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...
East Fife boss Willie Aitchison was left scratching his head by his side’s poor showing in their home defeat by Ayr. Aitchison watched his side ship goals to Michael Moffat and Scott McLaughlin while Michael Donald bagged a brace. Liam Buchanan’s penalty was the Fifers’ consolation. It was a frustrating 90 minutes for Aitchison who said he was left puzzled by the performance. He said: “We can’t go on the pitch for them, all we can do is coach them. The coaching and preparation for the game had been absolutely fantastic. “The boys were up for it but the simple fact is they just didn’t produce it on the day.” Craig Johnstone had fired inches wide for East Fife as the home side looked to make a positive start to the game. Ayr took the lead, though, when the Fifers gave the ball away just outside their own area and were punished by Donald who fired past Greg Paterson. East Fife struggled to get back into the game and it was soon 2-0 with the Methil men again guilty of slack defending. Moffat was allowed far too much time on the edge of the box and he punished Aitchison’s men by firing into the top corner. Bottom-of-the-table East Fife were gifted a chance to get back into the game on the stroke of half-time when Buchanan was bundled over inside the box by Martin Campbell, giving referee Iain Brines little option but to point to the spot. Buchanan stepped up to take the penalty and sent David Hutton the wrong way. Any hopes the Fifers had of getting themselves on level terms were dashed early in the second half when McLaughlin’s fine header looped over the head of Paterson. The game was wrapped up in the dying minutes when Donald tapped home from close range to complete the home side’s misery.
A lawyer has questioned whether an unmarried mother at the centre of a legal battle to access widowed parent’s allowance is being made an example of.Special needs classroom assistant Siobhan McLaughlin, 46, from Armoy in Co Antrim, was with her partner John Adams, a groundsman, for 23 years. The couple had four children – Rebecca, 15, Billy, 16, Lisa, 21, and Stuart, 23.Following Mr Adams’s death from cancer in January 2014, Ms McLaughlin was refused widowed parent’s allowance because they were not married or in a civil partnership.She applied for a judicial review of the decision, claiming unlawful discrimination based on her marital status and won her original court case, later overturned by the Court of Appeal.Ms McLaughlin has now applied to the Supreme Court, sitting in Northern Ireland for the first time, for judicial review and hopes her legal challenge will help other families.Her lawyer, Frank O’Donoghue QC, asked the court: “Is there a defensive aspect to this legislation, holding up Ms McLaughlin as an example to what might happen to you if you don’t get married?”Mr O’Donoghue said Ms McLaughlin should be treated in the same way as a married couple with children after the death of the main earner. “The court should require the state, as we prepare to enter the third decade of the 21st century, to justify this obvious difference in treatment, beyond the rather simplistic and rigid explanation that one widow was married and the other was not,” he said.“A more inclusive measure could have and should have been used. As a bare minimum, entitlement to widowed parent’s allowance on the part of cohabiting unmarried parents and children is required.”Mr O’Donoghue said the benefit is not for the married couple but for the survivor and children and claimed there is no evidence proving current restrictions promote marriage.He argued changing the regulations would not create a significant additional administrative social security burden.The court also heard from Helen Mountfield QC on behalf of the Child Poverty Action Group, who argued the ruling is incompatible with international law and “penalises” children whose parents are not married, treating them as “less worthy”.Earlier, Ms McLaughlin said: “It is wrong that a child born out of wedlock is not seen as deserving as one born to a married couple.”She had to supplement her income by taking on additional evening cleaning work after her partner’s death and said thinking about the difference the benefit would have made is “heartbreaking”. Ms McLaughlin said: “It might have meant that I could have been at home every night to prepare the supper, as I had been when John was here.“But because I had to go back to work, I am no longer there – so not only did they (the children) lose their dad, they also lost me and that stability.”She added: “It was a family unit. The children have John’s surname, his name is on their birth certificates.”The case, at the Royal Courts of Justice, continues.
