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Eilidh Whiteford, MP for Banff & Buchan

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WHITEFORD PRAISES GLENDAVENY PRODUCTS ON FYVIE VISIT

Monday, 31 August 2009

SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford has given her backing to the Glendaveny social enterprises based at the Willowbank Centre, near Peterhead, for adults with special needs. The famous Glendaveny Teddy Bears are made there as are the increasingly-popular Glendaveny Jams and Preserves.

The SNP candidate caught up with Di Faithfull at Fyvie Castle where she was staffing the Glendaveny stand as part of the Homecoming event held yesterday.

Commenting, Eilidh Whiteford said:

“I was pleased to be able to visit the Willowbank Centre back in May where I met the staff and service users with my colleague Ian Hudghton MEP, so it was very good to catch up with Di who was busy promoting Glendaveny teddy bears and jams as part of the Homecoming.

“As well as making some quality products locally which are also sold through a dedicated outlet in Peterhead town centre, the whole ethos around Glendaveny products is extremely innovative and worthwhile and performs a valuable function in helping people.

“I’m also very pleased to report that I can highly recommend Glendaveny’s strawberry and redcurrant jam!”

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HIGH SPEED PROPOSAL WELCOME, BUT NORTH-EAST MUST NOT BE FORGOTTEN

Thursday, 27 August 2009

Following reports that Network Rail has proposed a new £34 billion high-speed railway line linking London and Scotland by 2030, SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford has welcomed the proposals.

Commenting, Eilidh Whiteford said.

“The SNP has previously pressured the UK Government for assurances that any future high speed rail project would be continued into Scotland. It is crucial not only for our economic but also our environmental goals and the proposed link from network rail would certainly compete with flying.

“However the proposal still requires to be approved by the UK Government, who have been vague in the past as to their intentions of high speed links reaching Scotland. I sincerely hope that UK Transport Minister Lord Adonis ensures that this link is stretched past the Midlands providing Scotland with the benefits that this improved infrastructure will offer.

“The current proposals only take the high speed link as far as Glasgow and Edinburgh. It is imperative for the North-east that the network is expanded to Aberdeen, and I would urge Network Rail to include this in their plans. In the meantime further thought needs to be given as to how existing links from the Central Belt can be upgraded to take advantage of the proposed new links.”

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WHITEFORD WARNS AGAINST FUEL TAX HIKE

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford and SNP colleagues are calling on the UK Government to scrap next weeks planned 2p increase on fuel prices - warning the hike could hinder economic recovery.

The SNP has vigorously opposed previous fuel price rises and Eilidh Whiteford says it is a tax on rural Scotland where car use is a necessity and not a luxury.

With fuel prices once again over one pound per litre the SNP candidate believes that for many families and rural businesses the planned tax hike will put yet more pressure on stretched budgets.

Speaking ahead of the next week's tax deadline the SNP's Eilidh Whiteford said:

"Pushing up fuel prices is absolutely the wrong thing to do in the grip of recession and this increase could actually hinder economic recovery.

"Just when the UK government should be stimulating the economy, the Treasury is intent on slapping another 2p on the price of petrol and diesel - hitting already hard-pressed households and businesses. The increase is especially damaging for the haulage industry.

"Fuel duty now accounts for about 71 pence of every pound the motorist spends at the pump and for areas like Banff & Buchan where many have no choice but to use cars this is a severe financial burden.

"Increases in fuel duty are not a green tax, they are a Brown one, and people across Scotland have had their fill of Labours fuel duty increases. What Treasury Ministers in London forget is that for people in rural areas, a car is a necessity and not a luxury.

"On the back of an income tax hike affecting the lowest paid a further tax increase would be simply scandalous."

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HENDRY CONGRATULATES GRAMPIAN POLICE PIPE BAND

Monday, 24 August 2009

Grampian Police Joint Board member and Mid-Formartine SNP councillor Allan Hendry has congratulated Grampian Police Pipe Band on being crowned Champion of Champions for the North of Scotland.

Councillor Hendry, a former drum major in the pipe band and former police officer, has sent his personal congratulations to Pipe Major Drew Sinclair, Lead Drummer Nicky Gibson and band manager Murray Main.

The band – fresh from a stunning performance at the World Championships in Glasgow – retained their standing as the best pipes and drums at a competition in Mintlaw. SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford also attended the event held in Aden Country Park on Sunday.

The band triumphed in the Grade 1 and Grade 2 sections also won the best bass drum section of the competition and the best overall North of Scotland drum corps in Grade 1 and 2.

