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2020 In Review: What happened in July, August and September?

Everything Is Going To Be Alright by Turner Prize winner
Martin Creed.
Everything Is Going To Be Alright by Turner Prize winner Martin Creed.

Attention from across the world was focused on the north-east when, on August 12, three people were killed and six injured in a horrific train crash.

Heavy rain overnight led to a landslip on the railway line near Carmont, west of Stonehaven, causing a high speed train to derail.

Tributes were paid to Brett McCullough, Donald Dinnie and Christopher Stuchbury from across the world of transport, and thousands of pounds were raised in donations for their families.

There was also praise for off-duty ScotRail worker Nicola Whyte who, despite being injured herself, escaped the wreckage and walked three miles to raise the alarm and find help.

Just days before the crash, a series of local lockdown measures were imposed upon Aberdeen following a cluster of coronavirus cases linked to the hospitality industry.

Having started spreading at the Hawthorn Bar, it quickly involved 27 other premises. Health chiefs eventually determined that 263 people had been affected, with 1,265 close contacts identified.

During this time First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said she was “furious” at eight players from Aberdeen FC who had broken lockdown rules to visit a bar – sparking the cancellation of an upcoming match and putting other fixtures in jeopardy.

That same month youngsters from across Scotland sat at their letterboxes impatiently waiting for their exam results.

While they initially faced predicted grades based on an algorithm, many found their final marks were lower than expected – prompting a dramatic reversal of the entire system and easing the disappointment of thousands of students.

 

 

Timeline

July 6: Beer gardens and outdoor dining reopen in Scotland.

July 10: Scotland moves into Phase 3 of its coronavirus route map, allowing for the reopening of hairdressers, pubs and visitor attractions.

July 21: Fears are raised that a “life-saving” flyover over the A90 Aberdeen to Dundee road at Laurencekirk could be delayed because of four objectors.

July 27: The operator of Aberdeen Market is fined £80,000 following the death of 80-year-old Frank Finnie, who lay undiscovered after falling down a dark flight of stairs in June 2018.

July 27: A major search operation is launched for George McGowan, 77, who got lost on Ben Bhraggie near Golspie. He is found after using a bike wing mirror to signal an SOS to a police helicopter.

July 30: Jackson Carlaw quits as leader of the Scottish Conservatives, just months after taking on the role. He is replaced by Moray MP Douglas Ross.

July 30: Argos announces it will stop printing its famed catalogue after almost 50 years.

August 3: The Eat Out To Help Out scheme is rolled out across the UK.

August 4: Students across Scotland are given moderated results by the SQA, with 124,000 grades lower than estimated.

August 4: Two explosions caused by poorly-stored chemicals in Beirut, Lebanon, kill 220 people and injure thousands more.

August 5: Local lockdown measures are imposed on Aberdeen.

August 5: Douglas Ross is named new Scottish Conservative leader.

August 11: Youngsters return to the classroom with the reopening of Scottish schools.

August 27: Sir Ed Davy is elected new leader of the Liberal Democrats.

August 28: Prison chiefs say work on a new jail for Inverness could begin in 2021 – but warn the total cost has soared by £26m to a total of £92m.

September 8: Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis says post-Brexit trading agreements could break international law in a “very specific and limited way”.

September 9: Shetland Islands Council agrees to look at options for “financial and political self-determination”.

September 10: The Protect Scotland contract tracing app launches.

September 25: A helicopter which crashed off the coast of Shetland in August 2013, killing four people, was caused by “pilot error,” Sheriff Principal Derek Pyle rules.

September 28: A series of coronavirus clusters is detected at Aberdeen University, with 216 people affected and “no evidence” of any wider spread.

 

 

PICS

Picture by SANDY McCOOK 6th July ’20<br />Beer Gardens back in operation after the Covid-19 lockdown.<br />The Innes Bar in Innes Street, Inverness among the first to reopen in the city. Jordan Morrison and Holly Tomlinson enjoy the dropping of restrictions.

CHEERS: Jordan Morrison and Holly Tomlinson enjoy a drink at The Innes Bar, Inverness, following the reopening of beer gardens. Picture by Sandy McCook.

