marcus

Auchterarder Teenager To Represent Scotland

Auchterarder Community School pupil, Marcus Nicol, Aged 13, is producing some great scores around the Clay Pigeon Shooting circuit. Marcus started shooting on his 12th birthday, so has only been shooting for just under 2 years. His interest was encouraged by his dad, Ken Nicol, who is a qualified APSI Instructor. Marcus first took up the sport at County Clays, Dunkeld, and Clark Taylor, Proprietor, continues to be of great support.

His dad, Ken Nicol said, “It was clear from his first few attempts at clay pigeon shooting that Marcus had a keen eye and a natural ability to understand shooting concepts and disciplines”.

However, in the past few months, he has turned to shooting National Skeet. In a short period of time his scores have continually risen. A few weekends ago saw him shoot his best ever score at Kippen Gun Club – where he is a member – with the result he has been moved from Competitive C Class to B Class in a period of 8 weeks. He shot 95/100 in 2 rounds of 50 – a 21 & 24 and then 2 straight 25s. Marcus has been inspired by and has appreciated the great encouragement he has been given my Max Jeffries of Kippen Gun Club, who represents Britain in the Double Trap discipline.

Ken said. “There were claps and cheers as he came off the shooting ground as he outshot most of the adults there, the top score being a 98!

He then went on to win the Junior Cup and was in the team who picked up the 40 Bird Flush Cup at the Strathendrick RFC Charity Shoot. He then followed this by winning the BASC Junior Sporting Shoot at County Clays, Dunkeld, and came 4th equal in the Sporting Challenge at the BASC Scottish Game Fair the first weekend in July. Even on holiday this past couple of weeks has seen him come second in the only national Sporting Championship in Bulgaria!

His desire to improve and succeed is evident in his attitude. Even when he does not perform as well as he wishes, he stays calm and does not show any frustration or temper. He is a slightly built teenager but his consistent and continual progress over the year has been inspirational.

His hard work and dedication has paid off and Marcus got news a couple of weeks ago whilst on holiday that he had been selected to shoot for Scotland in the Home International on the 21st/22nd August at the Mid Wales Shooting Centre in Trefeglwys,

Marcus said. “This is a great honour and fantastic achievement in such a short space of time shooting in this discipline. It involves two days practice and then 2 day’s competition which is very intense, and will be my first experience of national competition. I am really looking forward to it.”

When asked about the future, Marcus said “My desire is to continually improve in order to reach the top competitively; I would like to make shooting my career and continue to be a great ambassador for the sport and to encourage young shooters like myself. I know I have some way to go but I have found a sport that I love and will continue to dedicate the time required to achieve my goal”.

This weekend saw him pick up the Juniors Cup at the Scottish Captain’s Shoot held at the Scottish Clay Pigeon Shooting Centre at Leuchars, shooting an impressive 93.

Marcus’s dad, Ken Nicol said, “We are hugely grateful for the sponsorship we have received from Trevor Brister of Trev’s House of Tattoos in Perth and also to Alan Harris of Alpa Joiners in Denny, as shooting is such an expensive sport. We are also in the process of approaching cartridge companies for further sponsorship as to compete at this level Marcus requires a lot of practice, firing around 1500 cartridges a month. If anyone reading this article can assist Marcus, he would be delighted to be contacted via the publication.

broadband

Beware False Broadband Promises

Living in such a rural location, I have not expected much from my broadband connection.  Really I have been quite happy that we have had broadband.

So when the Ryder Cup was announced and there was all the publicity of how the local area communications network would be upgraded I was looking forward to an improvement in what was available.

There was no doubt that Auchterarder would be the first to benefit and that myself being based in Aberuthven may not see the benefit for some time.  So you can imagine my excitement when we started getting leaflets through the door inviting us to sign up for BT Infinity.

Not being with BT I went onto the website of my broadband and phone supplier and checked what was available.  Sure enough, fibre broadband was available, what excitement, no more yelling at each other to close down windows on the computers.

I waited a few weeks to make sure that we had a day off for the engineer to come and upgrade the telephone wiring in the house.  Once this was sorted, off I went to order my new fibre broadband package.

Funny, it didn’t seem to be available by my supplier anymore.  No matter, we could still get BT Infinity, it said so in the leaflet, addressed to me, not just the householder.  I called BT and asked about upgrading to fibre.  “Oh, that’s not available”.

