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Motoring news

Audi’s new Q cars

April 12 2017

Another week, another new Audi. Two new Audis, in fact. The German car maker has announced a couple more additions to its Q line up of SUVs. The Q4 is a coupe-SUV hybrid that will go up against the BMW X4 and Mercedes GLC Coupe. As its name suggests, it’ll be positioned between the compact Q3 and bigger Q5. At the other end of the scale is the Q8, which will go head to head against the Range Rover. It’s lower and sleeker than the Q7 Audi is also producing. In concept form, it sat only four people, although it seems likely the production version will be a five seater. There’s a 630 litre boot as well. Eagle eyed Audi followers will notice the only SUV slots left to fill are the Q1 and Q6. Watch this space...

Scotland

Judy Murray getting honorary degree from Glasgow University

June 9 2016

The mother of tennis ace Andy Murray is to be awarded an honorary degree from Glasgow University. Judy Murray is being made a Doctor of the University in recognition of her contribution to tennis at grassroots and professional level. The coach is mother to both former Wimbledon champion Andy and his brother Jamie, a former world number one doubles player. She was a former national coach for Scotland and has previously been awarded honorary degrees from Stirling and Edinburgh universities. The 56-year-old is one of 22 people being honoured by Glasgow University at a ceremony on Wednesday June 15. Former Solicitor General for Scotland Lesley Thomson QC and the university's Professor Jim Hough, who fulfilled his lifelong quest to discover gravitational waves, are among the others. Scottish rugby stars are also being recognised, with former Scotland players John Beattie, Alastair Kellock and Gregor Townsend all receiving honorary degrees. Glasgow University principal Professor Anton Muscatelli said: "It is a privilege and honour for the university to confer honorary degrees on such outstanding men and women. "From our part in the discovery of gravitational waves, which the world celebrated in February, to achievements in sport and charitable ventures, to name but a few, we can truly be proud of the inspiring people around us." ends

Dundee

Judy Murray receives honorary doctorate from Abertay University

November 25 2016

Judy Murray said she is determined not to "waste" opportunities afforded by her sons' successes, as she received an honorary doctorate from Abertay University. The mother of two world number one tennis players in Andy and Jamie, she received an honorary doctorate in education for her services to sport and for her ongoing initiatives to improve accessibility to tennis. In a period of unprecedented success in tennis for the UK, owing almost entirely to the Murray family, the grandmother of one was given the limelight on this occasion. She said: "This is a very proud moment for me. "It's lovely to be recognised for what we've contributed as a family to sport in Scotland. "However, I hate that Scotland has this awful obesity tag when we obviously want to be a healthy nation. "I recognise there is a huge opportunity to grow the game against the excitement generated from the success that my boys have both had and I'm determined that there will be a legacy. "I never would have imagined that they'd end up where they are and that tennis would be in this position where everyone is talking about it and it's being shown on television in pubs and things. "I'm just so determined that we don't waste this opportunity." Some of her best known initiatives include Miss-Hits, a starter tennis programme for girls aged five to eight and Tennis on the Road, a programme seeking to improve access to the game for rural areas. Also receiving recognition yesterday was computer game music composer Rob Hubbard, who received an Honorary Doctorate of Music for his pioneering work in the gaming industry. He is best known for his experimental work writing and programming gaming theme tunes in the 1980s, specifically for his work unlocking the musical potential of the Commodore 64. He said: "I'm just an ordinary guy so it's quite overwhelming to be recognised in this way. "When I first moved to California in the 1980s to work for EA Sports, video games were just taking off and I thought the popularity would just last a year or so. "All these years later and the industry is massive, with Dundee and Guildford carving themselves out as the hub of the industry in the UK." Author of two acclaimed books on the science of high performance, Matthew Syed, also received an Honorary Degree of Liberal Arts. He is a former international table tennis champion and columnist for The Times.

