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Summary

  1. MSPs to debate 'super ID database' plans
  2. Aberdeen City Council leaves umbrella group Cosla
  3. School apology over 'Palestinian terrorism' homework
  4. Pair held over jewel raid released
  5. Fred Goodwin's office put to new use

Live Reporting

By Thomas McGuigan, Graham Fraser and Brian Ponsonby

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Bye for now

That's all from the Scotland Live team for today. We're back again tomorrow from 07:00 with all the latest news, sport, travel and weather.

New £333m exhibition centre approved

Ken Banks

BBC Scotland North East reporter

Plans for a new £333m Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre have been approved by the full council.

AECC plan
Not specified

Henry Boot Developments is behind the project to replace the existing Bridge-of Don AECC, at a site in the Dyce area.

Council leader Jenny Laing said: "The new AECC represents a significant, but very affordable, investment for the city."

The plan includes two hotels. The current site would be used for housing.

Tonight's forecast

BBC Scotland Weather

Latest

A fine end to the day across most of the country. A few showers still continue to drift into the west coast and the Northern Isles, but becoming increasingly isolated.

The brisk north westerly winds continue to ease around Orkney, Caithness and the Moray Firth coast, but they will continue ease through the afternoon, and feeling milder than it has been.

This evening, thickening cloud and strengthening south westerly winds will bring rain into the Western Isles, affecting Wester Ross, Lochaber, Argyll and the Northern Isles overnight.

Winds will reach gale force in the Northwest.

Across southern, central and eastern Scotland, it will stay largely dry, with a touch of early frost in Aberdeenshire and the Borders, before cloud spills in and winds freshen.

Temperatures for most will level out at about 5C by morning.

Ex-footballer to fight driving ban

Ex-Scotland captain Colin Hendry is to

contest a driving ban on the grounds his "rare metabolism" would have affected his breathalyser reading.

Colin Hendry arriving at Blackpool Magistrates' court
PA

Hendry, 49, was stopped in Lytham, Lancashire, on 21 February, and later charged with drinking and driving.

The former Blackburn Rovers and Rangers defender admitted the offence at Blackpool Magistrates' Court.

But his solicitor said the level of alcohol consumed did not "correlate" to his breath sample reading.

Your reflections on the Forth Bridge

The Forth Bridge opened to the public on 4 March 1890, 125 years ago.

forth bridge 7 feb
Kit Carruthers

The cantilever railway bridge which spans the Firth of Forth from nine miles (14 km) west of Edinburgh city centre to North Queensferry in Fife, is one of Scotland's most famous and most-loved landmarks.

The anniversary was marked with a fly-past by a Spitfire and an RAF Typhoon.

BBC Scotland news website readers have sent us more images of the bridge than any other Scottish location.

Here is a selection of some of the best photos sent in over the past two years.

Man charged over Celtic tweets

A 29 year old man from Aberdeen has been charged over offensive tweets targeted at a Celtic player at the weekend.

Police Scotland said a report would be sent to the procurator fiscal and the man would appear at Aberdeen Sheriff Court at a later date.

Chief Inspector Murray Main said "We will take robust action when it comes to any form of hate crime whether the comments are said in the street or online."

Celtic beat Aberdeen 4-0 in a top-of-the-table clash at Celtic Park on Sunday.

Live football

BBC Radio Scotland

Celtic v St Johnstone LIVE on #BBCSportsound on BBC Radio Scotland 810MW/digital and

online

Lorry plunges off road into burn

Philip Sim

Tayside and Central reporter, BBC Scotland

A lorry driver was taken to hospital after his

tanker plunged down an embankment into a burn in a Perthshire village.

Lorry burn
Hazel McNab

The vehicle came off the A977 road in Powmill, near Kinross, at about 03:30, and landed in the Gairney Burn.

Police said the driver suffered a head injury, but was in a stable condition.