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SEAFOOD: Prime Minister Boris Johnson has his hands full as he holds crabs caught at Stromness Harbour during a visit to Scotland. Picture by Robert Perry.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson holds crabs caught on the Carvela at Stromness Harbour in Stromness during a visit to the Highlands and Northern Isles of Scotland. PA Photo. Picture date: Thursday July 23, 2020. See PA story POLITICS Johnson. Photo credit should read: Robert Perry/PA Wire

 

POLITICS Johnson
MODELS: Ted Miller of Thurso shows off his hand-crafted collection of eight lifeboats which he has built over the last 25 years. Picture by Sandy McCook.

Picture by SANDY McCOOK 17th July ’20<br />Modelmaker Ted Miller of Thurso shows off his hand crafted collection of lifeboats which he has built. CR0022492

 

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CORONATION: The crowning of Buchan Queen Natasha Clueit launched a week of virtual events for Peterhead Scottish Week. Picture by Kath Flannery.
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Peterhead Scottish Week. The crowning of the queen ceremony this year was held privately and socially distanced in accordance with Covid-19 restrictions and was live streamed. Buchan Queen Natasha Clueit. CR0022440<br />18/07/20<br />Picture by KATH FLANNERY

 

LOCKDOWN: Keith McKenzie closes the doors of The Grill in Aberdeen to comply with local coronavirus restrictions imposed on the city. Picture by Andrew Milligan.

HEALTH Coronavirus Scotland 17360731

Keith McKenzie closes the door of The Grill in Aberdeen at 1700, after bars, cafes and restaurants have been ordered to close as lockdown restrictions are reimposed in over a coronavirus cluster in the area. A five-mile travel rule has been put in place and residents are being told not to enter each other’s houses as First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said 54 cases have now been reported in the outbreak. PA Photo. Picture date: Wednesday August 5, 2020. See PA story HEALTH Coronavirus Scotland. Photo credit should read: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

 

ART: Turner Prize winner Martin Creed unveiled a multi-coloured neon sign in the grounds of Braemar Castle. Picture by Sim Canetty Clarke.

Everything is going to be alright – by Turner Prize winner<br />Martin Creed<br />NEW ART INSTALLATION REVEALED BY THE FIFE ARMS<br />10 AUG 2020<br />Not one to let a crisis stand in the way of art, The Fife Arms in the Scottish village of Braemar has unveiled the latest piece in its extensive collection.<br />Martin Creed’s Work No.3435, Everything Is Going To Be Alright (Photo credit Sim Canetty Clarke)

 

SAND: A 32-ft coin marking the 75th anniversary of Victory in Japan day was created in the sand at Aberdeen beach. Picture by Dougie Bogie.
LS-150820-997.JPG

To go with story by Katie Paterson. The 10 meter wide coin, which depicts one of the 120 coins given out to surviving veterans and families of the deceased today, to mark the 75th anniversary of Victory in Japan day. Picture shows; sand artist Dougie Bogie created a ‘Victory75’ Commemorative Coin in the sand.. Aberdeen Beach. Courtesy Dougie Bogie Date; 15/08/2020 SUNSET CEREMONY VJ Day 75<br />VICTORIOUS SAND ART IN ABERDEEN

 

TRAGEDY: Three people were killed and six more injured when a train hit a landslip and derailed near Carmont, west of Stonehaven, after heavy rains hit the region. Picture by Darrell Benns.

A train derailed near Stonehaven.<br />Pictures by Darrell Benns 12/08/2020.

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STADIUM: A limited number of fans are welcomed into Pittodrie to see Aberdeen play Kilmarnock during the pandemic. Picture by Stephen Dobson/ ProSports/ Shutterstock
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WIND: Anthony Harley braves the winds in Elgin as Storm Francis passes over Scotland. Picture by Jason Hedges.
PJ-JH-250820-02-005

Pictures by JASON HEDGES<br />Anthony Harley from Elgin is passing through Lossiemouth as storm Francis begins to take effect in Moray!<br />Pictures by JASON HEDGES

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