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Footy in the forest

Two football matches will take place in the heart of a Scottish Borders forest.

Hundreds of trees have been cut down to make the forest pitch between Selkirk and Midlem, in woodland owned by the Duke of Buccleuch. The event is part of the 2012 Cultural Olympiad.

After being postponed in July because of a waterlogged pitch an SFA referee has now give the green light.

One of the matches is for men and the other for women. The people taking part have been made British citizens since 2000.

"Like me, the players are all really looking forward to Saturday and the chance to play in this unique sporting arena in a fantastic and beautiful part of Scotland."

– Craig Coulthard, organiser

Creative Scotland and the Arts Council of England helped finance the pitch through national lottery cash to the tune of almost half a million pounds.

Organisers anticipate around 1,000 spectators will attend with the games being shown online via a live internet broadcast.


Red squirrel cash

Nearly 50 thousand pounds has been awarded to a group which helps protect Cumbria's red squirrels.

The Heritage Lottery Fund has made the award which will help conserve and strengethen squirrel numbers in the Grizedale area.

The Westmorland Red Squirrel Society says the cash will be used to fund a two year project.

Red squirrels are our only native squirrel but have been displaced from most of England by

the introduced American grey.

Cumbria is one of the last strongholds for the animal.

Jackie Foott, the Project Coordinator, said: "We are delighted to have received the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund for a project protecting our iconic red squirrel which is such an important part of Cumbrian heritage."