News

Python star Terry Jones collects honorary degree from St Andrews University

June 26 2013

St Andrews University has honoured one of Britain’s most loved comedians at a graduation ceremony. Terry Jones, a member of Monty Python’s Flying Circus, was awarded the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters in front of scores of International Relations graduates on Tuesday. Dr Chris Jones, who presented the honorary degree, said: “Monty Python changed British society fundamentally forever with its irreverent, anarchically surreal and iconoclastically anti-authoritarian humour that has given us so many catchphrases and images, now engrained in our culture. “Python is sometimes said to be to comedy what the Beatles were to pop music, and Jones is acknowledged, by the other members of the group, to be at the very heart of Monty Python.” Alongside his television success, Mr Jones has also had a successful career as a writer, penning a revolutionary reanalysis of Chaucer’s A Knights Tale, as well as The War on the War on Terror, a collection of articles attacking US intervention in the Middle East. Professor Christopher Brown CBE, an art historian, was also given an honorary degree at the ceremony. Professor Brown transformed the Ashmolean museum of Art and Archaeology in Oxford, while also being renowned as an expert on 17th-century Dutch and Flemish art. Presenting the honorary degree, Art History Professor Brendan Cassidy, said: “Christopher Brown has been honoured for his outstanding contribution to British cultural life and to scholarship. “He is not only one of the most distinguished and successful museum directors of his generation but also the pre-eminent British authority on Dutch and Flemish art of the 17th century.”

Road tests

Audi Q2 puts quality over size

March 21 2018

Audi’s Q2 was one of the first premium compact SUVs on the market. It sits below the Q3, Q5 and the gigantic, seven seat Q7 in Audi’s ever growing range. Although it’s about the same size as the Nissan Juke or Volkswagen T-Roc, its price is comparable with the much larger Nissan X-Trail or Volkswagen Tiguan. Even a basic Q2 will set you back more than £21,000 and top whack is £38,000. Then there’s the options list which is extensive to say the least. My 2.0 automatic diesel Quattro S Line model had a base price of £30,745 but tipped the scales at just over £40,000 once a plethora of additions were totted up. Size isn’t everything, however. In recent years there’s been a trend of buyers wanting a car that’s of premium quality but compact enough to zip around town. It may be a step down in size but the Q2 doesn’t feel any less classy than the rest of Audi’s SUV range. The interior looks great and is user friendly in a way that more mainstream manufacturers have never been able to match. The simple rotary dial and shortcut buttons easily trounce touchscreen systems, making it a cinch to skim through the screen’s menus. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4eQ5p5Z7-Ek&list=PLUEXizskBf1nbeiD_LqfXXsKooLOsItB0 There’s a surprising amount of internal space too. I took three large adults from Dundee to Stirling and no one complained about feeling cramped. As long as you don’t have a tall passenger behind a tall driver you can easily fit four adults. At 405 litres the boot’s big too – that’s 50 litres more than a Nissan Juke can muster. Buyers can pick from 1.0 and 1.4 litre petrol engines or 1.6 and 2.0 litre TDIs. Most Q2s are front wheel drive but Audi’s Quattro system is standard on the 2.0 diesel, as is a seven-speed S Tronic gear box. On the road there’s a clear difference between this and SUVs by manufacturers like Nissan, Seat and Ford. Ride quality, while firm, is tremendously smooth. Refinement is excellent too, with road and tyre noise kept out of the cabin. It sits lower than the Q3 or Q5 and this improves handling, lending the Q2 an almost go-kart feel. On a trip out to Auchterhouse, with plenty of snow still on the ground, I was appreciative of the four-wheel drive as well. The Q2 is expensive – though there are some good finance deals out there – but you get what you pay for. Few cars this small feel as good as the Q2 does. Price: £30,745 0-62mph: 8.1 seconds Top speed: 131mph Economy: 58.9mpg CO2 emissions: 125g/km

