Ma tha sibh airson ur n-ainm a chur ris an athchuinge gu h-àrd, chan eil
agaibh ach gu 5 Dùbhlachd 2008 airson sin a dheanamh. Bidh an athchuinge a'
dol gu foirmeil chun Phàrlamaid air 08.12.08 agus beachdaichidh Comataidh
nan Athchuingean air a' chuspair aig a' choinneamh aca air Dimàirt 16.12.08
aig 2.00f - Seòmar Comataidh 1. Tha còrr is 1000 neach air an ainm a chur
ris an athchuinge gu ruige seo. Airson tuilleadh taic a chur ris an iomairt
seo, chan eil agaibh ach putadh air
Feuch an innis sibh seo dha ur caraidean.
If you would like to put your name to the above petition, the deadline for
this is 5 December 2008. The petition will formally be submitted to the
Scottish Parliament on 08.12.08 and the Public Petitions Committee will
discuss the subject at its meeting on Tuesday 16.12.08 at 2.00pm – Committee
Room 1. More than 1000 people have so far supported this petition. To add
your name. the link to the website is
Please let other Gaelic supporters know about this.
For more information, please contact email@example.com
TACHARTASAN GÀIDHLIG AN LUNNAINN
ANNS NA SEACHDAINEAN A THA A’ TIGHINN
(29mh Samhain 2008 gu crìoch na bliadhna)
GAELIC EVENTS IN LONDON IN THE COMING WEEKS
(29th November 2008 until end of the year)
Uill, a-réir coltais, mar a’s duirche is a’s fhuaire a dh’fhàsas e, ’s ann a’s beothaile a dh’fhàsas e ... a thaobh saoghal nan Gàidheal an Lunnainn co-dhiùbh! Ged a tha e fliuch is fuar taobh a-muigh, tha mìos làn ghnìomhachasan romhainn eadar seo is àm na Nollaige (faicibh gu h-ìseal). Fileantach, neach-ionnsachaidh no ‘caraid do’n chànan’ – chan eil gu diofar: bithibh ’nur pàirt dheth – is mealaibh e!
Well, as it would seem, the colder and darker it gets, the livelier it gets ... at least as regards the Gaelic scene in London! Though it may be cold and wet outside, we have a month full of activities to look forward to between now and Christmas (see below). Native-speaker, learner or ‘friend of the language’ – it doesn’t matter: be part of it – and enjoy!
PS/ Ma bhios sibh a’ cur air dòigh thachartasan a tha comh-cheangailte ri Gàidhlig no ris a’ chultur Ghàidhealach an Lunnainn no an Ceann Ear-dheas Shasainn ’san àm ri teachd, cuiribh fios chugam mu’n deidhinn! – If you are organising future events relating to Gaelic or to Highland culture in London or the South-East of England, let me know about them!
PPS/ ’S e Là Féill Anndra am-màireach! – St. Andrew’s Day tomorrow!
Di-Sathairne, 29mh Samhain 2008, bho 7:30f
Comunn na Gàidhealtachd is nan Eilean an Lunnainn (HISL), Taigh Cecil Sharpe, NW1 (Fon-talamh: Camden Town)
Òrain Ghàidhlig bho Chaitlin Ghreumach (Eilean Sgitheanach), is ceòl bho Frank Reid is a chòmhlan-dannsa Albannach
Inntreas: £20 / £15 (buill HISL is ‘lùghdachaidhean’)
Saturday, 29th November 2008, from 7:30pm
Highlands and Islands Society of London (HISL), Cecil Sharpe House, NW1 (Underground: Camden Town)
Gaelic songs from Kathleen Graham (Isle of Skye), and music from Frank Reid and his Scottish dance band
Admission: £20 / £15 (HISL members and ‘concessions’)
Di-Dòmhnaich, 30mh Samhain 2008, 12:00 meadhon-latha gu 5:00f
Blasad ‘Gaeilge’ (no ‘Gaedhilge’ – ’s fheàrr leinn an seann litreachadh!) ann an Ionad Culturail nan Éireannach, oisinn Black’s Road is King Street, Hammersmith, W6 (Fon-talamh: Hammersmith).
Le òraidich, bùithtean-obrach is filmichean ùra ann an Gàidhlig na h-Éireann. Còmhla ri Coláiste na nGael.