An unmarried mother behind a legal battle to access widowed parent’s allowance has accused the Government of treating her grieving children as “insignificant”.Siobhan McLaughlin, 46, said her case, being heard at the Supreme Court sitting in Northern Ireland for the first time, was never about her but about justice for her children.The special needs classroom assistant from Armoy, Co Antrim, was with her partner John Adams, a groundsman, for 23 years and they had four children – Rebecca, 15, Billy, 16, Lisa, 21, and Stuart, 23.Following Mr Adams’s death from cancer in January 2014, Ms McLaughlin had to take on an evening job after being refused widowed parent’s allowance because the couple were not married nor in a civil partnership.She sought a judicial review of the decision, claiming unlawful discrimination based on her marital status and won her original court case, later overturned by the Court of Appeal.The Supreme Court heard her latest application for judicial review on Monday.Her lawyer, Frank O’Donoghue QC, asked the court: “Is there a defensive aspect to this legislation, holding up Ms McLaughlin as an example to what might happen to you if you don’t get married?”Mr O’Donoghue said Ms McLaughlin should be treated equally to a married couple with children after the death of the breadwinner. “The court should require the state, as we prepare to enter the third decade of the 21st century, to justify this obvious difference in treatment, beyond the rather simplistic and rigid explanation that one widow was married and the other was not,” he said.“As a bare minimum, entitlement to widowed parent’s allowance on the part of cohabiting unmarried parents and children is required.”Mr O’Donoghue said the benefit is not for the married couple but for the survivor and children and claimed there is no evidence proving current restrictions promote marriage.The court also heard from Helen Mountfield QC, for the Child Poverty Action Group, who argued the ruling is incompatible with international law and “penalises” children whose parents are not married, treating them as “less worthy”.Tony McGleenan QC, for the Department for Communities, argued against this.He said the eligibility stems from having children but the benefit is not for them, as it is described as a benefit for the survivor.He said marital status is a “non-suspect ground of discrimination” as it is not an inherent characteristic and can be changed, adding that benefits of this type “should make marriage more attractive” to some cohabiting couples.Lady Hale said a judgment will be made at a later date but warned the ruling sought does not oblige the Government to act.Speaking outside court, Ms McLaughlin, who was accompanied by her two youngest children, thanked supporters.She said: “This case was never about me. I would love to be recognised as a widow but I accept in the eyes of the law and the Government that I am not.“What I wasn’t prepared to accept was how the Government viewed my children – how they could treat my grieving, bereaved children as insignificant.“I am such a private person but to sit and accept that this is how it is made me say, ‘No, this is wrong’. “I want to look my children in the eye and say it is the Government at fault here, not you, and because of this I have tried to rectify this for you.”
Montrose boss Paul Hegarty was glad to see the back of a disappointing few days after his much-changed side lost at Broadwood. The Gable Endies were without eight injured players and Hegarty gave debuts to Hearts defender Jahmal Howlett-Mundle and Dundee midfielder Jesse Curran, who had been signed on short-term loans on Friday. The hosts led 2-0 at the break after goals from David Marsh and Michael Bolochoweckyj but a Gary Fraser strike gave Hegarty’s side a route back into the game. Hopes of a full recovery were dashed, though, when Scott McLaughlin hit a third for Clyde. Hegarty said: “It has been a pretty horrendous week. “Going out of the Scottish Cup to Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale on Tuesday night was very unpleasant and it was made worse by three players picking up injuries that will see them ruled out for weeks. “We started off brightly in this game. However individual mistakes cost us goals in the first half.” The game could have turned out differently had Fraser converted a great opportunity midway through the first half when the game was goalless but his half-hit effort was cleared off the line. Clyde took the lead on 26 minutes when Scott Linton launched a long throw into the Montrose box and David Marsh nipped ahead of Ross Salmon to touch the ball home after Mark McLaughlin had flicked on. The home side doubled the lead 10 minutes later when Bolochoweckyj headed home a corner. Hegarty’s half-time chat produced a reaction on 54 minutes when Fraser curled home a fine goal after being released on the left by Graham Webster, who came close to grabbing an equaliser just 60 seconds later. Clyde saw the game out with ease when Scott McLaughlin shot home after Salmon had done well to block a Scott Ferguson effort with 19 minutes to go.