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency were informed of the incident and are investigating environmental concerns.

tanker crash
Hazel McNab
The Scottish Environment Protection Agency is aware of the crash

Votes at 16

Glenn Campbell

Political correspondent, BBC Scotland

MSPs have voted unanimously in favour of plans for the power to decide who can vote in elections to the Scottish parliament to be transferred from Westminster to Holyrood.

Ballot box
BBC

The UK government has agreed to fast track devolution of the election franchise, so that MSPs can lower the voting age to 16 in time for the 2016 election.

The independence referendum was the first national vote in which 16 and 17 year olds were allowed to take part.

Defeat for women's football team

Scotland fell to defeat to Canada in their opening game of the Cyprus Cup in Nicosia.

Anna Signeul has recently signed a new contract as Scotland boss.
SNS

Canada were ahead in the opening minutes when Jessie Fleming finished Christine Sinclair's cross.

The Canadians continued on the front foot for much of the first half though Anna Signeul's side grew in confidence.

However Canada continued to dominate and after Josee Belanger passed up an opportunity, she turned provider for Sinclair to make it 2-0.

Accident on M8

BBC Scotland Travel

Latest

#M8 Glasgow - an accident is blocking one lane westbound at J24 Helen Street. There are delays back to the start of the Kingston Bridge

Three men hurt in motorway crash

Three men have been injured following a crash involving several vehicles on the M74 motorway in South Lanarkshire.

Firefighters at crash scene
Scottish Fire and Rescue Service

Emergency services were called to the scene, at the J13 off-ramp, shortly after 07:45 on Wednesday.

Firefighters used hydraulic cutting equipment to cut two of the casualties free from separate vehicles.

All three injured men were taken to Wishaw General Hospital with injuries which the fire service were described as "not life-threatening".

Traffic latest

BBC Scotland Travel

Latest

#M80 is now open southbound at J6 Castlecary after an earlier accident was cleared but there are still long delays back to J8 with queuing to M876. It is also slow northbound between J5 and J6.

IT firm reveals expansion plans

A Borders IT firm has revealed

plans to take on 75 full-time staff over the next three years.

Computer
Thinkstock

Agenor, which is based at Newtown St Boswells, also wants to double its turnover in the same period.

The plans emerged as MSP Roseanna Cunningham visited the company to announce £245,000 of regional selective assistance for the firm.

The Cabinet Secretary for Fair Work, Skills and Training said the funding would guarantee more local jobs.

Agenor also has offices in Edinburgh, Amsterdam and Dubai.

What a read

The winners of the

Scottish Children's Book Awards for 2015 have been announced.

Winners of Children's Book Awards
Scottish Book Trust

They are Ross Collins for "Robot Rumpus", Alex McCall for "Attack of the Giant Robot Chickens", and Cathy MacPhail for "Mosi's War".

The writers came out as the most popular after 28,000 children across the country cast their votes in three different age categories.

Ministers reject data access concerns

Brian Taylor

Political editor, Scotland

At Holyrood,

Scottish Ministers have rejected complaints that plans for improved access to personal data involve "creeping towards" a formal ID card in Scotland.

Files on a shelf
Getty Images

The complaint came from the Liberal Democrats but was backed by other parties.

The plan is to allow 120 public bodies in Scotland to check the identity of individuals, using the long-established NHS register.

The Finance Secretary John Swinney said it was vital to know that people were who they said they were, especially when they were seeking services online.

He said it was also necessary to check who would be liable for the Scottish rate of income tax when Holyrood gains new powers.

He stressed there would be no access to sensitive information, particularly health records.

But Willie Rennie, the Liberal Democrat leader, said the scheme was too broad and did not require individual consent.

He warned it could generate an ID card by the backdoor. This was rejected by Mr Swinney.

McCall 'would be great Gers boss'

Rangers midfielder Nicky Law (left) believes Stuart McCall (right) would be a "fantastic" manager at the Ibrox club should he be offered the job.