Inntreas: £13 (no £40 air 4 tiocaidean), le biadh
Sunday, 30th November 2008, 12:00 noon to 5:00pm
A taster of ‘Gaeilge’ (or ‘Gaedhilge’ – we prefer the old spelling!) at the Irish Cultural Centre, corner of Black’s Road and King Street, Hammersmith, W6 (Underground: Hammersmith).
With guest speakers, workshops and new films in Irish Gaelic. In association with Coláiste na nGael.
Admission: £13 (or £40 for 4 tickets), with lunch
Di-Dòmhnaich, 7mh Dùdlachd 2008
Seirbhis eadar-eaglaiseil an Gàidhlig is ’sa Bheurla, leis an Urr. Athair Calum MacGill-Fhaolain (Eirisgeigh) is Còisir Lunnainn.
Eaglais Aonaichte Ath-Leasaichte, Tavistock Place (oisinn Regent Square), WC1
Greim-neòin bho 12:30f; seirbhis bho 2.00f
Inter-denominational service in Gaelic and English with Rev. Father Calum MacLellan (Eriskay) and the London Gaelic Choir (Còisir Lunnainn).
United Reformed Church, Tavistock Place (corner of Regent Square), WC1
Buffet lunch from 12:30pm; service from 2.00pm
Di-Sathairne, 13mh Dùdlachd 2008, bho 7:30f
Comunn Gàidhlig Lunnainn, talla Eaglais Cùirt a’ Chrùin, Covent Garden, WC2 (Fon-talamh: Covent Garden no Charing Cross)
Òrain Ghàidhlig bho Linn Phipps (a bhuannaich ‘Aigeallan-Airgid’ nam Ban aig a’ Mhòd Nàiseanta Rìoghail, 2008)
Saturday, 13th December 2008 from 7:30pm
Gaelic songs from Linn Phipps (winner of the Ladies’ ‘Silver Pendant’ at the Royal National Mòd, 2008)
Di-Dòmhnaich, 14mh Dùdlachd 2008 aig 3:30f
Seirbhis an Gàidhlig ann an Eaglais Cùirt a’ Chrùin, Covent Garden, WC2, leis an Urr. Murchadh MacLeòid (Eaglais Rathad Chrow, Glaschu) (Fon-talamh: Covent Garden no Charing Cross)
Le srùbaig ann an talla na h-eaglaise an deaghaidh làimh (an t-srùbag a’s fheàrr a th’ann an Lunnainn!).
Sunday, 14th December 2008 at 3:30pm
With a ‘stroupach’ (cup of tea) in the church hall afterwards (London’s best ‘stroupach’!).
And the ‘regulars’: don’t forget that these events run throughout the year!
A’ chòisir Ghàidhlig an Lunnainn; coinneamh gach Di-Màirt ann an talla Eaglais Cùirt a’ Chrùin, Covent Garden, WC2 aig 7.00f (Fon-talamh: Covent Garden no Charing Cross)
Coinneamh dheireannach na bliadhna: Di-Màirt, 16mh Dùdlachd 2008 (CBC)
The Gaelic choir in London; meets every Tuesday in the hall of Crown Court Church, Covent Garden, WC2 at 7.00pm (Underground: Covent Garden or Charing Cross)
Last meeting of the year: Tuesday, 16th December 2008 (AGM)
Anns a’ CityLit, Sràid Keeley, Lunnainn WC2 (Fon-talamh: Holborn)
Ìre 1: gach Di-Ciadaoin aig 6.00f
Ìre 2: gach Di-Ciadaoin aig 7:30f
In the CityLit, Keeley Street, London WC2 (Underground: Holborn)
Level 1: every Wednesday at 6:00pm
Level 2: every Wednesday at 7:30pm
I attach a dump from the hated Microsoft Project.
This is the start of a plan, i.e. the top line is task #1. Why does project insist on taking tasks which are a round number of days or zero for a milestone and then rolling them up into fractional days? For the two rolled up tasks in the image, one is a whole number of days and the other isn't. Why is this?! All the tasks are using the same standard calendar.
PRESIDENT-ELECT BARACK OBAMA: If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible; who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time; who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer.
I go to Tesco and get a milkshake for £1
I go to Boots and get a lunch for £2.99
I go to a pub and get a decent meal for £10 including drinks.
Rarely do any of the above refuse to accept credit cards.
Rarely do any of the above expect a tip, especially for shoddy service.