Scotland

Dundee University to honour key V&A project supporter

June 9 2012

One of the leading players in the £45 million V&A project, global adventurer Mark Beaumont and renowned concert pianist Murray McLachlan are among the leading lights set to be to be honoured by Dundee University. Sir Mark Jones, who was director of the Victoria & Albert Museum in London from 2001 to 2011, will receive an honorary degree from the institution during its graduation ceremonies later this month. The university is one of the partners in the Dundee project, which will see the creation of a design centre and exhibition space in an iconic building by the Tay. Designed by Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, the building is scheduled to open in 2015. Also among the 11 honorary degree recipients will be adventurer Mr Beaumont, who was born in Perthshire and went to Dundee High School. His exploits include cycling around the world and rowing to the North Pole. Dundee-born concert pianist Mr McLachlan will also receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree, as will retired Dundee University professor Peter Howie, who played an important part in the development of its medical research and coined the slogan Help Dennis Beat The Menace for the cancer research appeal publicised by the Beano character. Fife-born Anne-Marie Rafferty, dean of the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing in London, will also be honoured. The other recipients are scientists Professor Iain Mattaj, Dr Malcolm Skingle, Dr Bernard Pecoul, Professor Stephen O'Rahilly and Professor Peter Boyle, and South African judge Albie Sachs. University principal Professor Pete Downes said: ''Our honorary graduands reflect the vision and ambitions of the university itself, people who have transformed lives in the UK and around the world. ''All of our honorary graduands are among the highest achievers, clearest thinkers and most respected voices in their fields. They are an inspiration to all our students.''

Fife

St Andrews University to honour Kate Adie

June 21 2010

War reporter Kate Adie and the former head of MI5 Baroness Eliza Manningham-Buller are among those who will receive honorary degrees from St Andrews University this week. Ms Adie is best known as BBC foreign correspondent throughout the 80s and 90s, often reporting from the world's most dangerous war zones. She holds honorary degrees from a number of universities and is honorary professor of journalism at Sunderland University. Baroness Manningham-Buller headed MI5 from 2002 to 2007, during which time she was credited with making the agency more open under her tenure the organisation made terror risk assessments public for the first time. She will be awarded a doctor of science degree, while Ms Adie is to be made a doctor of laws. Other notable figures to be awarded honorary doctorates include Olympic gold medallist Dame Mary Peters, Estonian composer Arvo Part, bipolar disorder expert Professor Kay Redfield Jamison, and the inventor of magnetic resonance imaging Professor John Mallard. Mr Part was due to be honoured last year but was unable to travel to Scotland because of ill-health. All will collect their honours during a series of degree ceremonies to be held in the Younger Hall, starting tomorrow for four days, to be presided over by university chancellor Sir Menzies Campbell. Previous recipients of honorary degrees from St Andrews include Bob Dylan, Michael Douglas, Denis Law, Dame Judi Dench, and J. K. Rowling.

UK & World

This student took his Tinder profile to the next level by turning it into a PowerPoint presentation

February 21 2018

Standing out from the crowd on Tinder can be tough, but with the help of Microsoft PowerPoint a British student has managed just that – and gone viral in the process.Sam Dixey, a 21-year-old studying at Leeds University, made a six-part slideshow entitled “Why you should swipe right” – using pictures and bullet points to shrewdly persuade potential dates to match with him on the dating app. The slideshow includes discussion of his social life and likes, such as “petting doggos” and “laser tag”, and “other notable qualities and skills” – such as being “not the worst at sex” and “generous when drunk”.It even has reviews mocked up from sources such as “Donald Trump”, “Leonardo Di Capri Sun” and “The Times Guide to Pancakes 2011”.Sam told the Press Association the six-slide presentation only took about 20 minutes to make and “started off as a joke”.However, since being posted to Twitter by fellow Tinder user Gracie Barrow, Sam’s slideshow has been shared tens of thousands of times across social media.So, it’s got the seal of approval form Gracie, but how has the slideshow fared on Tinder? “I’d have to say it has been pretty successful,” Sam said. “Definitely a clear correlation of matches and dates beforehand to afterwards.“Most of the responses tend to revolve around people saying ‘I couldn’t help swipe right 10/10’ but I’ve had some people go the extra mile and message me on Facebook.“Plus some people have recognised me outside, in the library and on dates.”A resounding success.

