Rumours are circulating that Britpop legends Oasis are re-forming for a benefit gig in their home city of Manchester this weekend. The speculation was kick-started by a member of The Black Eyed Peas, who tagged the group in a post about Ariana Grande's One Love Manchester show on Sunday. The concert was organised in the wake of the Manchester Arena terror attack last week, which left 22 dead and a further 64 injured. Free tickets have been offered for Grande fans who attended the concert which was targeted by an alleged suicide bomber. Katy Perry, Take That, Justin Bieber, Coldplay, Pharrell Williams, Miley Cyrus and Usher will all play alongside the US pop star at the concert. Taboo Nawasha, a member of the Black Eyed Peas, tweeted about the gig; tagging all the musicians and bands that will play at the Old Trafford Cricket Grounds. Oasis were included in the original tweet, which was quickly deleted. https://twitter.com/TabBep/status/869907050691608579 https://twitter.com/TabBep/status/869906670436007937?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw&ref_url=http%3A%2F%2Fmetro.co.uk%2F2017%2F05%2F31%2Fwhen-and-how-to-watch-ariana-grandes-one-love-manchester-concert-6675547%2F https://twitter.com/TabBep/status/869907050691608579 Nawasha then posted that he had made a mistake and put the mention of the rock group down to "human error". Classic Oasis single Don't Look Back in Anger rose up the charts last week after the people of Manchester adopted it in the wake of the terror attack. Oasis are among Manchester’s most famous and cherished musical exports, though the band split up in 2009. They are one of the most symbolic groups of the 1990s and the Britpop era. The band was fronted by brothers Liam and Noel Gallagher, who have been at loggerheads since the split. https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/news/uk-world/434338/video-beautiful-moment-people-manchester-turn-silent-tribute-oasis-dont-look-back-anger-articleisfree/ However commenting on the rumours on Radio 1, Liam said though he is "up for it" - it wouldn't be possible due to his solo commitments in Germany this weekend.
It's not even the end of January, but already 2018 is shaping up to be one of the biggest years for live music that Courier Country has experienced in a long time. Excitement reached fever pitch on Tuesday morning following a string of huge gig announcements, with music icons including Noel Gallagher and Lionel Richie confirming shows in the region. We've put together a list of the biggest acts heading our way in the coming months. This article will be updated as and when further acts are announced. Lionel Richie US singer Lionel Richie will perform to thousands of fans at McDairmid Park, Perth on June 3. Tickets for the gig will go on sale online at 10am on Friday, February 2. Richie is the biggest star to play the stadium since Elton John more than a decade ago. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nqAvFx3NxUM https://twitter.com/LionelRichie/status/958249678314721280 Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=67zX4oiXqqY The former Oasis man will be the headline act at the BBC's Biggest Weekend festival at Scone Palace on May 26. The guitarist and singer-songwriter, who penned some of the most famous songs of the 1990s, will perform with his High Flying Birds band. https://twitter.com/NoelGallagher/status/958254887866916864 Rita Ora Music superstar Rita Ora is another big name added to the Slessor Gardens concert list. She will play at Dundee's waterfront venue on Saturday July 28. Gary Barlow The Take That frontman is playing two gigs in Tayside this year, one at Perth Concert Hall on April 19 and another at Dundee's Caird Hal on April 20. Tickets for both gigs sold out rapidly. Status Quo Legendary British rock band Status Quo will be at Scone Palace as the headline act for the 2018 ReWind Festival in July. Bonnie Tyler, The Boomtown Rats and UB40 These are just a few of the other big name acts returning to Tayside for this year's Rewind Festival. Simple Minds and The Pretenders Scottish rock bands Simple Minds and The Pretenders will lead the line-up at Dundee's Slessor Gardens on September 9. Steps The pop group are coming to Slessor Gardens on June 22. They will be supported by fellow 90s bands Blue and Aqua. KT Tunstall The Fife musician is providing support to both Simple Minds and The Pretenders at Slessor Gardens on September 9, and to Gary Barlow at his local gigs in April. Belle and Sebastian The influential Scottish band will play Perth Concert Hall on Friday, March 23. Eddi Reader The Scots singer will play Perth Concert Hall on February 28. Leo Sayer The