Fife Council’s area education officer has been criticised for his evidence to an employment tribunal in which a teacher was awarded more than £28,000 for disability discrimination. John McLaughlin was described as evasive and lacking credibility by tribunal judge Ian McFatridge, who ruled that the local authority did not make reasonable adjustments to the working conditions of ME sufferer Shauna Shields. Ms Shields, of Markinch, wanted a role as a learning support teacher, allowing her to work with smaller groups of children. Mr McLaughlin told the tribunal the council had no such posts available and was not advertising them but three such posts were advertised at the time of the hearing. “The tribunal were less satisfied with the evidence of Mr McLaughlin,” Mr McFatridge stated. “Mr McLaughlin dealt with cross-examination in areas where he was uncomfortable by simply refusing to answer the question he was asked. The tribunal felt that on occasions he was evasive.” After 20 years at Collydean Primary, Ms Shields was diagnosed with fatigue syndrome in 2002. She became a supply teacher, allowing her to better manage her condition, but in 2008 the council returned to calling in supply staff on an ad hoc basis. She struggled at Dysart Primary, where she was given a full-sized composite class, and she then moved to St Agatha’s as a supernumerary. An occupational health report in 2009 indicated that small group work would benefit her condition and she asked about a learning support post which involved teaching small groups. The council refused her request and after a further supernumerary post at Falkland Primary she was made class teacher at New Gilston, which only had six pupils. Ms Shields did not get on with the head teacher and went off ill, starting a sequence of events leading to that school’s closure. In December 2012 Mr McLaughlin told her “the council could place her in any classroom post it wished”. In June last year she was fit to return to work but no post was found for her, leaving her without wages for 10 months and unable to claim benefits. Following her pleas for a learning support role, Mr McLaughlin sought an occupational health assessment of Ms Shields but he added his own notes to an official job specification. The judgment said his actions in doing so were “fairly unedifying”. Sharon McKenzie, the council’s head of personnel, said: “The council is looking at the findings and will take account of them.”
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
An Angus woman cut off all her hair in the bathroom as she told police she had to kill her husband. Louise Anne McLoughlin, 31, Ravensby Road, Carnoustie, appeared at Arbroath Sheriff Court following the incident on March 27. She admitted behaving in a threatening and abusive manner likely to cause fear and alarm by shouting and swearing at her husband Andrew McLoughlin and threatening to kill him at their home address. The court heard there was a “considerable background” to the case and that McLoughlin suffers from “mental health difficulties”. Depute fiscal Hazel Anderson said: “Both Mr and Mrs McLoughlin were under the influence of alcohol. He became concerned for his wife as she appeared to be in the bathroom cutting off all her hair.” Police arrived at the scene and, pointing towards her husband, McLoughlin told them: “I’m going to have to kill him.” Ms Anderson said McLoughlin blamed her husband for family difficulties. She said they were engaged in a heated argument by the time officers arrived. “Police attended and both were in a state of rage,” Ms Anderson told the court. “At that point both were arrested for a domestic breach of the peace.” In reply to caution and charge, McLoughlin stated: “It was just raised voices, nobody got hurt. End of.” When asked by officers if she had threatened to kill her husband she said: “Yes, but I do that every day.” Defence agent Stuart Mackie said his client has a “significant criminal history”. The court heard McLoughlin receives £300 per month in Employment Support Allowance and £400 a month in Disability Living Allowance. Sheriff Peter Paterson said he would fine McLoughlin the same £100 sum that her husband was charged for his part in the incident.