It seems that the “area” has fibre, however as we are cabinet 3 it may still be some time before it is upgraded.  The operator advised me to call in the middle of this week to check.

I decided to check online and was delighted to find that I could get fibre once they had checked my line.  Having checked prices, BT were very close to my providers price so I decided just to order from them right away.

I filled in all the forms, had the lines checked again etc and was just about to hit order when out of the corner of my eye, I saw the expected line speed.  1-3Mbs.  This was my speed at the moment, this was not a fibre broadband speed.

So it seems that BT were going to allow me to change providers and charge me for fibre broadband and I would gain nothing from this move.  It could be that I would have received a call or email saying they were unable to improve my speed at present, however I wouldn’t like to take bets on that.

So beware false broadband promises, as Plusnet my own provider had also taken my order and only because I wanted to check with BT that it was really available did I cancel that order before giving final card details.

How many I wonder have ordered an upgrade but are still stuck with a slow speed as the cabinet hasn’t been upgraded yet?  It may be worth checking your deal if you still have a slow internet speed, certainly it was the difference between £2.50 per month for standard broadband and between £13 and £15 per month for fibre.

toby carvery

Toby Carvery Revisited

Recently I rediscovered the Toby Carvery at the Isle of Skye in Perth.

It has been a few years since I was last there and to tell the truth I had completely forgotten about it. Then a couple of months ago when Patrick was visiting we were looking for somewhere to go for a Sunday Dinner. Looking on the web for places in Perth I found the Toby Carvery, which was very reasonably priced and had all the required ingredients for Sunday Dinner.

That first visit was a welcome relaxed affair in quiet surroundings. Obviously we chose the right time as on future visits we have had to wait for a table. Never a long wait and no matter how busy it is, still a comfortable and relaxing place to eat.

Tonight was one of the busiest I have seen, which did surprise me for a Wednesday. However it was a treat for myself and Kathleen so we didn’t mind the wait as it gave us time to chat and catch up.

The waiting staff were at full stretch to try and clear tables as quickly as possible so that waiting diners could be seated with as little delay as possible. To Michelle, Kelsey, Natalia and Aneta I can only say, well done, fabulous job. These girls worked so hard tonight and helped each other out when they could to ensure all the diners got seated and fed without too much of a delay. Still smiling and still happy to help even when they were struggling, a credit to the restaurant.

There were people who expected to be seated immediately or complained when a table wasn’t ready within a short time, I was appalled at their treatment of staff who were obviously doing their best and more. Sometimes it is just embarassing to be witness to the way some people treat waiting staff.   Surely a little understanding in an obviously busy situation isn’t too much to ask for?

For myself and Kathleen it was a good night with good food, good service and good prices. It wasn’t our first visit and it most certainly won’t be our last.

ceiling leak

“Drip” “Drip”

“The first indication I had that all was not well with my house was an irritating “drip” “drip” coming from the kitchen.

Eventually unable to stand it anymore I got up and wandered through ready to shout at my daughter for leaving the tap running.  That however would have been the easy option.

It wasn’t a dripping tap that was causing the irritating noise, no, it was a drip from the light in the ceiling.  Water from somewhere had made its way through the house and was now dripping down from my electric light fitting.

I don’t know too much about such things but I do know for sure that water and electricity don’t mix.  So the first thing I did was switch off the light and then go investigate.

What a nightmare, the taping in my kitchen ceiling was coming adrift, there was a huge area of damp plaster on the ceiling and who knew what was happening to my electrics.

Now a lot of the time when I have DIY problems I will call in family and friends.  However this time I knew that it was well beyond that, this was a call to the insurance company.”

 

This is a typical story of insurance claims for households.  Something happens that is just a bit more than friends and family can deal with.  Safety is a factor because of the mix of water and electrics and so it needs to be handled by the professionals.

This is the point in the story that can make all the difference to you and your insurance claim.  This is the point when you get your own expert to make sure that your best interests are looked after.

Don’t accept that offer of cutting out part of the ceiling and changing the light socket.  You need tests done to make sure things are safe, you need to make sure that your property is put back to a “pre loss condition”.  You need your own Loss Adjuster.

When you find that “drip” “drip” is not a tap but coming from the ceiling, make one of your calls to your own Loss Adjuster.

Public Loss Adjusters Scotland are the only company in Scotland working solely for policy holders.  We are NOT affiliated with any insurance company so our interest is solely in getting you the best possible settlement.

