Monthly Archives: January 2015



The Scottish National Party has demanded answers on civil service impartiality from the UK’s top mandarin, following an extraordinary admission from the most senior civil servant at the Treasury about his and his department’s stance on the Scottish independence referendum.

Speaking at the inaugural meeting of the Strand Group last night in a lecture at the Treasury entitled “The Treasury and the Union” Sir Nicholas Macpherson said that in such an “extreme” case as last year’s referendum, the normal rules of civil service impartiality “do not apply”.

The civil service Code of Conduct clearly states that a civil servant must be impartial, and not “act in a way that unjustifiably favours or discriminates against particular individuals or interests”, “act in a way that is determined by party political considerations” or allow “personal political views”.

Commenting, SNP Treasury spokesperson Stewart Hosie MP said:

“These comments are astounding.

“This is a very serious admission and it begs the question – when will this UK government next abandon impartiality? We expect the highest standards from senior civil servants. With this admission, it is clear they have fallen short.

“I have written to Sir Jeremy Heywood demanding answers on under what circumstances it is acceptable for the rules of impartiality to be suspended?

“The civil service code states that as a civil servant, you ‘are expected to carry out your role with dedication and a commitment to the Civil Service and its core values: integrity, honesty, objectivity and impartiality,’ which is ‘acting solely according to the merits of the case and serving equally well governments of different political persuasions’.

“At a time when the UK and Scottish Governments should be able to work in good faith on more powers, this raises serious questions about Scotland’s ability to have any confidence in the role of the Treasury”



Commenting on reports that the Scottish National Party leader Nicola Sturgeon – along with Green Party and Plaid Cymru leaders – will be included in televised election leaders debates, SNP Westminster Leader Angus Robertson MP said:

“If it is true that SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon will be included in UK-wide debates under the broadcasters’ new proposals, it represents very welcome progress.

“With a larger membership than the Lib Dems and UKIP combined, and more elected MPs than UKIP, the case for including the SNP in the televised debates is unanswerable.

“A recent YouGov poll shows that most people across the UK support Nicola Sturgeon being included in the televised leaders debates. We want these debates to happen, and they need to include the SNP so that the diversity of politics and our democracy across the UK is reflected. With polls indicating strong SNP support, and the possibility of holding the balance of power at Westminster, it is only fair that people north and south of the border have the opportunity to hear what the SNP have to say about reversing austerity, cancelling Trident, and achieving new powers for Scotland

“The inclusion of the SNP, Plaid and the Greens with Nicola Sturgeon, Leanne Wood and Natalie Bennett will also rightly show that politics beyond Westminster isn’t just an old boys club.”




The SNP has today welcomed a new poll by Ipsos MORI for STV which shows that the SNP has a 28-point lead over Labour in Westminster voting intentions. 

Commenting, Depute Leader of the SNP, Stewart Hosie MP, said: 

“This is another very encouraging poll – with a 28-point SNP lead for May’s Westminster election, this shows remarkable levels of support for the only party that will always put the interests of the people of Scotland front and centre.

“But we are taking absolutely nothing for granted and will work hard for every vote in May. With Labour MPs this week voting with the Tories to spend £100 billion on a new generation of Trident nuclear weapons, and last week voting with the Tories for £30 billion more austerity cuts, people across Scotland can put their trust in the SNP to stand up for their interests, and use our clout in a hung Westminster parliament to end austerity and oppose Trident renewal.

“And it’s clear that there is widespread support for the greatest possible devolution of powers to Holyrood. But the Westminster government simply isn’t willing to give Scotland the powers we need to build a more equal society and more competitive economy – and that is why we need a strong team of SNP MPs elected next May to hold them to account, and ensure that they finally deliver on their Vow to Scotland.

“What is becoming increasingly clear is that people in Scotland do not have to vote Labour to get rid of the Tories – the SNP will never put the Tories into government.

“Left to their own devices, Labour would continue with austerity. With a strong team of SNP MPs holding the balance of power at Westminster, we can ensure that Scotland’s voice is heard and use our influence positively to end austerity economics, free Scotland of Trident nuclear weapons, and secure the powers we need to build a fairer, more prosperous country.”



SNP                      52%

Lab                       24%

Cons                    12%

LDs                      4%

Greens                 4%

Others                  3%


Sample size          1,001

Dates                    12 – 19 Jan


Seat projection via the Electoral Calculus website:

SNP                       55

Lab                         4

LDs                        0

Con                        0

Sam Burton Scottish Gas Yorkshire

Sam Burton Scottish Gas Yorkshire.

Today one of this sites admin team says a big thank you to Scottish Gas Customer relations team, Yorkshires very own Sam Burton.

After years of Scottish Gas customer relations being the best place for comedians to get their scripts from it was refreshing today to be met on the phone by Sam Burton from Yorkshire.