Commenting, Councillor Allan Hendry said:

"This is the result of many months of hard work and dedication by all the band members. As a former drum major, I know just how much efforts the band members have put in and their success is thoroughly deserved."

SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford who was at the Aden Park event added:

"In spite of the weather, a very large crowd turned out to give support to the bands. I was pleased to be able to attend and congratulate Grampian Police Pipe Band on their success."

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SALMOND PRESENTS AWARDS AT UK TUG-O-WAR CHAMPIONSHIPS

Banff & Buchan MP Alex Salmond was at Banff Rugby Club, Duff House, Banff on Sunday to present some of the awards at the UK Tug-O-War Championships.

SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford was also in attendance and met local team Cornhill and chatted with supporters.

Commenting after the event Alex Salmond said:

"I very much enjoyed the Tug-O-War Championships in Banff on Sunday and it was a privilege to present the prizes to the club teams.

"The event drew in huge crowds and was a great chance to highlight what a fantastic place the North-east is to host such a prestigious event. I would like to congratulate all the teams that took part for making it such a fantastic day."

SNP Westminster candidate Eilidh Whiteford added:

"Despite the terrible weather on the Sunday, this really was a tremendous event and full credit must go to the organisers and the teams who took part. I am of course particularly pleased that the local team from Cornhill performed so well.

"I was chatting to some of the Irish contingent in the clubhouse afterwards and they were impressed with their visit to Banffshire. I very much hope that this event comes back to Banff in the future."

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LOCAL MP WELCOMES FURTHER £2 MILLION POUND INVESTMENT AT MACRAE FRASERBURGH

Banff & Buchan MP Alex Salmond today visited Fraserburgh's largest employer, Macrae, to mark completion of the first phase of a £2 million investment programme to upgrade its fish processing factory. Also visiting the Macrae plant was SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford.

Macrae Fraserburgh, part of The Seafood Company, has a core staff of 550 and employs up to 800 staff during peak season, contributing more than £9 million to the local economy.

The company has now finished the £1 million refurbishment to its smoked fish facilities with a new kiln built on site and the addition of new loading bays. A further £1 million of upgrades to the site will be made over the next two years.

Speaking in Fraserburgh, Alex Salmond said:

"Macrae Fraserburgh has a vital role within the local economy. The company's continued growth, investment and employment in Fraserburgh brings significant benefits to the North-east economy. It is the area's largest employer and contributes more than £9 million to the Scottish economy.

"The £2 million upgrade of the factory will provide better facilities for the 800 staff working at the seafood factory and enable even greater outturn of produce.

"The Fraserburgh factory produces 3.4 million packs of fish, largely salmon, every month. I am particularly impressed to hear that 2.6 million salmon are processed each year, 99 per cent of which comes from Scotland. If these were laid end to end it would span 1,250 miles, proving the global reach of the Fraserburgh company!

"Macrae is a key player in Scotland's food industry and a great contributor to our economy. I wish the company and its staff the very best in its improved site."

SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford added:

"Macraes are a valued local employer as well as a highly-regarded company. The local Fraserburgh economy benefits enormously from the company's presence here, as does the Scottish fishing industry, from which the company buys £43 million-worth of fish annually.

"I was delighted to be able to visit the company today and to hear at first hand details of this Fraserburgh success story."

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CRUDEN BAY MAN’S FLOWER SHOW SUCCESS

Saturday, 15 August 2009

Cruden Bay man Derek Stephen walked off with the trophy for most points in the cut flowers section at Cruden Bay Flower Show.

Mr Stephen was exhibiting at the village show which was held last Saturday and took the top award in the section with his selection of cut flowers. During the show, Mr Stephen met up with SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford, who was one of the judges of the Best Kept Garden competition.

Commenting after the show, Eilidh Whiteford said:

"There was a fantastic display of flowers, plants and vegetables at the show. It was quite clear to observers that a tremendous amount of hard work goes in over the year to achieve that sort of quality.

“I was pleased to meet with Mr Stephen, whose enthusiasm was well-rewarded with the many prizes he won on Saturday.”

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RORA HALL BENEFITS FROM LOCAL MP’s VIEWS ON ECONOMY

Friday, 14 August 2009

SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford was in Rora last week presenting the hall committee with a cheque on behalf of local MP Alex Salmond.

The hall was the recipient of a £75 donation received by Mr Salmond for taking part in a survey on the economy carried out by a respected research organisation.

