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Cumbrian motorcyclists to help save lives

A life-saving new scheme has been launched in Cumbria.

Blood Bikes will see volunteer motorcyclists providing free out of hours transport for blood and medical supplies.

Blood transportation is an expensive business.

In Cumbria alone 700 units of blood are used a month across our hospitals, that equates to 23 units a day.

Hospitals in our region also transport between their sites four or five times a week, with two or three of these urgent transfers.

Now anyone with a motorbike licence and a willingness to learn could help.

Our reporter Fiona McIlwraith reports on how having Blood Bikes in our region will be a massive benefit for our hospitals.

Highlights: 2014 Common Ridings and Festivals

Thousands have celebrated the Common Ridings and Festivals right across the South of Scotland this summer,.

From the 500th anniversary being celebrated in Hawick, to the riding of the marches taking place in Sanquhar on Sunday.

The ride-outs, ceremonies and fancy dress parades have been as popular as ever, all part of the Homecoming 2014 celebrations.

Lets take a look back at the highlights.


Scottish Borders Abattoir Ltd fined after employee's death

The owners of a Galashiels slaughterhouse have been fined £100,000 after being found guilty of two health and safety breaches following the death of an employee.

Meat porter David Barker from Selkirk died in an accident at the Winston Road premises in January 2011.

A jury trial at Jedburgh Sheriff Court heard how the 48-year-old was in a storage container loosening the fixings of a steel partition door which collapsed and trapped him by the neck, resulting in his death.

Scottish Borders Abattoir Ltd. was found guilty of failing to provide information, instruction, training and supervision to ensure the health and safety of Mr Barker.

The company was also found guilty by the jury of failing to carry out a risk assessment for the task between January 5, 2011, and January 19, 2011.

Defence lawyer Susan Duff QC told the jury Mr Barker had only been asked by the company's management to remove boxes from the container so that an assessment of the partition removal could take place and he had been acting without anyone's knowledge by unscrewing the fastenings.

But, after two hours of deliberation, the jury returned majority guilty verdicts on both charges.

A third charge of failing to carry out risk assessments between August 2006 and January 2011 for tasks unrelated to food management safety at the abattoir was dropped by the Crown during the trial.

Sheriff Kevin Drummond imposed a fine of £100,000 to cover both offences.

Borders schools pilot healthy eating campaign

Pupils in three Borders secondary schools are piloting a healthy eating campaign aimed at encouraging them to eat better quality food and take part in more outdoor activities.

The scheme has been developed by members of Scottish Borders West Youth Voice in partnership with Young Scot and Scottish Borders Council’s Schools Catering Team.

"We hope the campaign gains support in the Borders as it is such a great opportunity to encourage healthy eating and a balanced lifestyle. Young Scot is not only a great place to gain rewards and benefit from discounts, but it is also a great information service for young people."

– Jane Lochrie, West Youth Voice member

The initiative is being trialled in Earlston, Peebles and Selkirk high schools until February 2015.

It will then be reviewed and if deemed successful, rolled out to all nine Borders secondary schools.

It works with the existing cashless catering system and means that any young person who purchases a school meal will automatically be awarded Young Scot points which can then be exchanged for positive experiences or outdoor and sporting equipment via the Young Scot website.

“It’s an exciting and innovative way of encouraging young people to adopt a more healthy lifestyle and I would encourage all pupils at these three high schools to take every advantage of this unique opportunity.”

– Councillor Vicky Davidson, Scottish Borders Council
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