So if you need to make a claim on your household insurance remember to look after your own best interests.  Call 0800 0435 999 and let us help make your claim easier.

 

An escape of water is one of many reasons to phone the insurance company.  If you have any questions about something else that has happened then please don’t hesitate to email Public Loss Adjusters at – kmcrostie@publicla.co.uk

Alyth bridge

Community Spirit Shines Through In Alyth

alyth flood

 

 

 

From This

 

 

Alyth recovers

 

 

 

 

To This

 

In less than a week.

It seems so long ago that I posted those photographs from Alyth, unfortunately it was only a couple of weeks ago.  So much devastation in such a short time, it seemed like Alyth was going to be out of commission for some time.

That was until the Community got together.  The Town Hall was opened, donations of food and clothing came in at speed.  As soon as the water receded, members of the local community started fixing things.  Tractors, diggers, trucks, people all appeared and all made a start on the clean up.

A crèche was set up in the town which allowed parents of young children to concentrate on getting their homes back to some semblance of normality.  In some cases this was not possible so alternative accommodation had to be found.  The crèche gave parents a few hours where they could make appointments and organise contractors whilst the children were safe and looked after.

Those of more advanced years whose homes had been affected found they had willing volunteers to help clean out their properties. Within days many properties had damp carpets and furniture removed to allow residents a chance to sort things out safely.

The electricity company sent a food van to the Town Hall so people could get hot drinks and hot food whilst their electricity was off.

In this age where the majority of media stories we hear are negative, the community spirit in Alyth is shining like a beacon of hope.  This is what living in a community is all about, working together to overcome, helping each other get through the worst.

Alyth I take my hat off to you.

 

 

titp

T In The Park – What Next?

The first T In The Park at Strathallan has come and gone, what next?

To get a view on how those closest to the festival were affected I visited the Muthill and Tullibardine Community Council Meeting last night. As you can imagine the main topic of conversation was the very recent T In The Park.

The traffic situation was at the top of everyone’s list of problems, especially as the traffic affected the properties of more than one or two of the participants in the meeting. All in attendance agreed that the traffic was the biggest problem and that this would certainly need to be looked at for future events. Questions were asked about the Traffic Managment Programme, the Police effectiveness, PKC due diligence for the festival amongst others.

PKC Councillor Tom Gray advised that there was an ongoing enquiry into the festival and the problems it faced. There would need to be a radical change in the transport arrangements for future events to ensure PKC continuing support.

As discussions continued there was mention of health and safety issues and the percieved lack of control of some festival goers by stewards. coaches allowing drinking during travel and public safety in general.

Cllr Gray assured local residents that PKC would be working closely with DF Concerts to ensure changes were made to the areas which caused problems this year.

When asked about the points raised, Geoff Ellis said “We genuinely apologise for the issues with traffic and the knock on effect that this had for the local community. We’ve resolved to fix those for next year and beyond. We completely understand some people’s frustrations, but we do listen and we will make sure we put the correct measures in place to ensure that they are all resolved ahead of the 2016 event.”

“This was our first year at Strathallan and there are definite lessons to be learned. We did keep an open dialogue with locals throughout the weekend and we made changes to resolve anything that was reported to our local resident liaison officer – who is also now following up with people to bring us feedback. We’d had 18 years at Balado and Kinross residents will tell you that some of the early years were just as challenging as this year. But they will also tell you that we were true to our word, that we listened and we fixed the problems. We will do the same at Strathallan.”

“We have also had feedback from many locals that they had a brilliant time at the festival and they also felt the positive benefits to their business and the town – we want to ensure that in the future, this is an experience shared by everyone.”

From the meeting I attended, there are definitely issues to be addressed, however if this is done and local knowledge obtained to aid in these issues then things could definitely change for the better.

Now that the first 48hrs after the end of the festival have passed, more and more comments are being seen praising the event and looking forward to next year.

I don’t think anyone would try to say it was a perfect event, however the majority of festival goers appear to have had a great time.

This was the first year in a new venue, next year with more detailed knowledge the intentions are for things to progress. T In The Park is one of the best known music festivals in the world, to have it in our local area is a positive for the local economy. With local residents, DF Concerts, PKC and Police Scotland working together, the event can hopefully improve and benefit all concerned.

titp

T in the Park – Lessons To Be Learned

Being based in the area which includes Strathallan Castle, we were hoping for T In The Park 2015 to be a great event. So many locals had supported it’s arrival and were looking forward to welcoming festival goers to a great event.

