Scottish ladies of stage and screen who

rehabilitation project allows women to

:— Pit problems

The embattled Monktonhall Colliery has suffered a double blow in recent weeks with a fatal accident and a government announcement that it would be subsidising British Coal in order to save twelve other pits.

William Gorman. a 35-year-old miner from New Cumnock. was crushed to death when part of the roof of the shaft he was working in fell on him. Jackie Aitchison. chairman of the workers’ consortium that now runs Monktonhall. and himself a working miner. said: ‘iiveryone is obviously terribly upset. We extend every sympathy to his family and we will be very supportive of them in future.‘

As far as subsidies to British (‘oal were concerned. Aitchison added that various organisations in the mining industry would be asking the government why they intended to support British (‘oal when that would

affect competition. ‘We hope that some

of the lads will be protected.‘ he said. regarding the jobs that would be saved. ‘but in all reality. a lot of these pits will close down. They should go for it like we did and take their destiny in their own hands. I believe a number of collieries will go the same way as the Monktonhall project.‘

The colliery started turning coal on a large scale early in January and produces 5000 tons per year. It employs I70 people. a number that will rise if plans to develop a second face are carried out. Despite the current difficulties. Aitchison said: ‘With the known reserves our great-great grandchildren will have to decide what to do with the pit. At the moment we are turning away customers. it is angering that our colleagues down south are experiencing marketing difficulties while we have the opposite problem.‘

A spokesman for the Health and Safety Executive said that the Mine Inspectorate is investigating the fatal accident and. depending on its outcome. it is possible that a report could be sent to the Proctirator Fiscal. (Stewart Kirkpatrick)

Carol Laula

I AIDS benefit: Dorothy Paul. Li/ Lochhead. (‘arol Laula and Savourna Stevenson are jtist a few of the leading

will be appearing at a special AIDS benefit to be held at the Royal Lyceum Theatre in lidinburgh on Sunday 35 April. liiriclous ll'unmi. cotnpered by Sheena .\lcl)onald. w ill feature music and readings. and is being organised by (‘rtisaid (Scotland) for the Brenda Home Project. This .\'iddrie-based residential alcohol and drug

keep their children with them during the period of their stay. A total of 9200000 needs to be raised to expand the project to si\ flats and a day centre. Tickets. priced £5—£15 are available from the Lyceum Box Office (03] 22‘) 9697).

I Polygon prize: Edinburgh-based Polygon has beaten off 58 other challengers to win the Sunday Times Small Publisher of the Year Award. listablished in W70 under the wing of Iidinburgh L'niyersity Press. Polygon has gone on to premiere such authors as James Kelman. Janice (ialloway and Tom Leonard. With an output that

mixes poetry and fiction with Scottish

politics. Polygon was praised by the judges for its range of new authors and strong backlist. Previous winners of the £1000 prize have included Fourth Estate. Serpent's Tail and Blackstaff Press.

I Cycling contacts: Last month saw the launch of Bicycle Connection. a new organisation aimed solely at putting cyclists in touch with other like- mindcd cyclists across the country. The contact group hopes to link tip individual cyclists for day rides. weekends away. hostelling. and longer holidays. btit is also able to put its members in touch with cycling clubs. Further details are available (with SAl-I) from Bicycle Connection. 3 (.‘oborn Road. Bow. London [£3 EDA.

I 809 standard: Historical cludgies arc the order of the day at an exhibition at the Almond Valley Heritage (‘entre in Livingston. ‘The Sanitary (‘rusade’ describes some of the more primitive toilet arrangements which were once common in the shale-mining districts of the Lothians and charts the advance of modern sanitation. ‘()ther museums may offer hands-on exhibits.’ said Dr Robin ('hesters. the curator. 'but we are the first to offer a bottoms-on exhibition.’ 'The Sanitary (‘rusade‘ runs until 30 September and is open daily from l0am—-Spm.

I SYT grant: The future activities of the Scottish Youth Theatre are back on a firmer footing again after (ilasgow District Council awarded the company its full £63,000 annual grant. :\ previous meeting of the ('ouncil's grants sub-committee had decided to cut the grant by £11000. thereby severely limiting SY'I"s plans. The company was lured to its base in Buchanan Street's ()ld Athenactun Theatre in the lead-up to (ilasgow 's year as liuropean ('ity of ('ulture. and at the time was promised long-term financial support. Because of its Scotland-wide function. how ev er. (ilasgow councillors may now approach other local authorities for contributions to SYT’s long-term funding.



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