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  1. Updates for Thursday 9 April
  2. More news, sport, travel and weather from 09:00 on Friday 10 April

Live Reporting

By Nichola Rutherford

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Nichola Rutherford

BBC Scotland

Thanks for your company on the South of Scotland Live page today. It's been another busy one!

I'll be here again from 9am tomorrow to bring you the very latest from across the region.

Fine end to the day

BBC Scotland Weather


It'll be a fine end to the day across the Borders and Dumfries and Galloway, with plenty of late sunshine, followed by a dry night with long clear spells.

Winds will be light and variable, and mist will form in the river valleys, as temperatures dip to around 5C.

A family's grief

The family of Dale Whillans, who died after a road accident in the Borders, have spoken of their grief.

Dale Whillans
Police Scotland

In a statement, they said: "It goes without saying that Dale was taken from us at far too young an age and we cannot put into words the devastation we are all feeling.

"Dale was a very popular and happy young man. He was such a big part of all of our lives and will never be forgotten.

"We are all deeply saddened by his death and would ask to be left to grieve in private at this sensitive time."

Tributes to RTA victim

A teenager has died from his injuries following a road accident in the Borders.

Dale Whillans, 18, was a passenger in a black Seat which left the road and landed in a field on Monday.

The amateur footballer from Hawick died in Edinburgh Royal Infirmary earlier today.

In a post on Facebook, Hawick Legion AFC paid tribute to the Mr Whillans, describing him as a "very popular lad who always had a smile on his face".

Taxis ordered off the road

Almost a third of taxis and private hire cabs stopped by police during spot checks in Dumfries were found to be unroadworthy.

police driver

Of the 18 vehicles examined, five were ordered off the road because of mechanical concerns.

A further eight were found to have minor faults but were allowed to continue to operate and five were given a clean bill of health.

The operation last Friday followed a similar one in Stranraer. Police Scotland said it is important that the public have confidence that they vehicles they hire are roadworthy and safe.

Melrose Sevens

Preparations are in hand for this Saturday's 125th Melrose Sevens, one of the region's biggest annual events.

Melrose Sevens

The Greenyards will see all the senior Borders clubs, plus several city teams, joined by four guest sides.

Glasgow Warriors return as holders of the Ladies Cup, and furthest travelled will be the North West University, from South Africa.

From England comes Aviva Premiership club Wasps, while the national side of Germany makes its first appearance at the world's oldest sevens tournament.

Tune in

Tune in to BBC Radio Scotland at 16:30 and 17:30 to hear the very latest news from the south of Scotland, broadcast from our studios in Selkirk and Dumfries.

We'll be back with more bulletins at 06:30, 07:30 and 08:30.

Saving paper and money

A move to stop printing out committee papers is expected to save Scottish Borders Council expects to save £17,000 a year.


The local authority currently spends £38,000 annually on printing and mailing papers for a range of meetings.

But now councillors have been issued with iPads to allow them to access committee papers online, as well as secure emails and calendars.

Councillor Michael Cook, corporate member for human resources and corporate improvement said: "Not only will this modernise the council and save us money, it will bring environmental benefits from reduction in paper usage.

"It will also be much easier for members of the public to access committee papers."

Listen up


BBC Sportsound

tweets: It's @OfficialQosFC v @RangersFC live on #BBCSportsound from 6:30pm on BBC Radio Scotland 810MW/digital & online.

Fully fashioned

Steve Brocklehurst

BBC News

It has become an international fashion brand, famous for luxury cashmere knitwear, but

Pringle of Scotland began life 200 years ago making underwear.

princess grace
Archives du Palais Princier de Monaco
Grace Kelly loved to wear Pringle knitwear

Its twinsets have been worn and loved by Hollywood film stars such as Grace Kelly and its Argyle diamond-patterned golf jumpers made the leap from the green to street fashion but Robert Pringle's firm began life in Hawick in 1815 making stockings and long-johns.

An exhibition charting the history of the firm, Fully Fashioned: The Pringle of Scotland, runs at the National Museum of Scotland from 10 April until 16 August.

Bus service criticisms

Colin Colthart

BBC Radio Scotland, Dumfries

Bus operator Stagecoach has defended its decision to end its direct service between Stranraer and Carlisle.

Stagecoach bus

The X75 service will now terminate in Dumfries, after the firm discovered that fewer than one in 10 commuters travelled the full journey. A spokeswoman said the change was necessary to protect the long-term future of the remaining service.

