John O' Groat Journal headlines June 27

A PROBE is undeway into how the tenant of a block of flats in Wick was burnt by boiling water which sprung from a burst pipe. Following the incident in Battery Road on Wednesday morning, a man who lives in the flat underneath , spoke of hearing a loud bang before hot water started cascading from the ceiling. Fire, police and ambulance services were scrambled and the casualty was taken to Caithness General Hospital and treated for burns. Several tenants have meanwhile been moved into alternative accommodation while repairs are carried out.


THE hours of school staff who work with pupils with additional eneds in Caithness and Sutherland are being "reduced drastically" by Highland Council. That is the claim made this week by a worried parent in Thurso. The GMB union has also expressed its concern about what is happening and is meeting with the council next week.


A COFFEE morning is being held in support of Wick Boys Brigade, tomorrow, as part of a drive to revive the presence of the organisation in the town. Wick man Robert Ferguson has taken on the task of setting the group up again, knowing the good it can do for young men, having himself been involved in it for many years. He has a group of 10 volunteers to take on the challenge and once the necessary paperwork is in place, he hopes a unit could be up and running by the end of the year.


ALEX Salmond said a far north councillor should "go and do her homework" after she criticised his plan to pour millions of Crown Estate seabed leasing revenues into the coffers of the islands. The First Minister accused Deidre Mackay of sour grapes after she called for the same enviable package to be handed to Caithness and Sutherland.


A YOUNG Halkirk woman has landed a part in a new television soap in south-east Asia. Karyn Johnston who has lived in the Phillipines for almost two years , has been making a name for herself there. She secured modelling assignments, appeared in television commercials and was chose to feature in a national newspaper and TV campaign for a soap product. Now she has landed a role in a television drama.


THE Ministry of Defence has to be "open and transparent" when dealing with issues such as the radioactive incident at Vulcan, two years ago. That was said this week by Scottish Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead after high-level talks with UK Defence Minister Philip Dunne MP and Baroness Verma, a minister at the Department of Energy and Climate Change. Afterwards, Mr Lochhead said Scottish and UK government officials will review the way these matters are reported.


CAITHNESS Rural Transport is celebrating the unveiling of a new passenger carrier to use on its valued community service. The project has benefited from the Scottish Government's 1 million Ccommunity Transport Fund, to purchase a new vehicle. They were one of just nine groups across Scotland to receive funding out of 39 applicants.


A HALKIRK horsewoman is celebrating winning one of the biggest prizes in her long list of successes. Ashley Anderson has just returned from the Royal Highland Show at Ingliston, near Edinburgh, where she won the in-hand colour horses championship, with her pony Freckleton First Class.


PENTLAND United prepared for their biggest game of the season this weekend by reaching the semi-finals of the Eain Mackintosh Cup with a 3-0 victory against Swifts at Ham Park. A goal from Lukasz Geruzel and two from James Murray sent the Stabs into the last four but they were made to work hard by a Swifts outfit which looks to be fighting against relegation from the top flight.