Wednesday 25 November 2020


CALEDONIA writer Dougie Maclean says he would love Rod Stewart to sing his famous anthem as he gets ready to pick up a Special Recognition award at this years Specsavers Scottish Music Awards. 
Caledonia, which Dougie wrote in 1977 as a ‘wee homesick song’ in his twenties, has been covered around the world and is seen as an unofficial anthem for Scotland, played regularly at football and rugby matches, weddings and funerals.
But despite being covered by everyone from Dolores Keane to Amy Macdonald, Dougie says he’d love Rod to do his own take on it. 
He said: “It’s a fantastic thing as a songwriter to have a song that has become a part of common culture. I always thought Rod Stewart would sing a great version of it. I don’t think he has ever done it.”
Caledonia is just one of hundreds of songs written by Dougie over a careers spanning forty six years. 
He said: “As I grow older my music becomes more personal. Music is quite magical.  My daughter was at school what her daddy did and she said ‘my daddy is a magician’. Music brings a lot of pleasure whatever story is behind it.”
Dougie’s songs including The Gael have soundtracked films like Last Of The Mohicans as well as having actors like Sean Connery quote them.
He said: “I did an advert for Visit Scotland and I got to meet Sean Connery who had to read a line from Caledonia in it. It was done in a film studio. You’re standing there and thinking ‘There’s James Bond and he’s saying the words of my song and it’s nice’.”
Yet despite his success he says he is not rolling in riches. 
He said: “I’m not minted and have not treated myself to anything other than guitars by Jimmy Moon, my pride and joy. I have three of them and they are the tools of my trade.”
For Nordoff Robbins fundraiser Scottish Music Awards on Saturday, Dougie plans to play a special song which he wrote after meeting a very sick girl in Rachel House years ago.
He said: “I was very lucky to sit in the music therapy for terminally ill kids and wrote a song called The Gift which came from watching a wee girl who got music therapy. I often thought I’d love to give the song to the mother.”

Five Caledonia Covers 
Frankie Miller (advert for Tennents Lager)

Paolo Nutini (T In The Park)

Amy Macdonald (on album This Is The Life) 

Ronan Keating (on album Winter Songs)

Sir Sean Connery, Lulu, Amy Macdonald, Sandi Thom, Eddi Reader, Brian Cox, golfer Sam Torrance, multi Olympic champion Sir Chris Hoy and Scottish international rugby players Thom Evans and Kelly Brown(Homecoming Scotland ad 2009)

Friday 30 October 2020


GLASGLOW returned to Glasgow’s Botanic Gardens and was invited to try it out. 
We  jumped at the chance because let’s face it, it’s been a long time since we could go out and have some actual fun in a Covid safe environment. 

We took our mask and our own hand sanitiser in case buy they’ve got plenty of sanitiser dotted around the Botanics in case you need some. They ask you just to wear a mask in queues or loos but we kept ours on for the bits where we thought there would be more people. There are stewards all along the attraction asking people to socially distance so it seemed very safe. 
 The attraction this year is centres around superheroes and Itison founder Oli Norman wrote a narrative that sees you start off on a journey of self discovery. It’s a positive message for wee ones - and those who might need it in this time of anxiety. There’s a hero in every one of us. 

We were taken through different zones that were reminiscent of a Superman movie, the crystals, the fire, the lasers and the other worldly props. 
There were pumpkins galore in what might be one of Scotland's largest pumpkin patches and we loved the huge Close Encounters style UFO. 
The marshmallows and fire pit proved a hit and at £3 extra it wasn’t overpriced. 
There’s a good village too if you want to enjoy some tacos and burgers. 
By the end of the night we could feel the power and we loved posing for some superhero pics. In fact,  you could say we were flying. 
Tickets are officially sold out for those year but there are some floating about online - just make sure they are authentic :) 

For peace of mind: 

* A fully outdoor event with one-way system

* Reduced capacity and staggered arrival times

* Widened paths and removal of any pinch points

* Dedicated COVID safety officer

* Socially distanced queue management throughout

* Increased facilities, cleaning and hand sanitising stations along the route

Sunday 25 October 2020


ROCKETMAN star Taron Egerton spent time in Scotland climbing mountains with his friends during lockdown. 
But when someone asked if he was visiting his movie co star Richard Madden he joked that Richard was a pretend Scot who actually came from Essex. 
The Welsh star and his two pals explored the wilds of Scotland at the end of last month over five days and Taron showed off pictures of the trio exploring the Scottish Munros. 
He appeared to be at the summit of Ben Nevis in Inverness in one of the pictures. 
Ben Nevis, in Invernessshire is the highest mountain in the U.K.  at 1345 metres above sea level.
Taron who wore a Napapijri recycled puffer jacket in some of the pictures had a pair of white trainers on his feet and told fans that he’d left his climbing boots in the van.
He wrote: “In the wilds of Scotland (for some reason left my boots in the van) in my @napapijriCircular Puffer jacket. Not only is it insanely warm, the fabric is made from recycled fishing nets and other waste materials.”
Asked if he’d visited Richard Madden during his trip he said: “No, he’s actually from Essex. He says the accent is ‘better for his brand.’
Richard spent time at a country estate in Scotland in August, where he caught up with fellow acting friends Lily James, Dominic Cooper and Gemma Chan during a rural group holiday.