Stranraer councillor Willie Scobie said: "I think it is a further diminution of public transport services to the more rural parts, particularly to the west of the region, where people could catch the almost express service from Stranraer right through to Carlisle, and be in Carlisle at a reasonable time.

"It makes shopping trips less viable. You could catch the bus just before 8am and be in Carlisle by 11am and then the return service roughly about 2pm arriving back in Stranraer about 5pm, so there was a reasonable time. Now with the interchange at Dumfries, by the time you change bus you could add hours to the round trip."

Foxhunter Chase

Galashiels trainer Katie Scott saddles two-times Kelso winner Douglas Julian in today's £30,000 Crabbie's Foxhunter Chase over the Grand National fences at Aintree.

Douglas Julian will be ridden by Hawick teenager Tom Hamilton whose older brother Jamie piloted Tartan Snow to success in the equivalent race two years ago.

The race is at 16:05.

Missing teenager found

Missing Stranraer teenager Russell Collins has been found safe and well, according to police.

Wildfire risk

There is an

increased risk of wildfires in parts of Scotland over the next few days, according to organisations that monitor the threat.

Wildfire risk maps
Michael Bruce
The wildfire risk is mapped by the European Commission

Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) and Scottish Wildfire Forum (SWF) have issued the warning.

They said dry weather and large quantities of dead vegetation such as heather and pine needles had heightened the chance of the uncontrolled fires.

The warning of the increased risk is in place until 13 April.

Norovirus 'relapse'

Some hospital patients affected by a

norovirus outbreak have suffered a relapse after 48 hours without symptoms, according to the NHS.

norovirus bug
Science Photo Library

A total of 46 patients and 12 staff members at Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary have contracted the sickness and diarrhoea bug.

Ward 14 remains closed while three others have reopened.

Infection control manager Elaine Ross said the "unpleasant virus" is spread easily when people are together.

Hawick housebreaking

Police in the Scottish Borders are appealing for witnesses following a housebreaking in Hawick.


The incident happened overnight between Sunday and Monday at Howegate.

A quantity of medication was stolen, alongside other personal and electronic items which were in the property.

Sgt Lorraine Matthews said: "This was a very distressing incident for the resident and I'd urge anyone who saw any suspicious behaviour in the area at the time, or who has further information which can help with our enquiries, to come forward."

'Dazzling daffodils'


The National Trust for Scotland

tweets: The dazzling Daffodils are out at Threave Garden near Castle Douglas Come & take a stroll!

Threave Gardens

'Sam's the man'

The Southern Reporter's back page looks ahead to the Buccleuch Cup Day in Kelso on Monday.

Southern Reporter
Southern Reporter

GP's workload 'damaging'

Nine out of 10 GPs believe their

workload has at times a damaging effect on patient care, a survey by doctors' leaders has found.

Doctor writing script
Science Photo Library

Three-quarters of family doctors in Scotland who took part said the amount they have to do "at times has a negative impact on quality of care".

Scotland has the highest proportion of concerned GPs, according to the British Medical Association national survey.

A quarter (25%) said their workload was "unmanageable".

Hot nomination

A Dumfries and Galloway business has been shortlisted for the Scottish Food and Drink Excellence Awards.

Chilli Burns
Galloway Chillies

Galloway Chillies produces eight preserves from home-grown chillies and one of them, Chill Burns, has been nominated in the soups, preserves and accompaniments category.

The winners will be announced at an event at the National Museum of Scotland on 27 May.

Businesswoman Sheena Horner said: "It's an honour to have one of my products shortlisted for such a prestigious award, I was absolutely delighted that the judges rated Chilli Burns so highly."

Last bridge


last bridge over the Borders Railway has been installed as part of the construction of the new 30 mile route.

Border Railway bridge
Peter Devlin

A total of 95 bridges have been refurbished and 42 new bridges constructed on the railway between Edinburgh and the Tweedbank.

This footbridge at Harelaw provides a connection from Newton Village to the new station at Shawfair, south-east of Edinburgh.

Appeal over missing teenager

Police in Stranraer are appealing for help in tracing a 16-year-old missing since Tuesday evening.

Russell Collins is 5ft 9in, of slim build with brown hair.

He was last seen wearing light grey tracksuit bottoms, a light green jacket and white trainers.

Phone banking warning

Police Scotland have revealed that in addition to the

three victims deceived out of significant amounts of money in Galloway recently, a number of people have come forward to report receiving "scam phone calls".


A spokesman said: "A number of other near misses have also been reported to police where the scam has been identified before any monies have been transferred.

"Police Scotland ask that anyone who has been called, whether they identified the scam or are actually a victim, having transferred funds, should contact police immediately through 101."

