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Angus & The Mearns

Angus woman takes up top Inner Wheel post

July 12 2017

An Angus woman has been appointed to one of the key positions of the Inner Wheel in Scotland. Susan Oliphant, from Forfar, has taken up the role of district chairman of the No 1 District, which has 27 clubs and 850 members. The area covers all of Tayside and Fife as well as Aberdeen and stretches up as far as Elgin and Inverness and even to the Isle of Skye. Susan will visit each club in the district as well as attending events in neighbouring districts and will attend the Association Conference in Bournemouth in March. She will also travel to the International Inner Wheel Convention in Melbourne, Australia in April next year. Susan has been a member of the Inner Wheel Club of Forfar for almost 20 years ago and joined under the new membership rules of a female relative of a Rotarian being allowed to join. “My father had been a member and past president of King’s Lynn Rotary Club so I applied to join the Inner wheel Club in Forfar, where my husband and I live,” she said. Since Susan jointed the Inner Wheel membership has opened up further. In 2012 the link to Rotary or Inner Wheel was no longer required and women who wish to join are invited to do so and follow the objectives of Inner Wheel which are to promote true friendship, to encourage the ideals of personal service and to foster international understanding. Susan has held a variety of roles at Forfar Inner Wheel including international service organiser, secretary, treasurer and president twice. She will host the district rally in May in Forfar with the association president visiting from Great Yarmouth in District 8. “My membership of Inner Wheel has been a time of making new friends, sharing new experiences and going to new places,” Susan added. “Friendship to me has been the most significant part of my membership of Inner Wheel”. Susan and her husband John recently semi-retired from their upholstery business Strathvale Furnishings in Forfar.

Motoring news

Join the queue for littlest Audi Q

November 9 2016

Audi’s relentless release of new models continues with the launch of its smallest SUV. The Q2 goes on sale in the UK next week with prices starting at £22,380. There’s an extensive selection of petrol and diesel power trains as well as the option of front or Quattro four-wheel drive. More models will be added to the range later on, including powerful SQ2 and RSQ2 versions. Aimed squarely at a younger audience, the Q2 has bolder, sharper lines and a different shape to Audi’s bigger SUVs, the Q3, Q5 and Q7. Although it’s clearly meant more for buzzing around cities than growling across farmland, cladding and skid plates lend it an aura of ruggedness. Audi is also offering a range of vibrant colours to deepen the Q2’s appeal to youthful buyers. The interior is as plush as you’d expect from Audi, justifying its price hike over similarly sized SUVs like the Nissan Juke and Honda HR-V. The materials are high quality – softtouch plastics, leather on higher spec cars and brushed aluminium trim elements all blended into a smart-looking package. As standard, drivers get a seven-inch infotainment screen on top of the dashboard. It’s operated through Audi’s rotary dial system that’s far more intuitive and easier to use when on the move than rivals’ touchscreen systems. Among the many options is Audi’s excellent Virtual Cockpit - a 12.3in screen that replaces the manual instruments behind the steering wheel. Overall, the Q2 is 4.7in shorter than the A3 hatchback, but Audi says there’s enough leg and headroom for two adult passengers in the back. Boot space comes in at 405 litres – 50 more than you’ll find in the A3 hatchback and rival Nissan Juke, although it trails the Mini Countryman by the same amount. To begin with, the only diesel option is a 1.6 litre with 114bhp, although a more powerful 184bhp 2.0 litre unit will be added to the range soon. Similarly, the petrol engine range is limited for now but will be expanded by the end of the year. The 1.4 litre, 148bhp unit offered now will be joined by 1.0 litre, 114bhp three cylinder turbo and 2.0 litre, 187bhp options – the latter coming with an S-Tronic automatic gearbox. When it arrives the 1.0 litre petrol version will be the cheapest model in the range with a price tag of £20,230. Courier Motoring has yet to get its hands on the car but early reviews have been very positive and Audi looks to have yet another winner on its hands. jmckeown@thecourier.co.uk

Man bailed in M20 murder probe

February 23 2018

A man who was arrested on suspicion of murder after the body of a woman was found on the M20 has been released on bail.The body was discovered by police on the London-bound carriageway near Ashford at 6.05pm on Tuesday. The road was closed between junctions 9 and 10 for nearly 24 hours while the scene was investigated.Officers appealed for the driver of a silver Nissan Qashqai to come forward and a man handed himself in at a police station on Wednesday evening, Kent Police said.On Friday morning the force said the man had been released on bail until March 15.The circumstances surrounding the death of the 32-year-old from Kent remain a mystery and detectives are continuing to investigate.A post-mortem is expected to take place at midday on Friday.Police are still appealing for drivers who were on the road at the time to check their vehicles for signs of a collision, and for anyone with dash cam footage or who saw a Nissan Qashqai with the registration KY15 WWX at the time of the incident to come forward.

