A year ago, the NHS in Scotland was visibly under strain.
THE nine-carriage express from Glasgow to Edinburgh is long overdue - in fact it does not yet exist.
With much of the UK still wrapped in the twin grip of austerity policies and rising living costs, Britain's biggest bank paid 93 of its senior UK staff more than £1 million last year.
THE chequered flag may yet be some way off, but it is good to see that Scots driver Susie Wolff is now inching towards the Formula One starting grid.
The debate about Scotland's future is hotting up, and it should not come as a surprise that oil has provoked the conflagration.
Anyone who has ever been forced to overpay on a bus fare because of an exact-money-only rule may have wondered how much extra revenue such a policy generates for the bus companies.
The men and women of the Tartan Army enjoy themselves wherever they go and the draw for Euro 2016 promises plenty of opportunities for a good time.
Scotland's colleges have had a difficult few years.
POLICE officers are among our most valued public servants.
THE idea that a network of food banks across Scotland would spring up to feed the hungry would have been unthinkable just a few years ago.
As a nation we can be spectacularly pessimistic about our sporting abilities, but such an attitude overlooks the fact success and failure at the highest level are separated by a hair's breadth.
The chief executive of RBS, Ross McEwan, was not appointed as a caretaker.
There is no question about it.
IF Scotland is to meet its ambitious target of having 100% of the country's electricity produced by renewable sources by 2020, hydro power will have an important part to play.
From the first moments of the referendum campaign, celebrities have been involved in the debate.
The violence that has erupted Ukraine is distressing and shocking, but the dispute and division that have led to it, although complicated, should not be dismissed as remote.
Changes in the pattern of women's employment is often driven by major events.
THE past few weeks have been somewhat sobering for the whisky trade, with both Diageo and Pernod Ricard warning of slower sales in China, in part related to measures implemented there to try to limit conspicuous consumption.
There has been no shortage over the years of schemes to help, or push, the unemployed into work.
THE links between Scotland and Canada are rightly cherished; Scots did much to build the modern nation across the Atlantic, and it in turn gave refuge and succour to many thousands from these shores.
Prisoner Arthur Duncan is guilty of a truly chilling crime.
So Danny Alexander has announced that the Scottish Government is to have the power to issue its own bonds.
ALEX Salmond explained in some detail yesterday why he believed George Osborne was bluffing when he rejected the First Minister's proposal for an independent Scotland to enter a currency union with the rest of the UK.
When Gregor Lawson and brothers Fraser and Ali Smeaton launched their superhero costumes business from their flat in Edinburgh, it promptly became a success.
The call from Police Scotland for the use of US-style "sobriety bracelets" as part of the sentencing of offenders is an idea well worth considering.
The pictures of thousands of skiers queuing up to take advantage of the snow at Glenshee this weekend should warm the hearts of anyone who cares about Scotland's outdoors industry.
The long, gruelling working week of a typical junior doctor was supposed to have been banished by the European Working Time Directive, but there is still concern about the hours trainee doctors are routinely having to work in Scotland's hospitals.
In the face of an unpleasant and persistent problem, the Care Inspectorate has been doing a good and reliable job.
This has been an important week for Scotland.
Every teenager knows that when they turn 17 they can sit their driving test.