Scotland's papers: Sick pensioner left in street

Church weddings for same-sex couples are expected to be held for the first time in Scotland this autumn in what will be a "major milestone" for gay rights campaigners across the UK, according to The Herald.

Road safety campaigners have called for more cycle lanes after Scotland's first tram line death, writes The Scotsman. The paper says a 24-year-old woman died in hospital yesterday after she was hit by a minibus when her bike's wheels apparently became stuck in tram tracks and she fell into the path of traffic.

The National focuses on Theresa May's decision not to take part in a live television debate ahead of the election, despite the participation of Jeremy Corbyn. The paper quotes SNP Westminster leader Angus Robertson, who called her "weak and wobbly" and dubbed her the "U-turn queen".

Mrs May will pitch herself as the unifying leader of a "great national mission" as she seeks to rise above accusations of political cowardice after refusing to take part in the debate, says The Times.

The Daily Telegraph claims that a "new front" has opened up in the European refugee crisis. The paper says the number of refugees dying while crossing the western Mediterranean to Spain has more than tripled and now surpasses the numbers killed in Greek waters.

A grandad with motor neurone disease lay in agony in the street for 2.5 hours after breaking his hip in a fall outside his home in Lenzie because paramedics were "too busy to respond", according to the front page of The Scottish Sun.

The Daily Record devotes its front page to the sentencing to 15 years in prison for disgraced surgeon Ian Paterson. The paper recounts how he carried out countless operations on his patients under the guise that he was saving them from serious illness.

The Scottish Daily Mail also leads with the story and says Paterson was convicted of 17 counts of wounding with intent and three counts of unlawful wounding against 10 patients.

Nicola Sturgeon's popularity has "plunged into the red" for the first time amid a backlash over her crusade for independence and stewardship of public services, according to a poll published in the Scottish Daily Express.

Hundreds of commuters faced hours of misery on Wednesday after a train in the Mearns struck a cow, forcing a string of services to be axed, reports The Courier.

The Daily Star leads with the story of a woman who was "stalked" by a black panther. The paper says Emma Adam was left rooted to the spot as she watched the "snarling beast rip apart a fox it had captured in woods", near her home in Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Leicestershire.

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