It was believed that Richard stayed in the Blair Atholl area of Scotland, a village in Perthshire known for its rustic stone buildings and scenic landscape.
Earlier in the day Taron told followers on his Instagram stories that he’d been chopping up dog treats and joked that he needed to get a job.
The star was of course joking about being out of work. 
He has a busy schedule lined up for acting in coming months with the release of Tetris, Little Shop Of Horrors and Sing 2 followed by Kinsman 3 in 2022.

Wednesday 21 October 2020


WE can hear the jungle drums and the jingle bells as BBC Two comedy Two Doors Down is coming calling this Christmas.


 It was announced in the spring that the award-winning Scottish comedy will be returning to UK screens for a fifth series on BBC Two next year.

But in a surprise move, can now reveal that the BBC has now also signed up for a Christmas special of the comedy to go out this December on BBC Two and BBC Scotland. 

The Christmas special will be filmed in line with Covid-19 industry guidelines but will be taking a side-step from the current pandemic to focus on laughs.


Steven Canny, Executive Producer at BBC Studios Comedy which makes the series in Scotland said: “I’m delighted that Two Doors Down is going to give people the neighbourly get-together they have been missing out on in recent times. Eric, Beth, Colin, Cathy, Ian, Gordon and, of course, Christine get together to celebrate in the way that only they can. This special episode is the complete package of uncomfortable comments, barbed compliments and, of course, a ton of laughs.”


Further details of the Christmas special will be released at a later date but it will feature Arabella Weir as Beth and Alex Norton as Eric - the long-suffering Bairds  - and Elaine C Smith as Christine, Doon Mackichan as Cathy and Jonathan Watson as her husband Colin Whyte, Jamie Quinn as the Bairds’ son Ian and Kieran Hodgson as his boyfriend Gordon.


Graeme ‘Grado’ Stevely and Joy McAvoy, who play young couple Alan and Michelle, will not feature in the Christmas special but will be back for the fifth series, which is due to be recorded and shown next year.


Two Doors Down was launched with a Hogmanay special at the end of 2013 before going onto become the much loved series. It last had a Christmas special in 2018, with its fourth series going on to air in 2019. It has received multiple awards including the Best Comedy award at the 2017 Royal Television Society Scotland Awards and Elaine C. Smith won Best Actress at the BAFTA Scotland Awards in 2018. It is one of BBC Two and BBC Scotland’s top performing comedies. Over the course of 2020, Two Doors Down has been shown on the BBC Scotland channel, with all four series available to watch on BBC iPlayer where it has been gathering an army of new fans. In total the four series have amassed more than 30m requests on BBC iPlayer. It is a BBC Studios Comedy production, written by Simon Carlyle and Gregor Sharp. 


The fifth series had been re-commissioned by Shane Allen, Controller of BBC Comedy, and Patrick Holland, Controller of BBC Two, who also gave the go-ahead for the Christmas 2020 special.


Tuesday 20 October 2020


THE nominations for The British Academy of Film and Television Arts in Scotland (BAFTA Scotland) are in and Guilt is leading the way with five nominations alongside Elizabeth Is Missing with four nominations.  

We always love a red carpet at and we will be sure to get our sequins on for the big event this year - even if it is virtual. 

The very best talent in film, games and television produced in Scotland will be celebrated this year on Tuesday December 8. over the last year.

 First time nominees this year include Lois Chimimba (Group) Mirren Mack (The Nest) and Jamie Sives (Guilt) 

There’s also a new Audience Award in  

conjunction with Screen Scotland which sees productions including Black and Scottish, Guilt, 

Murder Trial: The Disappearance of Margaret Fleming, The Nest, Outlander and River City In the running, 

The Awards, which include two Outstanding Contribution Awards and the new Audience Awardwill be presented at the digital ceremony by Edith Bowman who tells us she will miss the heckles this year, but not the cold of the red carpet. 

Edith will host a socially distant, closed-studio show alongside Sanjeev Kohli and other guest presenters. 

The ceremony will be live streamed from 19.00 GMT on BAFTA’Facebook and YouTubechannels and followed by a highlights show on BBC Scotland at 22.00 GMT.  

Members of the public can cast their vote for the Audience Award from 10.00 GMT on 21 October until 17.00 GMT on 18 November on the BAFTA Scotland website (

Jude MacLaverty, Director of BAFTA Scotland, said: We are absolutely delighted to be announcing our British Academy Scotland Award nominations, which highlight the phenomenal level of talent and creativity in the film, game and television industries within Scotland. We are also thrilled to welcome EE back as the Official Network Partner to the Awards this year and to be working in partnership with Screen Scotland on a brand new Audience Award. During these challenging times, TV has both entertained and informed the public, and it seems only fitting that the viewing public is given the chance to have their say. Although our Awards format is different this year, our passion for and commitment to recognising talent and celebrating achievement remains, and we are really looking forward to celebrating all of our nominees on 8 December.”