M20 body identified as man arrested in murder probe

February 22 2018

Police have identified the body found on the M20 as a 32-year-old woman from Kent.A man arrested on suspicion of murder remains in custody, Kent Police said on Thursday afternoon.Officers discovered the body on the London-bound carriageway near Ashford at 6.05pm on Tuesday. The road was closed between junctions 9 and 10 for nearly 24 hours while the scene was investigated.Officers initially appealed for the driver of a silver Nissan Qashqai to come forward and a man handed himself in at a police station on Wednesday evening.The incident caused hours of delays with between six and seven miles of queues stretching back to junction 11 and a diversion was in place.The road reopened shortly before 3pm on Wednesday.An accountant from Ashford told Press Association of his shock at the scene he saw while driving on to the coastbound stretch of motorway at about 6.20pm on Tuesday while emergency services were on the opposite side of the road.The 21-year-old, who asked not to be named, said: “As I entered the motorway I expected to see a crash, when I suddenly realised that it wasn’t and unfortunately it appeared to be a body lying in the central lane with police and ambulance staff around it.“Because of the torches being shone by police (I could see) it appeared that the body had been struck by vehicles.“It was very shocking. It is not a sight I would want anyone to witness.“My condolences are with the family of the deceased.”Police are still appealing for drivers who were on the road at the time to check their vehicles for signs of a collision, and for anyone with dash cam footage or who saw the Nissan Qashqai with the registration KY15 WWX at the time of the incident to come forward.

Business news

Prestigious BP oil contract for Dundee project management training company

June 7 2017

Dundee-headquartered training provider 20/20 Business Insight has won a prestigious contract with one of the world’s leading oil and gas companies. The Broughty Ferry-based company, which also has offices in Aberdeen, London and the USA, has been awarded preferred supplier status under a master contract by BP for providing project management training globally. Ironically, the prestigious account has been won after 20/20 stepped away from its previous focus almost entirely on the oil and gas sector – adding BP to a diverse client portfolio that now includes Wood Group, Centrica, Balfour Beatty, British Aerospace, Hinckley Point, Network Rail, Diageo and Wm Grant. Chief executive officer Tony Marks, who said the new status came off the back of recent big contract wins within the nuclear power industry, added: “20|20 are delighted to have been awarded preferred supplier status under a master contract by BP for providing project management training globally. “It’s a great team performance in demonstrating our international capability and upstream oil industry experience to win this prestigious account.” 20|20 Business Insight, which employs 26 staff and had revenues of £2.84 million last year, is a full service, project management, business and leadership training and consulting company who deliver training courses and consulting services throughout the world. It is the largest independent provider of project management training courses in the UK. The consulting team work with companies to analyse competence baselines and deliver maturity assessments, design bespoke and accredited training programmes, create handbooks and manuals, implement project management procedures and protocols and then measure and report effectiveness. Mr Marks said that crucially, they had the ability to deliver internationally-accredited training and consulting anywhere in the world, primarily in oil and gas, engineering and construction, utilities, nuclear, food and drink However, despite an international outlook, they remained proud to be rooted in Dundee. “We are big fans of Dundee and supporters of the Tay Cities Deal to bring jobs, including de-commissioning, to Dundee,” he added. “When we started in 2003, we were almost exclusively in the oil and gas sector before diversifying into other sectors. We were lucky because two years ago the oil and gas sector started to decline, and accounts for around 10% of the work we do now.” Mr Marks has been involved in business for 27 years and has seen four or five cycles based on the oil barrel price changing. During that period, the level of business has come back smaller each time. “So it’s quite interesting we are back in the oil and gas sector now,” he added. He said the BP deal had been going on behind the scenes for nine months and “should mean quite a jump in business for us.” He added: “It’s not a guarantee of any level of work. But the revenue should be significant and comes off the back of other big contract wins.”