Nicky Law and Stuart McCall
SNS

Present manager Kenny McDowall is serving his notice period and his future is uncertain with a new board poised to be appointed on Friday.

Law worked under former Rangers midfielder McCall at Motherwell.

"Stuart knows what it's all about here and that will stand him in good stead if he does get the job," said Law.

"He would be fantastic. He's a legend here for the great service he gave to the club as a player and I've got no doubt he would do the same as manager."

Man in court over bus sex attacks

A man has appeared at Glasgow Sheriff Court charged with sexually assaulting five females on various buses.

Glasgow Sheriff Court
BBC

Miloz Cwikliski, 35, from the Kelvinside area of Glasgow, is alleged to have indecently assaulted the women between 19 November 2014 and 26 February 2015.

His defence lawyer entered pleas of not guilty on his behalf.

A trial has been set for September this year.

Coming up

BBC Radio Scotland

on #Newsdrive after 17:00:

  • living standards up for workers but down for young people, says new report;
  • how long since you had flu? and
  • the secret to saving the Scottish wildcats - stop them mating with the local moggies!

Traffic tailback

BBC Scotland Travel

Latest

#M80 partially blocked southbound at J6 Castlecary due to efforts to recover overturned car. Queues back beyond J7 Haggs

Man convicted of raping young girls

A man has been

convicted of raping two young girls over a seven-year period between 1998 and 2005.

Muir Taylor, 28, was convicted of a catalogue of sexual abuse and rape against the two girls, who were aged five and 10 when the abuse began.

At the High Court in Glasgow the judge praised the victims, now aged 23 and 26, for having the courage to come forward.

Sentence was deferred at the High Court in Edinburgh.

Grounded ship under tow to Clyde

A cargo ship that ran aground in the north west Highlands is being towed to Inchgreen in Greenock on the Clyde for repairs.

Lysblink Seaways
PA

The Lysblink Seaways, which was carrying paper from Belfast to Norway, ran aground near Ardnamurchan Point last month.

It was later refloated and anchored in Scallastle Bay in the Sound of Mull.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency said work to tow the vessel about 172 miles (277km) down the west coast had begun.

Severely matted cat found in shed

A severely matted cat has been

found in a garden shed in Fife.

Ellie
Scottish SPCA

The Scottish SPCA believes it was stuck in the shed in Albert Street in Rosyth for days.

The elderly tabby cat, which has been named Ellie, was found on Monday. It is bald around the neck from where a collar was attached.

The cat is now at the Scottish SPCA's animal rescue and rehoming centre in Lanarkshire.

BBC Scotland Travel

Latest

#M74 northbound delays now at J5 Raith

Rangers statement to stock exchange

The Company has been informed that its Nominated Adviser ("NOMAD") does not believe that it can satisfy the London Stock Exchange in relation to its NOMAD obligations in respect of the appropriateness of the Company's securities to be admitted to AIM, and therefore the NOMAD has resigned as Nominated Adviser to Rangers with immediate effect.

Accordingly Rule 1 of the AIM rules for Companies will apply, and trading in the Company's AIM securities will be suspended with immediate effect. If the Company is not able to restore trading within one month, admission of the Company's securities to AIM will be cancelled.

If requested during the suspension period WH Ireland is willing to assist the Company to implement the necessary changes for WH Ireland or another Nomad to become satisfied as to the Company's appropriateness for AIM. If a Nominated adviser is appointed it may apply to the London Stock Exchange on behalf of the Company for trading to be restored.

The Directors are disappointed that this event has had to take place despite the considerable efforts they have made over the last few weeks and months against the backdrop of the general meeting requisition and wish also to record their appreciation to their outgoing NOMAD for all it has done for the Club.

Rangers shares suspended

Chris McLaughlin

BBC Sport

#Rangers NOMAD resigns and shares are suspended

Knifeman broke into OAP's home

A man has admitted attacking a pensioner and her son in her home whilst wielding a 12-inch knife, in an apparent case of mistaken identity.