Rarely do any of the above distort their prices with hidden charges.
Rarely do any of the above fail to generate a VAT receipt, legally compliant and showing the VAT paid.
Yet go into a restaurant (not a pub or in a hotel), pay £20 upwards for a meal and invariably you get a scribble for a bill, no itemised VAT and often a mandatory service charge too. Together the 10% mandatory charge and the inability to claim back VAT adds almost 30% to the expected price of the food. What other business has a service charge which is optional to charge but mandatory to pay? Why does 1 person dining get charged for service anyway? Why are pubs clear with their pricing and billing but restaurants are not?
I have no objection to tipping, but a mandatory service charge just distorts the price of the food.
I call on you to ban this 30% surcharge on food and get restaurants to issue correct bills (with the VAT total separately itemised) and to stop this nonsense of mandatory service charges for 1 person dining, indeed I would welcome them being banned for tables of 4 or less. There's no need for it and it simply annoys and confuses customers and puts them off. The bill is the last thing the restaurant serves, don't let the parting taste be a bad one.
Yours in hope
Craig (a fellow Scot working in Central London)
I'd recall every single DVD player ever sold and get the manufacturers to add a "skip the shite" button which takes you straight past all the unwanted adverts, the insults and accusations that you may be a thief, and any sort of fancy, self-indulgent DVD-designer stuff. I buy the DVD to watch the movie or TV show ... not to be told I'm a thief. I'd also force movie theatres to put up a 10 second message which says, "Hey, you paid to watch this movie, so you're probably not a thief! Thanks! We appreciate your business and hope you enjoy this movie".
Sir,— I have lived in Linlithgow for over seven years and during that time have seen businesses close in the High Street and seen a reduction in diversity in the High Street, including no toy shop, more sandwich shops and properties lying vacant. Coming from the other side of the argument, I worked for Tesco and was IT manager of the grocery website at their corporate HQ in Hertfordshire last year. Yet I feel that another out of town shopping centre is the last thing the town needs – I would rather have Tesco where it is than a larger supermarket that you need to get in a car to drive to.
The £10 minimum charge levied by retailers on credit cards doesn't apply at Tesco and if the small retailers don't want to alienate people they need to drop this requirement – even small retailers can use credit card clearing facilities that charge a flat amount per month (just like Tesco) rather than a per transaction fee.
My job as an e-commerce consultant takes me all over the UK. When I work in London, I see that small traders get more passing custom yet seem much more willing to capitalise on the internet to supplement their passing trade.
With online shopping continuing to rise, the efforts of the Linlithgow High Street to reach out to anyone wanting to shop on line are woeful by comparison. Even something as basic as a one page website listing the company name, address, email address, products and services and opening hours is missing from most of the High Street traders and instead people searching often find traders in Livingston or Falkirk instead – for example enter Linlithgow Plumber in Google and the first site returned says there are none.
Enter West Lothian computers and Google maps returns nothing for Linlithgow either. Most of the time entering generic search terms, for example Linlithgow pubs or Linlithgow restaurants such as tourists would use, simply results in generic listing type sites over which local businesses usually have little or no control – actually returning the site belonging to a local business or Linlithgow.com would be far more useful.
Whilst Linlithgow.com is a useful first step, in times of a credit crunch and competing with out of town shopping, the woeful presence of Linlithgow on the Internet does not help businesses reach out to new customers who would rather look online.
Indeed even those with the most developed websites, that is estate agents, now face challenges from online-only estate agents who list property for sale on the same websites and at a tiny fraction of the price charged by Linlithgow High Street agents. Even the might of Tesco.com can't tell me what's in stock at my local shop in Linlithgow.
The challenge of out of town shopping, online searching for businesses and online shopping presents a problem for businesses from local high street shops to major retail groups, and the people of Linlithgow. In difficult economic times we need to come together and do everything possible to reach as many customers as possible.
Not having an adequate Internet presence in this day and age is like not having a phone number 30 years ago.
Making Linlithgow at the heart of Silicon Glen fully connected with modern shopping trends would not only complement Cittaslow status, but would help businesses of all kinds to combat the challenges posed not only by Springfield's development but also global shopping trends.—Yours etc.,
CRAIG COCKBURN, M.Sc.,
Chartered IT Professional
'Craig ate here' on 13th October.