Ewan Scott has already claimed one of the world's most prestigious junior titles at his first attempt, but the youngster from St Andrews had to dig deep to stay in his own national championship at a wet and windy West Kilbride on Monday. The Madras College pupil, already a scratch player at 14 and rated as one of the best young prospects to come out of the Home of Golf for decades, became the first Scot to win the Reid Trophy the English championship for under-14s at the Kendleshire near Bristol last August. However at the Scottish Boys Championship he found himself in a battle royal with Martin Scott, a three-handicapper from Hamilton who seemed to have the better of the tie standing at two up with six to play. Scott fought back to win the next two holes but saw his opponent drain a 35-foot birdie putt on the 16th, only for the Lanarkshire county player to miss a six-footer on the next to set up real drama on the final hole. Martin was 10 feet inside Ewan in two on the home green but the St Andrian sank his birdie putt from 30 feet only for Martin to follow him in from 20 to keep the match tied. Finally Ewan's greater power won him the tie on the second extra hole, driving the green and two-putting for birdie to secure the win. "It was much tougher than I expected or planned, but I didn't play my best today and hopefully that's my bad game out of the way this week,'' said Ewan. Playing on the links at St Andrews and also a member at the Duke's, Ewan's victory in England last year was a big signal that he's set for a big future in the game. "I just saw it as being a big tournament with the top juniors in Britain if not Europe and that's the kind of competition I want to play in, so to win was a big thrill,'' he said.ObstacleEwan was runner-up in the Scottish Under-14s and third in the Under-16s, and his hopes of moving on this year face a pretty big obstacle in fellow National Academy member Paul McPhee in the second round. Even if Ewan doesn't progress beyond the fourth round he reached at Royal Aberdeen last year, such is his early development that he has another four shots at this championship yet to come. McPhee, the son of former Dundee United and Forfar full-back Ian, is on his last opportunity and won a tight 2 and 1 victory over Kyle Reid of Elderslie. The top quarter of the draw saw further success for Fife with the New Club's Josh Jamieson, Calum McKay (Scotscraig) and Craig Wilson (Pitreavie) coming through their opening matches, while McPhee was joined in the second round by fellow Perth and Kinross players Sean Gatsby (Crieff), Charlie Linton (Dunblane New), Bradley Neil (Blairgowrie) and Stephen Harrower (Kinross). Monifieth duo Grant Bowman and Scott Smith also moved through, Bowman requiring the full 18 holes before besting Fergus Smith of Paisley while Smith swept aside Jason Duncan (Newmachar) 4 and 3. There were no real surprises on the first day with the first three nominal seeds (there are no official seedings in the boys') all coming through. Reigning strokeplay champion Jack McDonald moved through 6 and 4 against Jordan Shaw (Kingussie), championship backmarker Conor O'Neil of Pollok had some struggles to shake off late entrant Cameron Cunningham 4 and 2, the Royal Mussleburgh player having come in to replace John Henry, the brother of two-time champion Scott. The toughest test came for Jack Scott from Deeside, who had to battle all the way before winning one up against Callum Gorrie from Kilmarnock Barassie. Round One A Young (Garmouth and Kingston) bt C McBride (Peebles) 5 and 4N Clenaghan (Mount Ellen) bt R Boyle (Bathgate) 4 and 3W Kerr (Craigmillar Park) bt S Moore (Greenock Whinhill) 3 and 2P Gordon (Paisley) bt M Anderson (Douglas Park) 4 and 3E Mackay (Craigielaw) bt C MacLean (West Kilbride) 4 and 2J McDonald (Kilmarnock Barassie) bt J Shaw (Kingussie) 