Edith Bowman, returning host of the ceremony, added: I am very excited to be returning to host the British Academy Scotland Awards, albeit for a slightly different show this year. Now, more than ever, it is vital that we celebrate and recognise the achievements of the country’s film, games and television industries, reminding everyone of the importance and enjoyment of the arts.  This year’s list of nominees highlight yet again the wealth of creative talent and craft that exists in Scotland. I can’t wait to announce this year's winners on 8 December.” 






ACTOR TELEVISION sponsored by Audi UK


NCUTI GATWA Sex Education





GLENDA JACKSON Elizabeth is Missing




STEWART KYASIMIRE - Black and Scottish

JOHN MACLAVERTY - The Battle of Skye Bridge

MATT PINDER - Murder Trial: The Disappearance of Margaret Fleming


DIRECTOR - FICTION sponsored by Champagne Taittinger


LYNSEY MILLER Deadwater Fell

AISLING WALSH Elizabeth is Missing  



SCOT SQUAD: THE CHIEF’S ELECTION INTERVIEWS Jack Docherty, Joe Hullait, Iain Davidson, Marie McDonald - The Comedy Unit/BBC Scotland 

SELLING SCOTLAND Jack Docherty, Mark Downie, Liam McArdle, Julyan Sinclair - IWC Media/BBC Scotland

TEST DRIVE Derek McLean, Daniel Nettleton, Lynsey Wylie, Katy Smith – Bandicoot Scotland/BBC Scotland



DARREN MCGARVEY'S SCOTLAND Harry Bell, Stephen Bennett, Darren McGarvey, Ceara East - Tern Television/BBC Scotland 

FRANKIE BOYLE'S TOUR OF SCOTLAND Mick McAvoy, Nicky Waltham, Graeme Hart, Frankie Boyle -Two Rivers Media/BBC Two

MURDER TRIAL: THE DISAPPEARANCE OF MARGARET FLEMING Matt Pinder, Audrey McColligan, Iain Scollay, Lorraine McKechnie – Firecrest Films/BBC Scotland



A COUNTRY LIFE FOR HALF THE PRICE Kate Humble, Andrew Jackson, Louise Scrivens, Iain Robson – Raise the Roof Productions/Channel 5

LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION Production Team - IWC Media/Channel 4

SCOTLAND'S HOME OF THE YEAR Production Team – IWC Media/BBC Scotland



AUTONAUTS Aaron Puzey, Gary Penn - Denki

CLOUDPUNK Marko Dieckmann, Thomas Welsh, Rebecca Roe, Roman Agapov - Ion Lands

DEAD END JOB Production Team - Ant Workshop



THE NINE Production Team - BBC Scotland

SCOTLAND'S LOCKDOWN (DISCLOSURE)Production Team - BBC Scotland/BBC One Scotland

THE WAR NEXT DOOR: SCOTLAND AND THE TROUBLES Brendan Hughes, Harry Bell, Morag Tinto, Andrew Chambers – Tern Television/BBC Scotland 



BETTY Will Anderson - Autoproduction

THE LAST TRAIN Ross Hogg, Sean Mulvenna – LUX Scotland/BBC

THE MOTORIST Ciaran Lyons, Beth Allan, David Liddell, Chris Lyons - Forest of Black



THE BATTLE OF SKYE BRIDGE Harry Bell, John MacLaverty, Noel Nelis, Cara Maclean – Tern Television Productions/BBC Scotland
BEING GAIL PORTER Harry Bell, Anne-Claire Pilley – Tern Television Productions/BBC Scotland
DOOMAN Darren Hercher, Dave Arthur, Karen Emsley – CTVC/BBC Scotland


SPECIALIST FACTUAL sponsored by Deloitte

CLIMATEGATE: SCIENCE OF A SCANDALProduction Team - Red Sky Productions/BBC Four

GREG DAVIES: LOOKING FOR KES Jenny Dames, Richard Bright, David Arthur, Fran Kilgour – BBC Studios/BBC Four

MISS WORLD 1970: BEAUTY QUEENS AND BEDLAM Hannah Berryman, Lizzie Webster, Patrick Smith, Richard Bright - BBC Studios/BBC Two



DEADWATER FELL Production Team – Kudos/Channel 4

ELIZABETH IS MISSING Andrea Gibb, Aisling Walsh, Sarah Brown, Chrissy Skinns – STV Productions/BBC One
GUILT Production Team - Expectation/Happy Tramp North/BBC Scotland


WRITER FILM/TELEVISION supported by Screen Scotland

ANDREA GIBB Elizabeth is Missing


PAUL LAVERTY Sorry We Missed You


THE BAFTA SCOTLAND AUDIENCE AWARD in partnership with Screen Scotland