Edinburgh said it expected to become the first local authority in Britain to impose a tax on tourists, saying it would raise £15m a year which would help pay for the festivals and other events. However, hotels were unhappy at the plan, arguing that they would be targeted. They have a point. How would shops distinguish between tourists and residents? How would it work for tram, bus and taxi fares? There is more to be said on this one.
Shares in the outsourcing firm Capita crashed after a profits warning, causing investors to fear a repeat of the Carillion crisis. However, there were assurances that it was in much better shape.
In what looked like the week’s understatement, the BBC published a report on the gender pay gap from PwC saying the corporation’s approach to setting pay in general “has been far from perfect”. It came as the Scottish government pledged a new law to ensure that women make up at least half of the membership of public boards.
While football’s administrators were pondering the future, those who run darts decided that the famous ‘walk on girls’ were now out of place in equality Britain. One who was interviewed on BBC Radio Scotland’s Kaye Adams show regretted the decision and said it had been a “huge privilege to take part”, never having felt she had been “objectified”. Asked what the job entailed, she replied: “All you are doing is escorting the players to the oche. You stand for a couple of minutes, you smile and then you walk off.”
“Right…okay,” said a seemingly unimpressed Ms Adams.
There was something inevitable about a delay to replacing the Ross Bandstand in Edinburgh’s Princes St Gardens. Such has been the wait that no one would have been surprised at behind the scenes wrangling over who will be responsible for repair and maintenance of the new structure…if it is ever built. No one yet seems to have asked why it is intended to build a hobbit-style structure when any big performance (New Year, Sleep in the Park) requires a much larger stage than the one proposed….
Sir Richard Branson announced he would be bringing the first Virgin Hotel in Britain to Edinburgh, thus reigniting another controversy, this time over the long-running objections to the plans for converting the historic India Buildings.
Onwards to the reception for finalists in the Scottish Property Awards, held at the Marriott Courtyard hotel in Baxters Place, Edinburgh. It was notable for being an almost male-only event, apart from the ‘walk-on girls’ who were handing out name tags and drinks.