pop star will play at Rothes Halls, Glenrothes, on October 9. Suggs https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dc3AovUZgvo The Ska legend and Madness frontman is playing at Dunfermline's Alhambra Theatre on Wednesday, February 28. Erasure https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x34icYC8zA0 The 1980s synthpop act are playing Dundee's Caird Hall in just a matter of days - on Friday, February 2. The Proclaimers The Scottish musical legends will play Dundee's Caird Hall on December 15. Could more great gigs be on the cards for Tayside and Fife? Dundonians were treated to three shows at Slessor Gardens in 2017 from UB40, Little Mix and Olly Murs, so we may well see some more big-name musicians making their way to the city in 2018. And MoFest is yet to announce its 2018 line-up after attracting The Beach Boys last year. Will Carnival 56 return? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=29oN9VBXf_U Despite attracting thousands of music fans and earning several major award nominations, the future of Dundee's new music festival still remains unknown. Festival founder Craig Blyth has left the company that set up the popular event at Camperdown Park last year. However Dundee City Council has granted permission for it to run every year until 2021. In October last year an official festival spokeswoman said there had been “no confirmation” of the festival’s return, adding: “The debrief process is still under way”. Sir Rod Stewart to Dundee? No, we've not given up on Sir Rod coming to Dundee in 2018! The rocker is partnered with the Liz Hobbs Group, who are behind all of the hugely-successful 2017 Slessor Gardens concerts. Sir Rod came out as the overwhelming favourite in a Courier poll which asked locals who they would most like to see next at the waterfront music venue in 2018. And the Lizz Hobbs Group themselves haven't ruled it out. Sir Rod is not believed to have played in Dundee since the 1970s, despite a number of appearances elsewhere in Scotland. In this weekend's Courier, we speak to Simple Minds singer-songwriter Jim Kerr.
‘Cementing its place as the UK’s cultural and design hotspot’: Dundee’s transformation hailed by global travel magazine
Dundee has been named alongside Toronto and Cape Town as one of the world's top six "off-beat design hubs" by a global travel magazine. Suitcase, a publication read by more than 200,000 people, has named the City of Discovery on its lineup of world locations which have used design to drive their reinvention. The magazine compiled a list of cities across the globe which are "reinventing themselves" and "transforming urban living". These include Helsinki, Medellin, Tbilisi, Cape Town and Toronto - all locations which writer Fleur Rollet-Manus claims are "design-driven cities that are probing even further, questioning existing methods, finding solutions and striving for social change using the medium of design". The article hails Dundee's "huge revival", drawing reference to the V&A and the waterfront redevelopment, the fashion and art scenes and the redevelopment of the former Baxter Brothers jute mill off Constable Street. The feature, published on March 1, states: "A former economic powerhouse once renowned for its textile trade, Dundee’s re-emerging contemporary fashion and arts scene, coupled with the wealth of digital media companies that call Dundee home, is cementing its place as the UK’s cultural and design hotspot. "The compact Scottish city is undergoing a huge revival with a £1 billion waterfront regeneration headed by the V&A Museum of Design. "As part of the development, two new boutique hotels are taking residence in the historic Baxter Brothers and Co spinning mills. "The newly appointed UNESCO Creative City, the first in the UK, will continue to turn heads as they strive to eradicate social problems such as unemployment and homelessness through community design initiatives and their annual design festival." In October last year the Wall Street Journal called Dundee “Scotland’s coolest city”, placing it at number five on a top ten list of “where to travel in 2018”. Bloomberg Businessweek then listed it sixth in its “top 22” destinations to visit in 2018, while CNN Style placed the city on its ‘top seven’ list of the most eye-catching locations to visit in 2018. The Guardian also listed Dundee on its “where to go hotlist” for 2018. Quarterly magazine Suitcase is the brainchild of publisher and businesswoman Serena Guen, who was once labelled the "Mark Zuckerberg of publishing" by Bloomberg. It is available at shops and newsagents across the globe, as well as on planes and in hotels. For the full article, click here.