Motoring news

Audi showcases raft of new cars

June 29 2016

Audi threw everything it had at the Goodwood Festival of Speed last weekend, with no fewer than nine upcoming models making their UK debuts. One of the most interesting – and affordable – was the new Q2. Audi’s smallest crossover yet, it’ll sit underneath the Q3, Q5 and big ole Q7. It will be available as a front wheel drive or with Audi’s Quattro four-wheel drive system. Under the skin there’s a choice of three TFSI petrol and three TDI diesels, with Audi’s 1.0 litre three-cylinder petrol offering 114bhp, the 1.4 litre four-cylinder sitting below the 187bhp 2,.0 litre TFSI. Diesel options are the 1.6 litre TDI with 114bhp and a pair of 2.0 litre TDIs with 148bhp or 187bhp. It goes on sale later this summer with a starting price expected to be in the region of £20,000. At the other end of the price scale is the R8 V10 Spyder. The 553bhp supercar comes a year after the second generation coupe R8 was released. Audi reckons the new Spyder is 50 per cent stiffer than the last Spyder, and its canvas roof stows beneath a massive rear deck, able to open or close at speeds up to 31mph in 20 seconds. Fuel economy “improves” to just over 24mpg thanks to a new coasting function that idles the engine when it’s not needed. Expect it to cost around £130,000. In between those two extremes are a plethora of other upcoming Audis, including the new S5 Coupe, and the Audi TT RS which first revealed a year ago is hardly new but apparently it had never been seen in the UK before. A couple of Q7s were also at Goodwood, including the Q7 e-tron plug-in hybrid, which returns a claimed 156mpg, and the SQ7 – a diesel with 429bhp. There was also the refreshed A3 range. Audi’s upmarket Golf rival has been given a styling refresh along with a few new engine options. Following a trend for downsizing, there’s a 1.0 litre three -cylinder petrol unit, while a powerful 2.0 petrol engine also joins the range.

Motoring news

Form an orderly Q for Audi SUV

August 10 2016

First there was the Q7. Then the Q5 and Q3. All have been a phenomenal success for Audi. I’d be surprised if that script changes when the Q2 arrives in November. Audi’s baby SUV is available to order now with prices starting at £22,380. Can’t quite stretch to that? Don’t worry, an entry level three-cylinder 1.0 litre version will be available later this year with a cover tag of £20,230. From launch, there are three trim levels available for the Q2 called SE, Sport and S Line. The range-topping Edition #1 model will be available to order from next month priced from £31,170. While the entry-level 113bhp 1.0-litre unit isn’t available right away, engines you can order now include a 113bhp 1.6-litre diesel and 148bhp 1.4-litre petrol unit, both with manual or S tronic automatic transmissions. Also joining the Q2 line-up from September is the 2.0-litre TDI diesel with 148bhp or 187bhp. This unit comes with optional Quattro all-wheel drive. A 2.0 litre petrol with Quattro and S tronic joins the range next year. Standard equipment for the new Audi Q2 includes a multimedia infotainment system with rotary/push-button controls, supported with sat-nav. Audi’s smartphone-friendly interface, 16in alloy wheels, Bluetooth connectivity and heated and electric mirrors are all also standard for the Audi. Along with the optional Audi virtual cockpit and the head-up display, the driver assistance systems for the Audi Q2 also come from the larger Audi models – including the Audi pre sense front with pedestrian recognition that is standard. The system recognises critical situations with other vehicles as well as pedestrians crossing in front of the vehicle, and if necessary it can initiate hard braking – to a standstill at low speeds. Other systems in the line-up include adaptive cruise control with Stop & Go function, traffic jam assist, the lane-departure warning system Audi side assist, the lane-keeping assistant Audi active lane assist, traffic sign recognition and rear cross-traffic assist.