Joseph Devenney, 36, and an accomplice armed with a gun, forced their way into Isobel McGregor's flat in Kirkintilloch, East Dunbartonshire, in April 2014.

They threatened to shoot the 63-year-old before assaulting her son, who had pleaded with the two men to leave.

A judge remanded Devenney in custody pending sentence next month.

Fixture amendment

BBC Sport

Scotland

Dundee v Celtic now Wednesday 18 March, kick-off 19:45 (postponed from Saturday 14 March due to League Cup Final)

BBC Scotland Travel

Latest

Listen up! #A96 Inverurie - delays both ways through the roadworks...affecting the Pitcaple to Kintore road.

Coming up at 16:00

BBC Radio Scotland

on #Newsdrive:

  • more on claims average UK household income is back to pre-crisis levels;
  • the latest on the Becky Watts murder investigation; and
  • compulsory microchipping for dogs in Scotland

CCTV issued over toddler assault

Police have issued CCTV images of a woman they are looking for

in connection with an assault on a toddler in Falkirk.

CCTV image
Police Scotland

Police were alerted by diners at Pizza Hut in the town's Central Retail Park after the girl, who was about two-years-old, was shaken and dragged along the ground by the woman, thought to be her mother, on Friday 6 February.

Police said they were "extremely concerned" for the child's welfare.

Officers have appealed for witnesses.

Birds of prey stolen

Two birds of prey have been stolen from a bird sanctuary in Balloch.

Harris hawks
BBC

The two Harris hawks were stolen during a break-in at the Loch Lomond Birds of Prey Centre and Loch Lomond Garden Centre.

Police said the theft took place sometime between 17:00 on Monday and 09:30 on Tuesday.

Officers have appealed for witnesses and said they were checking CCTV footage as well carrying out inquiries in the local area.

Energy bill

@BBCDouglasF

Douglas Fraser

Business and economy editor, Scotland

Sellafield nuclear clean-up to cost a lot more than the whole of North Sea Oil's...

McDowall: No quick return to glory

Rangers manager Kenny McDowall predicts it will take five years for a prospective new regime to restore the troubled club to former glories.

Kenny McDowall
SNS Group

He says the whole infrastructure of the Ibrox outfit has been depleted and believes it is vital Rangers make the right appointment when choosing a new manager.

McDowall, who is serving a 12-month notice period under the terms of his contract, says it would be up to any new board to contact him.

Harris hawks stolen

James Shaw

BBC Radio 5 live Scotland correspondent

2 Harris Hawks stolen from sanctuary at Loch Lomond. Police studying cctv and calling for witnesses to come forward.

Happy memories

Scotland captain Preston Mommsen hopes that recalling a famous 2012 victory over Bangladesh will inspire his side when they meet again in the World Cup.

Scotland cricket team
AP

Mommsen's side go into the Pool A match in Nelson on the back of three defeats.

But Bangladesh were their opponents when the Scots recorded their first win against a full member nation.

"We have very fine memories playing against them and hopefully they remember that as well," Mommsen told BBC Sport.

Tonight's match

@BBCSportsound

BBC Sportsound

tweets: Celtic v St Johnstone LIVE on #BBCSportsound tonight from 6:10pm on BBC Radio Scotland 810MW/digital (DAB/Virgin 930/Sky 0116) and online.

Class sizes increase

Bigger classes in Moray primary schools have been given the go-ahead by councillors.

Moray Council
Ryan Main

The authority said it was increasing the maximum size of P2 and P3 classes from 25 to 30 pupils for the next two full school sessions.

It is aimed at addressing teacher shortages, particularly in Elgin.

Up to £100,000 has been allocated to employ classroom assistants to "mitigate the impact" in the six schools expected to be affected.

Why will it be so hot?

Areas of north east Scotland could see temperatures of between 15-17C this weekend thanks to a weather phenomenon called the Foehn Effect.

John Hammond
BBC

BBC Weather's John Hammond explains what it is.