‘Dundee’s revolution is now visible to a global audience’: Bloomberg recognition shows Dundee’s ‘star is on the rise’
Local figureheads say Dundee's inclusion in a list of the world's top destinations is a sign that the city's resurgence is being "recognised" globally. Leading US weekly magazine Bloomberg Businessweek named the City of Discovery sixth on its "top 22" places to visit in 2018 alongside the likes of Los Angeles, New Orleans, Singapore, Abu Dhabi and Florence. It also takes pride of place on the "where to go" list next to South Korea, Jordan, Chilean Patagonia, Borneo, Namibia, Cambodia and Fiji. Bloomberg claim that May is the best time of year to visit Tayside, citing the forthcoming V&A Dundee as a building that will "showcase Scotland’s wide-ranging design legacy". The Bloomberg article adds: "It’s just one piece of a $1.3 billion revitalization project on the River Tay that will also include a new train station, art installations, and an urban beach—cementing Dundee’s status as an up-and-coming cultural hub." And last night Dundee gaming pioneer Chris van der Kuyl said the inclusion on the list is a sign of how far the city has come in recent years. He added: "I am not surprised any more. I think our confidence in the city is being recognised by others. Whereas a decade ago people would have really raised their eyebrows at something like this, now it is pretty normal. "The fact that we are right up with some pretty incredible 21st-century destinations is amazing. Dundee is all about the future. I think Dundee's revolution is now visible to a global audience. "2018 is going to be one of the most significant years in Dundee's history, not least because of the V&A and the new waterfront being unveiled to the world. More people realise Dundee is the place to come. "I think the more people start recognising Dundee as the exciting place it is, the more people will visit." Leader of Dundee City Council John Alexander said it was "absolutely fantastic" to see "further international recognition of the journey that our city is on". He added: "As Dundonians, we are often our hardest critic and it's always illuminating to hear from an outside perspective. It's clear to see that the reputation and confidence of the city is on the up. "We know that there is much to do in the city, things don't happen over night and there remains big challenges. "However, there is a realisation filtering through that Dundee is on to something special, something which will create real opportunities, investment and jobs and ultimately will ensure that it is a success long after my retirement." Director of Leisure and Culture Dundee Stewart Murdoch said: "While being denied the opportunity to deliver the European Capital of Culture was a huge disappointment, the city has a well-developed cultural offer and a vibrant cultural sector. "We are delighted that Bloomberg has recognised this and shone a light on the city." VisitScotland's regional partnerships director Jim Clarkson said: "Dundee’s star is most definitely on the rise and it is fantastic to see the city getting the global recognition it deserves, this time from Bloomberg." "Scotland's coolest city": Wall Street Journal also praised Dundee Bloomberg isn't the first major US publication to shine a light on Dundee as a global travel destination in recent times. In October last year the Wall Street Journal called it "Scotland's coolest city", placing it at number five on a top ten list of "where to travel in 2018". The New York City newspaper had Dundee ahead of the likes of Shanghai, Madagascar, Montenegro, La Rioja and Grenada; and even made mention of Dundee's famous Reading Rooms. The article read: "A coastal college town, Dundee has emerged as Scotland’s coolest city (see the old public library turned underground club). "In 2018, the V&A Museum of Design will debut as the centerpiece of a $1.5 billion transformation of the faded riverfront. "Designed by Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, the new V&A will celebrate the country’s unsung design heritage—from jute to Minecraft (vandadundee.org)." And in December last year writer Danny Wallace, who was born in Dundee, flew the flag for the city in an article in Condé Nast Traveler. In his love letter to the city, he said Dundee was "not a punchline any more" and hailed his hometown as a revitalised city of "fashion, food, music, bars, art, design, research, science, creativity". All the destinations listed on Bloomberg's "where to go in 2018" article Salvador, Brazil Saint Kitts, Caribbean Chilean Patagonia Borneo Jordan Dundee Georgia Cambodia Abu Dhabi Namibia Singapore Slovenia Los Angeles Florence Fiji South Korea Washington Los Cabos, Mexico New Orleans Southern Tanzania Copenhagen Tunisia
