Hello and welcome to this week’s Editor’s Pick where I select my favourite pieces from The Herald and offer some background as to why they have stood out and the reasons for choosing to run them.

I am going to start on Sunday, with our investigation into the proposals to pilot juryless rape trials in Scotland. This was an exclusive piece by journalist Liam Kirkaldy who spoke in detail with rape victims about their experiences of our judicial system. It took bravery and strength for them to speak out and I thank them for doing so.

This topic has hit the headlines many times this month as the backlash to the proposals has been furious. Many senior lawyers have framed the pilot as an attack on the basic principles of justice, for example.

So why were we so keen to run this piece? To offer another perspective, to add more depth to the debate and to allow our readers exposure to as much information on the issue as possible. As one woman interviewed said: “If they don’t think the changes will work, then what will? Let’s have a constructive conversation.”


Another highlight for me this week was a piece by our environment correspondent Vicky Allan who on Tuesday produced perfectly pitched digital content off the back of the news that huge quantities of untreated sewage is entering our waters.

Her 10 of the dirtiest beaches (with bathing waters status) in Scotland listicle has been a top performer all week and has been picking up a great deal of search traffic too.

On Tuesday, we had a great deal of discussion in the newsroom over Caroline Wilson’s piece about a three-month police pilot on the Isle of Bute which will see officers on call rather than on shift from 12am to 8am during the week and from 2am to 8am at weekends.

Emergency calls will now be directed to staff at a Glasgow call centre who will then alert local officers to respond. A former officer who served on the island for 17 years described the pilot – which is now underway – as ‘dangerous’, believing it is an ‘open invitation for criminality’.

“It doesn't take the smartest criminal in the world to figure out that if he's got ten minutes rather than two minutes, it makes life a lot easier,” he argued.

We also used the story as our print splash as we believe it is worthy of much publicity and further discussion. Is this a sign of things to come as public sector budgets become increasingly strained? Give us your views: letters@theherald.co.uk

My final highlight of the week? An opinion piece on Wednesday by the award-winning author Kerry Hudson who spoke about her love of food and the hidden gems where she has discovered some of the finest pasta and pizza dishes.

Perhaps you are thinking Rome? Or ‘the Trevi Fountain, perhaps the canals of Venice, or cathedrals of Palermo?’ she writes.

No, think ‘a council estate in Mansewood, the south side of Glasgow’ nestled between ‘a Day-Today Express and the local pharmacy’. Beautiful, uplifting, entertaining and thought-provoking writing, as always, by Hudson who is one of our many brilliant columnists at The Herald.

And lastly, these highlights and more rely on your continued support. Our sale is now live and you can get a whole year of The Herald starting from £24. We hope you'll enjoy all that your subscription has to offer.

Catherine Salmond

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