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Letter in The Herald 5-Feb-96
This was published in full as their main letter of the day
Poverty trap bound by red tape
The disproportionate publicity given to a Labour MP's decision to send her child to a grant maintained school is causing the real issues affecting millions of people to be quietly brushed aside by the Conservatives. Here is an example of a "customers" experience of the disastrous state the Welfare system is in after nearly 17 years of Tory rule. They only have themselves to blame. As a "Customer" my response is that the Welfare state is a mass of red tape and I'd like to shop elsewhere, if I could.
Last year I was made unemployed and I registered as such with the unemployment office. It turns out, that despite a 500 a month mortgage, approx. 100 a month in bills and a requirement to buy food to live, I am not eligible for any state aid. I am disqualified from receiving any unemployment because during the year 93/94 I was on the Government's Employment Training initiative and only being credited with National Insurance, not paying it. My other 7 full years of actual contributions count for nothing. I couldn't even get the Welfare State to pay my £70 train fare for an interview because the initial contract was for less than 12 months.
I am disqualified from Social Security as I live with my fiancée and she works 25 hours a week. It apparently doesn't matter that her monthly wage is the same as my mortgage. It costs about 600 a month minimum plus food for us to exist and every month we are going more overdrawn because of the lack of the welfare state. The government defines "full time employment" as 16 hours or week or over and if one of a couple is working this, the other is not eligible for social security or housing benefit no matter what their income is. This definition of "full time employment" is patently ridiculous. If I put on my job applications that I would work 16 hours full time, I'd get laughed at. If I put I'd only work 16 hours a week on my signing on card, I would not get full unemployment benefit. The Government clearly has it both ways.
The "Employment Service" fully accept this problem and numerous people at the Employment service have said "I shouldn't say this but you would be a lot better off if your fiancée gave up her job or moved out". Is it really the Conservative party which believes in "family values" which has created this appalling system - forcing people out of work or splitting up families so that they can afford to eat?
Taking the Conservative philosophy of choice to its conclusion - I believe my paying National Insurance is like obtaining an insurance policy for myself and for the benefit of others. My experience of this system is that the rules are obscure and complex. It eliminates people who need money whilst giving money to those who may be out of work but well off. I would like to opt out of this mess, as I can with a pension scheme, and pay towards a scheme which has clear, easy to understand rules which pays out when I need it. Looking at private redundancy schemes, this is what they offer.
What this country really needs though is a simple system for the unemployed and low paid of adding your income, subtracting reasonable outgoings and then paying all or some of the difference, at a level which gives a guaranteed minimum income but is an incentive to go back to work. No exclusion clauses based on one person's 16 hours work expected to fund a couple. No exclusion clauses based on what happened in the tax year years ago and no automatic benefit for the wealthy whilst genuinely poor people are trying to make ends meet.
The issues surrounding one child's schooling pale into insignificance next to the millions caught in a poverty trap by Conservative Red Tape.
There are no regulations covering the practice of mandatory service charges or tips; it is a matter for the individual establishment to decide if they make non-optional charges, at what level the charges are set, and if they include different rules in certain circumstances ie parties over a certain number. Of course, consumers can exercise choice by refusing to dine in the establishment where they consider the charges to be unduly prohibitive. However, where obligatory charges are enforced, they must be set out clearly for the consumer whenever there is an invitation to purchase, ie on a menu card. The Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations (CPRs) 2008, which came into force on 26 May, require traders not to omit material information which the average consumer needs, according to the context, to make an informed choice but is not prescriptive as to how this information must be given (eg in writing). A case could be made that the average consumer is likely to want to know what mandatory charges are included
The Prices Practices Guide which recommends to traders a set of good practices in giving the consumer information about prices in various situations, and takes account of the provisions of the CPRs, advises that where customers are required to pay a non-optional extra charge, such as a service charge, then it should be incorporated within the fully inclusive price wherever possible, also the non-optional charge should be displayed clearly on any price list or priced menu whether displayed inside or outside the establishment. Where, however, an optional sum is suggested for service, it should not automatically be included in the total bill presented to the customer.
Where a service charge or a tip is paid via a bill, it is a matter for the employer to negotiate with the employee how they are shared out. There is no law which sets this out. However, monies paid to a restaurant (eg by credit card) belong to the restaurant in the first instance, and tax is due on tips however they are paid to the waiter. National Insurance Contributions will be due if the tips are paid to workers by the employer.