The forthcoming V&A Dundee has been named as one of the top five new museums to visit in the world in 2018 by a major US newspaper. The Los Angeles Times named the £81 million waterfront attraction, which is due to open on September 15, at the top of its list of "new museums to explore" in 2018. Others cited in the travel article include Seattle's new Nordic Heritage Museum, the South Carolina Historical Society Museum in Charleston. https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/news/local/dundee/574567/dundee-named-alongside-los-angeles-singapore-florence-patagonia-bloomberg-top-22-world-destinations/ The article states: "London's V&A Museum, once called the Victoria and Albert, traces its roots back to 1851. This year, V&A Dundee will open Sept. 15 on the east coast of Scotland as the first satellite museum to bear the name. "The remarkable building made with more than 2,000 cast-stone panels looks like a stylised ship floating on the River Tay. Scottish design — architecture, ceramics, jewellery, textiles and more — will be the focus. The opening show is 'Ocean Liners: Speed and Style.'" It comes after both Bloomberg and the Wall Street Journal cited the V&A as they named Dundee among the top destinations to visit in the world in 2018. https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/news/local/dundee/600476/top-design-magazine-awards-superstructure-va-dundee-architecture-gong/ For more on this story, read Tuesday's Courier
The marine animal expert behind an autopsy on a 45ft sperm whale which washed up near Monifieth has given a full update on his findings so far. Dr Andrew Brownlow, head of the Scottish Marine Animal Stranding Scheme (SMASS), carried out a post-mortem on the huge mammal after it washed up on the shores of the Barry Buddon firing range last Wednesday. With the aid of staff and students from the St Andrews’ Sea Mammal Research Unit and fellow marine rescuers, he began the procedure on Friday and concluded it on Saturday. Contractors from Cupar-based FTM Plant Hire used diggers armed with swing-shovels to the beach to roll the sea creature from its location on a rocky section of the shore to the sands further inland for burial. And in what is believed to be a world-first, the workers used their machinery to crack open the whale's skull during the autopsy - allowing for a brain sample to be analysed which could indicate if there was any possible issues in its brain function. The sea creature is believed to have drifted off course as it travelled from either Norway or the north of Scotland to equatorial waters for breeding season. The North Sea is a poor environment for the species, which prefers to feed on fish and squid in deep underwater trenches. With no signs of a ship strike or marine entanglement, human interference in the whale's death has been virtually ruled out. And Dr Brownlow said that, thus far, there are also no signs of a disease having killed the animal. https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/news/local/angus-mearns/624009/video-watch-as-complex-operation-to-probe-death-of-and-bury-tay-sperm-whale-gets-under-way/ No marine debris or plastic were found in its stomach, where there was 300-litres of seawater believed to have been taken in during the stranding itself. More findings may come to light as Dr Brownlow analyses samples taken on the beach in a laboratory. Giving an update to SMASS followers online after spending several days in Tayside dealing with the remains of the sperm whale, Dr Brownlow said: "It’s not often I wish I’d packed crampons for a post-mortem, but I really could have used them on the sperm whale necropsy this weekend. "This sub-adult male stranded on the beach at Monifieth, measured 13.8m (45ft) long, 7m (23ft) in girth and probably weighed over 30 tonnes. "Simply getting a blubber measurement from the flank necessitated climbing up the side of it- in this case by hauling myself up using post-mortem knives like ice picks. "And getting these measurements was just the start of what turned into two days on the beach undertaking the post-mortem. "Initially we had problems even moving the animal - it was simply too big for the plant machinery we initially brought, and, positioned where it was, a couple of hundred meters into the intertidal, we just ran out of time as the tide returned. "In the end it was early Saturday morning before it could be dragged to the high water line where we could finish the post-mortem, and eventually bury, the animal. "Undertaking a post-mortem on something this size is obviously logistically challenging, and many thanks are due to Martin Smith and his team from FTM Plant who were so competent with their machinery that they were able to use a 22-tonne JCB like a dissecting scalpel. "As a result, in addition to a range of visceral samples, we were able to get a sample of brain tissue. "I think this is the first time in the UK that we’ve been able to remove the head –itself something slightly larger than a transit van- during a sperm whale necropsy, and this will enable us to rule out some potentially neurological causes for the