Scottish Gas only has to use this lovely persons attitude to customer care and satisfaction, she was warm, really helpful, very understanding and very polite.

Scottish Gas should be very thankful that they have customer service personal like Sam Burton she is a credit to South Yorkshire, Scottish Gas and and a fantastic asset to that company to keep.

At last Scottish Gas getting something right now lets see if they can reduce that crap 5% utility bill reduction amounts.



SNP Energy Minister Fergus Ewing said that the Labour party must clearly back proposals for a reduction in tax on the oil and gas industry to ensure a vibrant future for the North Sea.
The proposals to reduce the supplementary charge immediately and to introduce an exploration tax credit have been put forward by the Scottish Government and supported by the industry, including Sir Ian Wood.
Speaking ahead of a debate in Westminster on the Oil industry Mr Ewing said:
“Every day without action from the UK Government risks further damage to the oil and gas industry.  Businesses and oil workers in the North Sea do not need to wait for another review they need action now.
“Labour must give their full support to the immediate reduction in the supplementary charge and support an exploration tax credit that would secure a strong future for the North Sea.
“The Scottish Government has set out clear proposals that would support the industry and industry experts like Sir Ian Wood have endorsed our approach.
“So far Labour have only shown interest in talking the industry down and playing party political games.  The Oil and gas industry has had enough of warm words – what is needed is action and action now.
“Instead of sitting back and doing nothing Labour must endorse the immediate action that the industry and the Scottish Government have been calling for.”


Reports that foodbank use in Scotland reached record levels in December have been described as showing an appalling lack of concern at Westminster for the impact of its actions.
The BBC has reported a record foodbank use that 10,489 people visited one of the Trussell Trust’s 48 foodbanks in Scotland in December, a 13 per cent increase on the 9,263 people the previous year and the highest figure yet recorded by the charity.
One third of those who visited the foodbanks were children.
Despite the alarming rise in foodbank use in Scotland following the introduction of Westminster’s welfare cuts, UK ministers continue to refuse to appear in front of the Scottish Parliament’s Welfare Reform Committee to discuss the effect of their decisions.
Commenting, SNP MSP Kevin Stewart said:
“The fact that record numbers of people in Scotland had to rely on foodbanks last month is heartbreaking. Behind each of these visits is an individual or family that has been driven to the brink by Westminster’s actions.
“It is abundantly clear that the welfare cuts that the Westminster Government has inflicted on people across Scotland have directly contributed to the dramatic rise in the number of people forced to rely on foodbanks to survive.
“The fact that the Westminster Government has allowed the number of people using foodbanks to grow and grow without taking action to reverse their cuts shows an appalling lack of concern.
“When UK ministers refuse time and time again to appear in front of the Scottish Parliament to justify their actions, it is difficult to escape the conclusion that they simply do not care about the damage they are doing.
“It underlines why Westminster cannot be trusted to make welfare decisions for Scotland.
“We need to gain responsibility for our own welfare choices in Scotland – something that we will only be able to secure by electing a strong team of SNP MPs in May’s election.”
Notes: The BBC’s report on the increase in the use of Trussell Trust foodbanks can be viewed at


SNP comment on TV dabates on the news Labour, Lib Dem and UKIP leaders have jointly written to broadcasters to press ahead with general election TV debates even if David Cameron refuses to take part – but excluding the SNP, Plaid Cymru and the Greens – SNP Deputy Leader Stewart Hosie MP said:
UKIP is now part of the Westminster establishment along with Labour and the Lib Dems, and this proves it.
It’s quite astounding that Labour are prepared to work with UKIP on a debate format which excludes the SNP, Plaid Cymru and Greens.
Yesterday Labour voted with the Tories on austerity, today they are working with UKIP on debates.
A recent YouGov poll shows that most people across the UK support Nicola Sturgeon being included on the televised leaders debates – we want these debates to happen, and they must include the SNP.
The polls show that south of the border, and across the nations and regions of the UK, people rightly recognise the need to have fair representation in the televised debates.
“With a larger membership than the Lib Dems and UKIP combined, and more elected MPs than UKIP, the case for including the SNP is unanswerable.
“The addition of the SNP, Plaid and the Greens with Nicola Sturgeon, Leanne Wood and Natalie Bennett will also rightly show that politics across the UK isn’t just an old boys club.”