Giving priority to Test matches ‘a luxury’ for bigger countries, says Morgan

February 24 2018

Eoin Morgan fears the opportunity to salvage Test cricket’s primacy over short formats may already have been missed.At 31, England’s white-ball captain played the last of his 16 Tests more than six years ago, and has already publicly acknowledged more than once that his international future is exclusive to 50 and 20-over fixtures.He is nonetheless a notable voice in the debate about Test cricket’s status, and appears in little doubt that the threat from lucrative Twenty20 domestic franchise contracts is no longer a mere talking point but present and future reality.Two cases in point reside in his own England team following Alex Hales and Adil Rashid’s decisions in recent weeks to sign white-ball only contracts with their respective counties – and therefore effectively sacrifice any Test ambitions for the foreseeable future.“Test match cricket has had a lot to worry about for quite a while now,” said the Irishman.“If something was going to be done about it, it probably should have been done already.“There are still, I suppose, different ideas being thrown around – but actually giving priority to Test matches is sort of a luxury now for the bigger countries around the world.“For other countries, T20 franchise cricket takes priority.” Proposed measures to come to the aid of Test cricket have, of late, included the advent of day-night pink-ball fixtures and an inaugural four-day match.Morgan senses, however, that a correction of player finances from global administrators may yet be the most effective policy.“The best ideas probably being bandied around are putting most revenue behind the match appearances or actual prize money towards Test match cricket,” he said.“(Then) there’s no [influence] on what format people choose, simply because of the money they might make.“(Their decision) is all down to how good they are at that particular format.”As for the switches made of late by Hales and Rashid, Morgan is supportive.“I think it’s a really good decision for those individuals,” he added.“Every individual is different – they see their future and their pathway changing all the time, and it’s okay to be able to change it.“A lot of people actually are forced into a position to play one or two formats – which I think is wrong, because it’s their own career, it’s their own future.“They need to take hold of it and make the most of it while they can.”

Police name woman found dead on M20

February 24 2018

A woman who was found dead on the M20 has been named as Dominique Worrall.The 32-year-old’s body was discovered by police on the London-bound carriageway near Ashford at 6.05pm on Tuesday.A man who was arrested on suspicion of murder after officers appealed for the driver of a silver Nissan Qashqai to come forward has been released on bail, Kent Police said.The circumstances surrounding Ms Worrall’s death remain a mystery and detectives are continuing to investigate.Police are still appealing for drivers who were on the road at the time to check their vehicles for signs of a collision, and for anyone with dash cam footage or who saw a Nissan Qashqai with the registration KY15 WWX at the time of the incident to come forward.

Lengthy tailbacks on M20 after collision follows discovery of body

February 21 2018

Motorists on a major link to the Channel Tunnel and Dover port have been experiencing miles of tailbacks after a body was found on the road and a later collision forced police to close the M20 in both directions.Officers were called to the London-bound carriageway between junctions 10 and nine, near Ashford, Kent, at 6.05pm on Tuesday after a body was found. The person was pronounced dead at the scene.Then at 8am on Wednesday, four cars and a lorry were involved in a collision on the coast-bound carriageway, forcing it to be closed to all traffic. It has since reopened.The driver of the lorry, a 42-year-old man, has been arrested on suspicion of dangerous driving and remains in police custody.A woman was airlifted to a London hospital with injuries and a man was taken to a local hospital following the crash. Witnesses at the scene said they had been at a standstill for about two-and-a-half-hours.By 10.30am on Wednesday, drivers were experiencing six miles of queues back to junction 11 on the London-bound carriageway and the road closure was affecting travel to the Eurotunnel and the Port of Dover.The Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, which investigates incidents including murder and organised crime, is working with road collision investigators to determine the cause of death in the first incident, which is currently being treated as unexplained.Detective Chief Inspector Richard Vickery said: “I would like to hear from motorists who have dashcam footage taken between 5.30pm and 6.30pm on Tuesday February 20 of the M20 London-bound carriageway between junctions 10 and nine.“I would also ask motorists who used the M20 after 6pm on Tuesday to contact us if they believe they experienced anything unusual whilst driving and check their cars for signs of a collision.“We do not underestimate the impact that closing this stretch of the motorway has on people and I thank them for their patience. It is crucial that we ensure that all evidence is collected. As soon as the motorway is reopened the opportunity to collate potentially crucial information is lost.“We are working tirelessly at the scene and I am hopeful a lane of the M20 will be re-opened later today.”A large green screen has been put up where the body was found and a line of police officers wearing white protective covers on their feet has been seen slowly walking the stretch of the carriageway towards the screen while examining the surface.

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