stranding." Dr Brownlow added: "In general, the animal was in good body condition, with no indications for entanglement or ship strike. The organs were pretty autolysed - sperm whales decompose incredibly quickly once dead - but they too didn’t show any indication of disease. "The stomach contained about 300 litres of seawater - likely swallowed during the stranding - and some fish and squid bones which we will analyse to see what, and potentially where, it had been foraging. "No significant marine debris or plastic was found in this case either. Obviously we will need to wait to see what else we find from our lab analysis, but it is plausible this animal stranded in the Firth of Tay due simply because it made a navigational error. "Once in shallow waters with large tidal range, animals of this size are at great risk of stranding, and doing so is almost always fatal. "We will keep you posted with any updates, but for now I would just like to thank all who helped with this post-mortem, especially BDMLR (British Divers Marine Life Rescue) and staff and students from the Sea Mammal Research Unit (SMRU) in St Andrews who turned out in force to help. "I literally couldn’t have done this without your assistance, so many many thanks, and I hope you eventually manage to get the smell out of your gear!" https://www.facebook.com/Strandings/posts/1606278879462893
‘This is the right thing to do’: NHS Tayside agrees to refund charity cash used to plug ailing finances
NHS Tayside has vowed to repay charity donations which were used to plug its ailing finances. At an extraordinary meeting of the health board at Ninewells Hospital in Dundee on Thursday, members agreed to refund endowment money which had been transferred and "retrospectively applied to the programmes of work" in 2014. New NHS Tayside chief executive Malcolm Wright and interim chairman John Brown brought the proposal forward at the meeting. The board has required loans from the Scottish Government, known as brokerage, to balance its books for several years. The crisis deepened last month when it emerged £5.3 million of money intended for eHealth funding had been used to make the board’s deficit look better. It was then revealed that in 2014 a sum money from NHS Tayside’s charitable endowment fund, reported to be at least £2.71 million, had been used to pay for a new IT system. A huge chunk of the cash, typically used to fund patient comforts or furnish day suites for families, was used to bankroll “digital healthcare” after a financial deficit was discovered in NHS Tayside’s 2013-14 balance sheet. The scandal prompted Scottish health minister Shona Robison to call for former chairman Professor John Connell to resign, which he did last week. She also said chief executive Lesley McLay, who is now absent from work, was in an “untenable” position. Speaking at Thursday's meeting, Mr Brown said: "For our staff and our patients, we believe this is the right thing to do. https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/news/local/dundee/632217/robison-accused-of-nhs-tayside-smokescreen-as-pressure-mounts-on-health-secretary/ "The decision made by the Board today doesn’t pre-empt the findings of the formal inquiry into Tayside NHS endowment funds by the Office of the Scottish Charity regulator (OSCR). "It does mean that we can move forward, start to rebuild confidence and ensure there are no distractions to continuing to do what we do best and that is making sure everyone in Tayside receives high-quality and effective care and treatment.” Following the announcement, SNP MSP Mrs Robison added: "Chief executive Malcolm Wright and chair John Brown have acted quickly to listen to the concerns of patients and staff. https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/news/local/dundee/630026/call-for-full-probe-into-shocking-reports-that-nhs-tayside-bosses-dipped-in-to-charity-funds-to-plug-their-ailing-finances/ "This move to make good on the historic use of endowment funds will allow the board to fully concentrate on the important task of increasing public confidence and ensuring long term financial stability. "I have authorised further brokerage to NHS Tayside, subject to confirmation of the value, to allow this to happen. "NHS Scotland endowment funds operate within legal frameworks regulated by the OSCR and we expect trustees to comply fully with the legislation. "In addition to writing to all boards asking them to provide assurances that endowment funds are being used appropriately, OSCR has agreed to review the evidence provided. "Should OSCR determine that spending of endowment funds by any board was inappropriate, I would expect it to be paid back swiftly and in full.” Mr Wright said: "There is lots of evidence of high quality care being delivered in Tayside and there is a real determination to deal with the challenges facing Tayside in an open and transparent way and a willingness to work together as an organisation."