The SNP is today welcoming a new poll which shows that the party’s commitment to protecting and improving the NHS is rated higher than any other party in the UK.
The poll – commissioned by Michael Ashcroft – asked respondents to rate on a scale of one to ten how important they consider protecting and improving the NHS to be to each political party.  The SNP achieved a rating of 7.04 – the highest in the UK – compared to Labour who are on 6.69 and the Tories who are on just 5.30.
In government, the SNP has delivered real results for the NHS – introducing the legal Treatment Time Guarantee which has saw 98 per cent of patients – over 600,000 people – treated within twelve weeks, and recently announcing an additional £65m in funding for health boards across Scotland in the next financial year.
Commenting, SNP MSP Bob Doris said:
“Our NHS is our most valued public resource – and this poll is a welcome confirmation that the people of Scotland recognise the strong action taken by the SNP in government to protect our health service from the impact of Westminster’s cuts and privatisation agenda south of the border.
“The SNP’s record on the NHS is second to none – delivering real results on waiting times and staff numbers, introducing free prescriptions for all and protecting the NHS budget in the face of cuts passed down the line from Westminster.
“And it is no wonder that the SNP is more trusted to protect and improve our NHS than Labour – who just last night voted along with the Tories to initiate another round of spending cuts and to put further pressure on our public services.
“At the General Election in May it is vital that we send a strong team of SNP MPs to Westminster to serve Scotland and work to protect Scotland’s budget – and deliver more powers that will enable the Scottish Parliament to further protect and improve our NHS for the future.”


Scottish Home Report Scam

Scottish Home Report Scam

The one thing the Scottish Government has got wrong and must get rid of the Scottish Home Report Scam which is turning into daylight robbery.

When it started it was meant to be a house buyers dream come true.

The Scottish Home Report is now nothing more then a right little scam.

Home reports were meant to be used by the buyers mortgage companies to give out loans but now they have moved the goal posts and order their own reports or ask the buyers to pay for the Home Report Surveys to be carried out again sometimes using the very same surveyors that was last in the property perhaps only a few days before.

What purpose does this home report serve other than to rip off both parties.

England tried a similar scheme and it lasted less than 6 months because it was unworkable down there.

One of the reasons cited by lenders is that the contract is between the seller and their selling agents and if problems should arrise later and the said survey was in any way suspect legally they would be taking to the cleaners so to speak, which is fair enough.

What is the point of both parties having to pay fees for the same survey other than making surveyors very rich and another reason to get rid of this Scottish Home Report Scam.

It may well give buyers peace of mind but dont forget some buying surveyors may pick up problems other selling surveyors failed to spot so where is the benefits of both parties paying the fees.

In the old days only buyers paid the fees, this also means if sellers are in debts they have to find at least £500 and some legal outlays up front making it even harder for Scottish house sellers to get their properties on to the housing market.

In Aberdeen one of the top house buying areas only a handfull of estate agents will charge no fees upfront and its a similar story across Scotland.

Have you been affected by this latest Scottish Home Report Scam, if so please post your story here and click the leave comments above?































It has been revealed 28 Scottish Labour MPs voted with the UK government tonight for £75billion of cuts and tax rises.


Commenting, SNP Treasury spokesperson Stewart Hosie MP said:


“Labour have shown their true colours in siding with the Tories, and it shows now even more clearly that only by voting SNP can Westminster’s obsession with imposing austerity cuts – that just don’t work – be changed


“George Osborne is committed to continued austerity which will hit Scottish public services- and tonight he has been backed by Scottish Labour.


“The Scottish Labour MPs who voted tonight with the Tories represent some of the areas which have been hardest hit by government austerity measures, and it will be ordinary, hard-working people in their constituencies who will continue to suffer.


The SNP in government has a strong record on protecting our public services and supporting public sector workers – including the recent funding announced for NHS boards across the country.

But the impact of Westminster’s austerity agenda is continuing to be felt – and with more cuts being passed down the line , the strain on our vital public services can only increase.



List of Scottish Labour MPs voting with the UK government on further cuts:


Douglas Alexander      Paisley and Renfrewshire North

Willie Bain                  Glasgow North East

Gordon Banks             Ochil and South Perthshire

Anne Begg                  Aberdeen South

Russell Brown             Dumfries and Galloway

Michael Connarty         Linlithgow and East Falkirk

Margaret Curran           Glasgow East

Iain Davidson              Glasgow South West

Thomas Docherty        Dunfermline and West Fife

Brian Donohoe            Central Ayshire

Frank Doran                Aberdeen North

Gemma Doyle             West Dunbartonshire

Tom Greatrex              Rutherglen and Hamilton West

David Hamilton            Midlothian

Tom Harris                  Glasgow South

Jimmy Hood                Lanark and Hamilton East

Cathy Jamieson           Kilmarnock and Loudoun

Iain MacKenzie           Inverclyde

Michael McCann         East Kilbride , Stathaven and Lesmahagow

Gregg McClymont       Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch

Anne McGuire            Stirling

Graham Morrice          Livingston

Iain Murray                 Edinburgh South

Pamela Nash              Airdrie and Shotts

Fiona O’Donnell          East Lothian

John Robertson          Glasgow North West

Frank Roy                  Motherwell and Wishaw

Anas Sarwar              Glasgow Central


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