. Women can choose whether to walk, jog or run, the 5k route and most are able to walk it in an hour. All women are welcome regardless of whether they are taking part on their own or as part of a group.

Twenty-six new jobs to support pupils in schools across the Highlands look set to be created by the local authority, a year after it tried to axe 344 classroom assistant posts in a controversial cost-cutting move. A public outcry was sparked in February 2011 when Highland Council tried to scrap 344 mostly part-time jobs, the equivalent of 158 full-time posts, to save £1.5million. But, in a remarkable U-turn the council’s budget leader has confirmed an extra £650,000 will be spent on establishing the newly-created post of pupils support assistant in primary schools. The cash will also see the equivalent of 26-fulltime jobs created.

HARD-PRESSED Highland head teachers, who are struggling to juggle teaching pupils with running their schools, could get a helping hand. An extra £200,000 looks set to be spent by the Highland Council on supporting primary heads in carrying out the management side of their jobs, a move which has been welcomed by a teaching union. The Educational Institute of Scotland said its members had been complaining for some time, about the pressure they faced in fulfilling all their duties and claimed it was because of cuts to the education budget. The local authority’s budget leader, Councillor David Alston, said the cash would be spent helping head teachers carry out their management duties.

A LOCAL solicitor has issue stark warning about a law that could see children of remarried couples miss out on their inheritance. Principal of Georgesons and online wills, lawyer Bruce de Wert, is calling for remarried couples to broach the sensitive topic. Mr de Wert claims a piece of legislation has failed to be brought into line with modern living arrangements, where people remarry and have a second set of children. This legal loophole means that a second partner can claim a large sum of money from a property and the house itself, on their spouse’s death, leaving very little for the bereaved’s offspring.

A RALLYING cry comes from the dugouts this week as both Wick Academy manager Davie Kirkwood and his opposite number Huntly skipper Dave McGinlay agree on one thing...tomorrow should see one of the most entertaining games of the season so far. As the two teams prepare to go head-to-head at Harmsworth Park, tomorrow, both managers are encrouraging football fans to fill out the ground and show their support. Scorries boss Kirkwood has high hopes for the game and wants local fans, not just Academy, but of football in general, to turn up for the fixture.