A huge, complicated operation to carry out a post-mortem on and bury a 45ft sperm whale which washed up on the banks of the River Tay got under way yesterday. Sea life experts, animal rescue teams and contractors arrived on the beach of the Barry Buddon firing range at 10am on Friday morning - just two days after the massive mammal washed up dead on the shore. Facing a race against time before high tide, samples were taken and a post-mortem was started on the whale by Dr Andrew Brownlow, head of the Scottish Marine Animal Stranding Scheme (SMASS). Contractors from Cupar-based FTM Plant Hire had brought diggers armed with swing-shovels to the beach to roll the sea creature from its location on a rocky section of the shore to the sands further inland. The firm was expected to move the animal during low tide last night and to proceed with burying it this morning. Workers had attempted to roll the animal inshore on Friday afternoon but only managed to move it about 66ft before deciding that a bigger machine was required for the task. The operation was given the go-ahead following consultation between Angus Council and the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa). The beach at Barry Buddon is both a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and an EU Special Area of Conservation (SAC). Dr Brownlow said the samples gathered during yesterday's examination of the whale would help them determine the cause of the its death, adding that disposing of the whale at the Angus beach is a “very difficult” task. https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/news/local/angus-mearns/624142/video-how-did-45ft-sperm-whale-which-washed-up-near-monifieth-die/ He was helped by a number of students from St Andrews' Sea Mammal Research Unit and fellow marine rescuers. The post-mortem will be concluded today, should the whale be successfully shifted. Dr Brownlow said there doesn't appear to be evidence of "human interaction" in the mammal's death and added that some of the wounds could have been sustained during a fight with another male. He added: "It probably weighs in excess of 35 tonnes. And doing a post-mortem on it is going to be quite a challenge, there is no two ways about it. "We try to work out what happened, why is it this animal has come here. "We have not managed to finish it (the post-mortem) today. These whales are incredibly difficult to shift. "We know quite a lot already. It doesn't seem to have any evidence of any direct human interaction. So there is no evidence of an entanglement, there is no evidence that it has been some ship strike. "Interestingly if you look at the head end of it there are some bits that do look like its been fighting with other males - what I think looked like teeth marks on its rostral. "So we're kind of piecing this all together to try and learn what happened." He added that the whale may have taken a wrong turn on its way from feeding around Norway, Orkney and Shetland to equatorial waters, but ended up in the North Sea - an environment which is difficult for the species to navigate. A Sepa spokesman said: "Given the location of the whale and the area’s various environmental designations, such as a special area of conservation (SAC), Sepa has advised the local authority that a number of partner organisations should be consulted, including the Scottish Natural Heritage and Ministry of Defence, prior to a final decision on disposal. "While the whale does not pose any immediate risk to the environment, Sepa officers will continue to monitor the situation and work with the local authority to find a suitable disposal option." Angus Council said arrangements had been made for the safe disposal of the carcass.