Banff & Buchan MP Alex Salmond explained:

“From time to time in my capacity as local Member of Parliament, I receive requests to take part in opinion surveys from research organisations, which normally offer a small fee for taking part. I donate these fees to worthy causes and organisations within the constituency and I was pleased to pass on this latest one to Rora Hall.

“I am aware that the hall committee have recently refurbished their hall and built an extension so I hope that this small amount will come in useful.”

Commenting, Eilidh Whiteford said:

“Village halls fulfill an extremely useful social function and it is vital that they are well-used and get the support that they deserve from their community.

“I have been at functions and events at Rora Hall several times now and it is a lovely facility. The hall committee are very proud of their new hall and have a busy programme of events throughout the year.

“I am pleased to be able to help them in some small way.”

Forthcoming events being held by Rora Hall Committee include a Quiz Night on Saturday 22 August and a concert during September.

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LOCAL COUNCILLOR & CANDIDATE JUDGE VILLAGE'S GREEN-FINGERED EFFORTS

Thursday, 6 August 2009

Cruden Bay's green-fingered gardening enthusiasts had their efforts judged on Wednesday night by Peterhead South & Cruden councillor Stephen Smith and SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford.

A large entry of 26 gardens across the village were competing for the titles of 'Best Kept Garden', Best Senior Citizen's Garden' and 'Most Productive Garden' in the annual competition organised by Cruden Bay Horticultural Society.

Councillor Stephen Smith commented:

"It was a great honour to be asked by Cruden Bay Horticultural Association to judge the garden competition this year, but it was very difficult choosing the winners.

"All of the gardens we visited had much to commend them and it was clear that a lot of very hard work goes into these gardens from their proud owners."

Commenting after the judging, Eilidh Whiteford said:

"The gardens we visited were just beautiful and everyone who was entered into the competition should feel proud of their efforts.

"It was especially pleasing visiting people who didn't know their garden had been entered and had been nominated by local people because of the fantastic display. To be nominated by the community in that way is quite a reward for your efforts."

The winners will be announced and presented with their prizes at Cruden Bay Flower Show on Saturday 9 August in Port Erroll Public Hall, Cruden Bay.

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TOPPING & WHITEFORD WELCOME FRASERBURGH REGENERATION CASH

Local SNP councillor Brian Topping and SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford have warmly welcomed today's announcement by the Scottish Government that Fraserburgh is to benefit from an award of over £¼ million towards town centre regeneration.

Councillor Topping has been a driving force in pushing for Fraserburgh to benefit from the scheme and raised the matter at a meeting of the full Aberdeenshire Council back in March, where he received a commitment from the Provost that the council would be fully supportive of a bid going forward for funding.

Commenting on the success, Councillor Brian Topping said:

"I am ecstatic at this news and for the Broch and for Fraserburgh Development Trust.

"When the SNP Government introduced this scheme I said right from the start that the Broch should be in there demanding a slice of the funding. I was delighted when I managed to get the backing of the Provost at a meeting of the full council for my proposal and I am looking forward to this money making a positive difference to our town centre.

“The SNP Government is to be congratulated for continuing to take action to protect our local communities from the effects of the "Downing Street Downturn". Along with the small business bonus which has seen rates slashed or removed for our local small businesses, this scheme will help deliver tangible benefits for our town centres."

SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford added:

"This is great news for Fraserburgh and I congratulate Brian on his role in helping to achieve this.

"Brian has been a key player in helping get Aberdeenshire Council to swing its weight behind this project, which has delivered this success for the Broch. I congratulate everyone involved in this achievement, particularly the Fraserburgh Development Trust."

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WHITEFORD CONGRATULATES TURRIFF SHOW ON SUCCESS

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford has hailed this year’s ‘Homecoming’ Turriff Show as an outstanding success.

The SNP candidate visited the show and met with local businesses and industry representatives groups including NFU Scotland, the Scottish Tenant Farmer’s Association and the Scottish Rural Property & Business Association.

Banff & Buchan MSP Stewart Stevenson was also in attendance and toured the showground after holding a surgery for constituents.

Commenting, Eilidh Whiteford said:

“I am absolutely delighted for the show organisers that it has gone so well for them.

“The crowd seemed to be up on last year, helped no doubt by very good weather on the whole, especially on the second day.

“Turriff Show truly is one of Scotland’s premier events and I think this was reflected in the fact it was selected to be one of the official ‘Homecoming’ events this year.”

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