6 and 4S Harrower (Kinross) bt C Burgess (Musselburgh) 5 and 4B Neil (Blairgowrie) bt R O'Connor (Uphall) 1 holeC Wilson (Pitreavie) bt G Miller (Bathgate) 5 and 4S Hall (East Renfrewshire) bt R Jack (Dumfries and Galloway) 1 holeJ Gallagher (Crow Wood) bt L Pacitti (Sandyhills) 2 and 1C Linton (Dunblane New) bt L alliday (Cardross) 6 and 5P McPhee (King James VI) bt K Reid (Elderslie) 2 and 1E Scott (St Andrews) bt M Scott (Hamilton) at 20thR Hislop (Pines) bt A Loch (Pumpherston) 2 holesB MacDonald (Torrance House) bt J Manson (Oldmeldrum) 2 and 1A Blaney (Liberton) bt J Bryce (Strathaven) 4 and 3S Gadsby (Crieff) bt R Calladine (Dunaverty) 5 and 3M Smith (Troon Welbeck) bt J Innes (Kirkcudbright) 6 and 5K Mustard (Elgin) bt P Timmons (Troon St Meddans) at 19thJ Jamieson (St Andrews New) bt I McDowall (East Kilbride) 4 and 2G Forsyth (Inverness) bt G Caldwell (Inverness) 1 holeJ Scott (East Renfrewshire) bt S Thorburn (Ayr Belleisle) 5 and 4G Roger (Clober) bt P Green (Forres) 1 hole.G Foley (Ralston) bt C Scott (Duddingston) 7 and 5S Gray (West Lothian) bt R Di Murro (Greenock) 3 and 2J Reid (Mount Ellen) bt L Campbell (Baberton) 4 and 2G Bowman (Monifieth) bt F Smith (Paisley) 1 holeG Smail (Craigielaw) bt C Boyd (Lanark) at the 19thS Watt (Old Course Ranfurly) bt C Lamb (Newmachar) 2 holesC O'Neil (Pollok) bt C Cunningham (Royal Musselburgh) 4 and 2E Bradley (Mount Ellen) bt G Balfour (Douglas Park) 4 and 3J Scott (Deeside) bt C Gorrie (Kilmarnock Barassie) 1 holeA McDougall (Elderslie) bt C Norman (Dullatur) 2 holesR Campbell (Grangemouth) bt A McMillan (Easter Moffat) at 22ndG Nicoll (Glenbervie) bt J Wright (Forres) 2 and 1S Smith (Monifieth) bt J Duncan (Newmachar) 4 and 3C Kirkwood (Bearsden) bt R Simpson (Bonnyton) 2 and 1C Forbes (Carnwath) bt G Barrowman (Clydebank and District) 3 and 2L Gaughan (Bathgate) bt R Storrier (Downfield) 1 holeA Carrick (Douglas Park) bt S Smith (Deeside) 2 and 1R Wilkie (Greenock) bt G Young (Williamwood) at 19thG Chalmers (Dollar) bt J Milne (Elgin) 3 and 2P Sangster (Thurso) bt L Morgan (Newbattle) at 19thG Ritchie (Troon Welbeck) bt E Robertson (Inchmarlo) 3 and 2E Douglas (Dunblane New) bt J Reid (Drumpellier) 3 and 2C Cromar (Aboyne) bt T Dingwall (Nairn Dunbar) 2 and 1S Costello (Kirkhill) bt M Manson (Fortrose and Rosemarkie) 1 holeA Borg (Penwortham) bt B Todd (Greenburn) 4 and 3A Tillie (Grangemouth) bt J Thorburn (Dunfermline) 4 and 2M Giovannetti (Douglas Park) bt G Paterson (Ranfurly Castle) 2 and 1F Thain (West Linton) bt G Dunsmore (Saline) 2 holesD Docherty (Bonnyton) bt J Savage (Cawder) 2 holesC McKay (Grange) bt A Collier (Balbirnie Park) at 19thN McArthur (Bishopbriggs) bt R Beattie (Hawick) 3 and 1L Johnston (Dumfries and County) bt A Ferguson (Paisley) 1 holeC West (Scotscraig) bt A McLachlan (Bonnyton) 1 holeL McAlpine (Invergordon) bt D Wright (Cathcart Castle) 9 and 8G Stewart (Crieff) bt L Carruthers (Powfoot) 2 holesG Forrest (Craigielaw) bt C Mitchell (Leven Thistle) 3 and 2F Brown (Nairn Dunbar) bt L Chambers (Cardross) 3 and 1J Williams (Castle Douglas) bt A Whyte (St Andrews New) 3 and 2C Porciani (Ayr Belleisle) bt C McLay (Bishopbriggs) 6 and 5S Burgess (Nairn) bt R McKenzie (Troon Welbeck) 4 and 3C Stewart (Brora) bt G Burns (Williamwood) at 19thR Gillan (Torrance House) bt B Gibson (Troon Welbeck) 5 and 4S Wearing (Bishopbriggs) bt N McGregor (Stirling) 1 holeR Gordon (Alford) bt J Nordbo (Largs) 3 and 2J Burrows (Pitlochry) bt A Carrell (Peterculter) 1 holeA O'Donnell (Greenock Whinhill) bt A Wiseman (Fraserburgh) 4 and 3D Thompsett (Aboyne) bt R Munro (Monifieth) 1 holeI Watson (St Andrews) bt A Easton (Strathmore) 3 and 2R Black (Alness) bt S McPherson (Burntisland Golf House) 3 and 2C Beveridge (Troon Welbeck) bt F Sandison (Blairgowrie) 2 holes
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.