Sport Charlie Mulgrew admits the Celtic squad are not thinking about breaking any records despite 23-match unbeaten run

Mulgrew was on target as Celtic thumped Kilmarnock to edge closer to another Scottish Premiership title

Stagecoach set record of shame ful record of shame

Glenda Cooper on the troubled past of the new rail franchisee

MYTH OF A PLOUGHBOY

As Burns' Night, 1996, celebrates the bicentenary of the poet's death, a new Life examines the story of the 'lewd, amazing peasant of genius'

Burns Festival in chaos after organiser flees

Cash crisis and rumours plunge poet's bicentenary celebrations into disarray

OBITUARY:Elspeth Davie

One's first impression of Elspeth Davie was of her smallness; the second of her extreme shyness. One of her friends described her as looking like a mouse, neat, nervous, undeniably small. She could also have been mistaken for one of Miss Jean Brodie's young girls, a Morningside lady mingling the intellectual with the tearoom. This would have been an error. In her writing she may well have been the creme de la creme, but that phrase implies a certain self-esteem, an awareness of inner strength. Elspeth Davie was implacably modest, the least self-assertive of human beings or writers.

LETTER: Scottish memory

From Mr Tom Fulton

IN BRIEF: Social workers to escape prosecution

IN BRIEF

Chemicals firm wins cattle sickness case

The chemical waste disposal company Rechem International was cleared of blame yesterday for cattle sickness which destroyed a dairy herd grazing on land near one of its incinerators. The dismissal of a pounds 1.5m High Court action for damages by two Scottish farmers, Andrew and Irene Graham, marked the end of one of the longest civil trials in legal history.

Stagecoach buy referred

Stagecoach buy referred

Scottish election results

ABERDEEN

Tories are wiped out in Scottish elections

The Government suffered its worst-ever defeat early today at the hands of the Scots. With most of the votes counted in the council elections north of the border, it was clear that John Major's attempt to "relaunch" the Conservative Party had suffered a damaging blow.

`I would cry to myself: Why? Why? Why have they done this?'

Imagine if social workers took your children away for five years. That is what happened to three families in Ayrshire, whose children were ordered to be returned yesterday. John Arlidge spoke to one couple about their agony of waiting

Abuse and the serial offenders

The Ayrshire report reveals familiar deficiencies in investigating child-sex cases, argues Allan Levy

`Ritual abuse' families tell of years of hell

Parents bitterly attack Ayrshire social workers whose reports robbed them of their children.

Nightmare is over for `ritual abuse' families

BY JOHN ARLIDGE

Overdose inquiry told of drugs at rave club

One of three young men who died from a drug overdose at the Hanger 13 rave club in Ayr last year went to the club to buy a drug called Grievous Bodily Harm, a fatal accident inquiry was told yesterday, writes John Arlidge.
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there