Dry and sunny


BBC Scotland Weather


It will be dry and sunny this afternoon, with temperatures inland reaching 15 or 16C in the south-west, 17 or 18C in the Borders.

There will be a mainly light south to south-westerly breeze will keep it a few degrees cooler along the Solway Coast. There may be localised sea breezes on the Berwickshire Coast.

Radio Times

Don't forget to tune in to BBC Radio Scotland at 12:30 for your latest local news, sport and weather broadcast from our studios in Dumfries and Selkirk.

Boost ahead of Gers clash

Queen of the South received a boost last night when play-off rivals

Falkirk suffered a defeat at Livingston.

Scottish Championship

Tonight they face an in-form Rangers but striker Derek Lyle believes the Ibrox side are still vulnerable.

"We need to be as good on the night as we were last time, if not better, but they're still beatable.

"We have got players that can hurt them and we'll be going all out to win the game."

Southern Reporter hits the shelves

The Southern Reporter reports on a court case involving a Melrose pub owner.

Southern Reporter
Southern Reporter

'Birthday Bolt'

The Moffat News has hit the shelves with an unusual story involving a lightening strike, a centenarian and a team of firefighters.

Moffat News
Moffat News

Crunch match against Rangers

BBC Sport


Queen of the South manager James Fowler has injury doubts over Iain Russell and Michael Paton ahead of

the Scottish Championship game with Rangers.

Queen of the South beat Rangers 2-0 last time out at Palmerston
Queen of the South beat Rangers 2-0 last time out at Palmerston

Paul Burns and Mark Millar already ruled out.

Rangers captain Lee McCulloch begins a two-match ban after being sent off for elbowing Hearts' Osman Sow

That leaves manager Stuart McCall short in defence with Ricky Foster and Steven Smith injured, while striker Jon Daly and midfielder Tom Walsh are also out.

Third scam victim

A pensioner has lost

£18,000 in a phone banking scam.

Phone call

The 70-year-old woman from Newton Stewart is the third person in the area to have been conned out of a substantial sum of money recently.

On Monday a 78-year-old man in Stranraer lost more than £15,000 when a cold caller convinced him to move his money into a different account.

Two days earlier a woman aged 64 lost in excess of £12,000 in a similar scam, according to police.

Mouswald holiday park plans

A struggling Dumfriesshire holiday park is seeking to change the use of 10 caravans for permanent residential use.

The owners of Mouswald Lodge Park, which has made losses in five of the last six years, claim the move would ensure the future of the business and allow the conversion of a vacant mansion house in the grounds into six flats.

However, council officials say the application does not meet local planning rules and are recommending refusal.

Broughton's green energy

Villagers in Broughton could soon cut their hall running costs by creating green energy.

Jim Barton

The village hall committee has applied for permission to site 16 solar panels on land at the end of the adjacent car park.

It is hoped that income from the generated power will reduce energy and other costs associated with the hall.

The full planning application is being considered by Scottish Borders Council.

'Star's sharp start'

The back page of the Galloway News focuses on Dalbeattie Star and Threave Rovers.

Galloway News
Galloway News

'Hospital capacity concern'

The Galloway News hits the shelves today and it leads with a story about Castle Douglas hospital.

Galloway News
Galloway News

Election campaign issues

The rural economy, apprenticeships and opportunities for women will be among

the issues on the Scottish election campaign trail.


Both the Scottish Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats will set out how they will help rural businesses.

Scottish Labour leader Jim Murphy will meet young apprentices in Cumbernauld.

And in Midlothian, SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon will explain how the party will boost opportunities for women.

Traffic news

From 09:30 this morning temporary traffic lights will be in use on the A76 between Thornhill and Carronbridge. There's also signals in place at Enterkinfoot.

A convoy system is again in use for patching work at Newton Stewart - east of Newton Cottage - and there are also traffic controls at the new vehicle check point at Glenluce and at Mossyards near Gatehouse.

Traffic signals also remain in use on the A77 north of Cairnryan. No problems to report with Irish Sea ferry services or local rail travel.

A fine and warm day

BBC Scotland Weather


Another fine and warm day in store for today with temperatures reaching 15C or 16C in the west, 17 or 18C in the east,

Some thin high level cloud at times but otherwise plenty of sunshine today and into the evening. Winds generally light but a cooling breeze along the coast.

Nichola Rutherford

BBC Scotland

Welcome to Thursday on South of Scotland Live.

Today's front page shows the River Tweed at Kelso.

I'll be here until 5pm with the latest news, sport, weather and travel from across the region.