Scotland

Author Val McDermid to receive honorary degree from Dundee University

June 5 2013

Bestselling crime writer Val McDermid will be awarded an honorary degree from Dundee University. Mary Schwartz, director of a skin disease charity, and Deyan Sudjic, director of the Design Museum in London, will also be honoured at the university's summer graduations. They will all receive an honorary doctor of laws at a ceremony in the Caird Hall later this month. Professor Pete Downes, principal and vice-chancellor of the university, said: "In choosing our honorary graduates we are looking for the best possible role models for our students and staff, and we are mindful of excellence, inspirational quality and integrity. "These are all qualities displayed in abundance by our distinguished guests." McDermid published her first crime novel in 1987 and has penned more than 30 books. She was awarded the CWA Cartier Diamond Dagger Award by the Crime Writers Association in 2010 for her work, which has also been adapted for television series Wire In The Blood. She has worked closely with Sue Black, professor of anatomy and forensic anthropology at Dundee University, and backed the campaign to build a state-of-the-art morgue in the city. Ms Schwartz is director of the charity PC Project, which focuses on the debilitating skin disease pachyonychia congenita. She has worked with Professor Irwin McLean and Dr Frances Smith at Dundee University, who discovered four of the five genes that cause the disease. Mr Sudjic has published numerous books on design and architecture and was made an OBE in 2000. In 2004 he was awarded the Bicentenary Medal of the Royal Society of Arts for the promotion of design and is an honorary fellow of the Royal Institute of British Architects.

Scotland

Honorary doctorate for boxer Dick McTaggart

July 9 2010

All true aficionados know boxing is at least as much an art as a sport. Now Dundee"s Olympic legend Dick McTaggart has the credentials to prove it. He has received a honorary degree of doctor of arts from Abertay University and the delighted ex-champion said, "Now I am Dr Dick!" Now in his mid-70s, Dick was the third youngest of 18 children brought up in the Dens Road area. He started boxing aged 10 and became one of the greatest amateurs in the world. In addition to his gold medal in the 1956 Olympics, he was also Commonwealth and European champion and he won 610 of his 634 bouts. The city has already honoured him by naming a sports hall after him. Ray Lloyd, head of Abertay's school of social and health sciences, told the audience in the Caird Hall that Dick was notable for his "quick hands, quick feet and even quicker thought." The late sports commentator Harry Carpenter had described him as the greatest amateur boxer he had ever seen, he said. Asked how he ranked the honorary degrees among his many awards over the years, Dick said, "The MBE was the first, this is definitely the second. It is lovely to be recognised." Also receiving an honorary degree was BBC Scotland's political editor Brian Taylor, who was a pupil at Dundee High and studied at St Andrews before going on to a long, distinguished career in journalism and broadcasting. He said, "It's a tremendous honour to get this award..."Having been through perhaps a couple of decades of difficulty, in the last few years I see a tremendous growth, a rebirth of a sense of self-worth in Dundee, a sense of civic pride. "It is driven by the arts, and by its citizens, but primarily by its two great universities and I am very proud to be an honorary graduate of one of them." His advice to the students graduating yesterday was to "keep calm and carry on." He said, "We are entering difficult times economically but I am sure that they have gained a tremendous grounding and opportunity from the university and I wish them all the very best." Also receiving honorary degrees were National Trust for Scotland chairman and conservationist Dick Balharry, born in Muirhead, by Dundee, and retail expert Professor John Dawson. Around 900 Abertay students celebrated, graduating in front of family and friends, coming up to be capped by university chancellor Lord Cullen.

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