Sadly it seems there were a few problems from which there are lessons to be learned.

Transport was an issue, a very problematic issue which left many people with a bad impression of the event. The inital plan was something that looked as if it would work quite well. However when there were unexpected factors added, there seemed to be a lack of backup plans. This resulted in people waiting for hours for transport, walking along the roads which completely negated the traffic plan which had been designed for no pedestrians. Stewards seemed to be ill informed with no competent people to take charge and sort out the chaos, which left some in precarious situations throughout the night.

As those who attended Balado through the years can verify, there have been problems before, eg. 10 mile tailbacks on the motorways in 2007. As the first year in a new venue there were bound to be teething problems but simple things do not seem to have been taken into consideration.

A car park in a grass field in Scotland. It rains, car park turns to mud park, this was always a probability never mind a possibility. One exit from a car park with hundreds of cars, never a good idea.

Maybe next year instead of booking buses from the event, utilise a parking area for buses away from the event and just run shuttles from event to parking area. Then it won’t matter what bus people get on from the event, at least they will be moving, not wandering about looking for the correct bus.

As for the apparent lack of information from Stewards and lack of police presence seen when it seemed to be needed most. Maybe it is time to stop using young volunteers as stewards and get in the professionals, well organised, well informed, able to stand their ground and initiate back up plans. Who could expect a young volunteer to take on a group of drunken idiots?

So – Lessons to be learned would seem to be revisit the traffic plans and utilise professional stewards.

Moving forward, there have been thousands of festival goers who have had a fantastic time at T In The Park at Strathallan Castle. It is still one of the best music festivals in the world and we are proud to have it in our back yard. We look forward to having you all back next year when I am sure lessons will have been learned and it will be an enjoyable experience for all.

titp

TITP Travel Delays Possible Explanation

There were many comments about the problems people had leaving the venue last night.

The information I have so far is that there was a problem on the road heading for the West pick up/drop off point.  This problem was not it seems anything too serious but had to be checked out by professionals and thus the road had to be closed for safety purposes.

This necessitated the diversion of traffic heading for the West to the East pick up/drop off point.

This obviously was not what the organisers were hoping for and caused a great deal of delay and uncertainty for those trying to leave the venue.

An isolated incident which was unexpected and happened late at night which meant there was a lot of traffic had to be rerouted.  Although irritating and uncomfortable for those waiting to get picked up, I am sure you can agree not something that was expected in the planning of the event.

If I manage to obtain any further information I will of course post it here.

titp

Welcome to T In The Park Saturday

Welcome to T In The Park Saturday. It’s a beautiful morning here in Auchterarder and we a looking forward to welcoming everyone to Strathallan Castle today.

If you are using a day ticket and intend leaving tonight, please keep an eye out for any travel arrangement announcements. It seems there were some problems last night with people’s homeward travel and we are assuming that the organisers will be putting out statements or updated arrangements later today.

If you are just wakening up, why not jump on a shuttle bus once you are up and about and come visit Auchterarder. Stock up with those little extras you forgot and visit one of the cafes for a proper breakfast?

We would love to see you and you know you want some proper cooked food lol.

Updates to come later – Have a great day everyone.

titp

T in The Park Friday 2015

Good morning and welcome to T in The Park Friday, brought to you by Lang Toon Times and Public Loss Adjusters Scotland. Today is starting cool and damp in Auchterarder, hopefully this will ease us into a lovely Summers day as forecast by local weather guru Windy Wilson, who will be in attendance at T in the Park this year so say hi if you see him and Wee Windy.

If you are just wakening, The Tearoom in the centre of Auchterarder is now open serving fabulous SpecialT breakfasts. Why not take a shuttlebus to Auchterarder or if you are on your way, stop by and set yourself up for the day. Cafe Kisa will also be open from 9am.

In the centre of town, LLoyds Pharmacy has high factor sun protection on offer, better to be prepared for the sun than suffering later.

Sugar and Spice are also cooking up a storm with plenty pies, sausage rolls and bridies for those looking to stock up for later. They also do a selection of takeaway sandwiches and salad boxes for the more health conscious.

More updates to come as the day goes on.

The LTT Coverage of TITP is proudly sponsored by Public Loss Adjusters Scotland.

Offering a complete professional service for managing building insurance claims for

water, flood, fire and storm damage.