A US broadcasting giant has named Dundee alongside Tokyo and Paris as one of the world's most "design-savvy" cities. CNN Style - a branch of the American news channel dedicated to features on travel, fashion, architecture and the arts - has listed the City of Discovery on its 'top seven' list of the most eye-catching locations to visit in 2018. It comes just days after Bloomberg Businessweek listed Dundee sixth in its “top 22” destinations to visit in 2018. The Guardian also listed the city on its "where to go hotlist" for 2018. Toronto, Paris, Tokyo, Muscat, Tbilisi and San Miguel de Allende all feature on the CNN list, which picked out "seven of the cities you should be eyeing in 2018". The article originally appeared on digital publication The Spaces. The article states: "It was once the UK capital of cash register production, but the decline of traditional industry and loss of jobs in the 1980s saw Dundee adopt a plan to reinvent itself as a cultural center. https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/news/local/dundee/574567/dundee-named-alongside-los-angeles-singapore-florence-patagonia-bloomberg-top-22-world-destinations/ "A massive, £1 billion regeneration masterplan kicked off in 2001 and the resulting transformation of the city has started to take hold, with the Dundee Waterfront scheme set to hit crucial landmarks in 2018. "It may have had its 2023 European Capital of Culture bid scuppered by Brexit but the city's under-construction, £80-million V&A Museum of Design Dundee will open its doors within the next 12 months, placing it firmly on the international art map." It adds that Dundee stands out due to its "ambitious renovations and build-to-rent developments". Locals have also reacted to the mention of the city in the CNN article. Director of Creative Dundee Gillian Easson said: “We're delighted to see Dundee in this list of top global cities for design and culture. "We hear people talk about what Dundee 'will be' like in the future, so it's great to know the city’s current cultural scene is already on the map alongside many must-visit international destinations. "As we celebrate 10 years of Creative Dundee this year, there’s an ever-increasing amount happening right across the city, from ambitious urban developments, to incredible community gardens, great events, shows and exhibitions, and brilliant local artists, musicians, designers and creative spaces. "We're glad to see the growing recognition of our city and look forward to giving a typically warm Dundee welcome to visitors when they arrive."
The Tayside producers of an unusual snack made for the Chinese market have not ruled out it hitting the shelves of UK shops. The first batch of Mackie's of Scotland's new strawberry-flavoured crisps will soon be on the way to Shanghai after samples proved a huge hit at the SIAL China Trade Show in the city last month. And yesterday residents of Scotland's soft fruit capital, Blairgowrie, had their say on the unique delicacy after The Courier got a hold of an exclusive bag of some strawberry samples. The fruit-flavoured crisps were launched alongside a salted caramel blend specifically for the Chinese market. They should be on sale in the country by the end of July after proving a "massive success" at the Shanghai show. Initially the premise started out as an April Fool's Day joke by staff at the Mackie's at Taypack factory in Errol. However the idea was quickly developed as the company noted the "sweet tooth" of the Chinese market. Commercial director at Mackie's of Scotland, James Taylor, said the firm had not ruled out giving the strawberry and salted caramel crisps a go in the UK as well. Mr Taylor added: "Strawberry and salted caramel were what was shortlisted after trying a wide range of different flavours from banana and chilli to banana and honey. "It is just something completely unusual for the UK market but out in China it just seemed to be something that worked. You name it they have pretty much got it in any kind of sweet flavour. "It's something completely different to us, something new to us, and something we wouldn’t ever have necessarily wanted to launch as a first-off in the UK. "The product is developed and ready to go. We’ve had small local cafes and delis (in the UK) all quite interested in it, to some of our larger retail customers saying they wouldn’t put it past ever putting it on their shelves. "Who knows, we’ll have to test the water in China and if it does prove to be really successful maybe adapt it and see if we can do a limited edition or special buys in this country just to give the consumer here the chance to pick them up.” Blairgowrie technical writer, Andy Meeson, said he could get "seriously addicted" to the strawberry crisps. He added: "That is unusual because you do get the strawberry flooding out, it starts off tasting very much of strawberry and then it starts to taste of crisp." Chloe Gruneber-Mackenzie, a student from the Angus town, said they were "unusual but kind of nice", adding: "It tastes like strawberry ice cream but in a crisp. I think I would buy that actually." Retired Perth software engineer, Rob Burke, 65, said: "I think they are nice. I don't know I’d eat them every day but they’re not bad. It does actual taste like strawberry."