Orcadian Column, 6 July 2021


Orcadian Column, 22 June 2021

Being applauded from the pitch during a match against Westray is dreamland territory for any Sanday footballer. As I found on Sunday, however, when you’re strapped to a stretcher and the clapping is more in sympathy, those dreams rather turn to ashes.

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Orcadian Column, 8 June 2021

These days, the mere thought of having to sit exams again is enough to bring me out in cold sweats. By and large I did fine at school and university, but the run up to exam time was always enormously stressful and the aftermath a blessed relief.

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13.05.2021

For roughly five minutes last Friday, thanks to the efficiency of the count operation in Orkney, I commanded a ‘supermajority’ in the Scottish Parliament. A string of SNP wins elsewhere soon turned the tables, but for much of the afternoon I was THE official opposition.

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18.03.21

This is my final column before the current parliamentary session ends and campaigning starts in earnest ahead of the election on 6th May. My intention had been to share some reflections on the last five years as Orkney’s MSP before making the case for why the next session of parliament must put the recovery first as we rebuild from the pandemic and deal with the climate emergency.

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04.03.21

Alex Salmond stopped short of calling for Nicola Sturgeon’s resignation during his appearance before a Holyrood Committee last week, but the implication was clear. “Scotland’s leadership has failed” he declared, while also taking aim at those in charge of Scotland’s civil and prosecution services, as well as the SNP.

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18.02.21

The malicious prosecutions of David Whitehouse and Paul Clark, senior administrators at Duff & Phelps, should have red flags popping up to the sound of the loudest possible alarm bells.

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04.02.21

Budget statements are traditionally moments of high political drama, where the parliamentary chamber is usually packed and government opponents and supporters indulge in a pantomime of heckling and applause.

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21.01.21

Spoiler alert: neither Robbie Fraser nor I have made it into Orkney’s Sporting Hall of Fame.

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07.01.21

So you wait eleven years for a recall of the Scottish Parliament and then two come along in a week.

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