My Column

Scots on track for bright future

  • Date: Monday 18th March 2019
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You may not always think it when your morning train has been delayed for the fifth day in a row, but in many regards, Scotland enjoys world-class transport links.

It’s great to see then that 2019 is looking like a bumper year for funding with plans to inject cash into projects up and down the country.

Scotland is undoubtedly becoming more and more connected.

Glasgow’s Subway – the only one in Scotland – was a real trail-blazer, being just the third of its kind in the world after opening in 1896. To date, it is the only system in the UK that runs entirely underground.

In recent years there have been ambitious plans unveiled for its extension, and we hope to see that addition happening in the near future.

Edinburgh’s tram line meanwhile has certainly had its fair share of bad press, but last week saw some good news as it was revealed that the line is to be extended from the city centre to Newhaven.

It will be expanded almost three miles at a cost of £207 million. This is as a result of the city’s ever-growing population and it is estimated that in the first year 16 million people will use the line. The original project ended up being twice the original budget - let’s hope the same doesn’t happen with this extension.

There’s also good news for air travellers with the plan to link Glasgow Airport with Paisley Gilmour Street station. Initially, it was proposed to create a link directly to the airport. However, it was proving to be tricky and raised significant challenges.

This came as part of the £1.13 billion Glasgow City Region deal which was agreed in 2014 and the direct link to the airport was initially expected to be operational by 2025.

I’m sure the link with Paisley Gilmour Street won’t come without any issues – it’s a complicated job –  but it will be a great way to connect the airport to the extensive railway network we have in Scotland.

Works are also well on their way with the £120 million redevelopment of Glasgow’s Queen Street Station, which is due to be completed in 2020. As well as a new contemporary building, there will also be an expanded concourse which will accommodate longer trains.

In fact, as part of Doors Open Week, the construction site surrounding the station will be open to the public.

This comes as part of an initiative to attract more people into careers in construction with 23 interesting sites pulling back their hoardings for public tours.

Other sites offering this opportunity are The Burrell Collection and Edinburgh University, which are both under construction to some extent.

Open Doors 2019, delivered by Build UK in partnership with CITB (Construction Industry Training Board), takes place at sites throughout the country from March 18-23.

I suggest taking advantage and familiarising yourself with some truly great facilities. You might even use our increasingly connected transport network to get yourself there.



Throughout my career, I’ve always sought out the expertise of others – simply sitting down and listening to those who have been there is the best crash course available.

As a young entrepreneur, attending speaker events with industry experts was always an eye-opener and helped me develop by own competitive edge in the market.

I’m privileged then to have the opportunity of grilling the exceptional Bobby Singh Esq about his journey in property at an event later this month.

Bobby is an authority on estate agency with over 30,000 LinkedIn followers and is the co-founder of - an award-winning business which has been labelled a true disruptor of the property market.

Bobby has built up his business and his own personal brand to become the face of modern estate agency and property management in the UK.

Drawing on Bobby’s wealth of national and international business experience, topics being discussed will include property management, entrepreneurship and Brexit implications for the housing industry. Audience members will also have the chance to ask Bobby questions and pick his brains on his recipe for success.

Having a wide commercial property portfolio myself, I’ll be interested to get Bobby’s take on business growth and the current state of the private housing market.

The evening is set to inspire and instil confidence in attendees to persevere with their ambitions to become successful leaders themselves.  

The Q&A will take place at The Stirling Suite in the Sheraton Grand, Edinburgh, from 7pm to 8.30pm on Wednesday the 27th March.

All profits from tickets sales will go to the Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home, a cause close to my own heart. I hope to see you there.



I had to laugh when I read that KFC could be facing another chicken shortage.

The news comes after their main supplier DHL quit, meaning it will again be delivered by Bidvest (now Best Food Logistics).

It was the inverse switch last year that was blamed for leaving chicken lovers hungry. The Sun reported that DHL was fed up of being blamed, and did not re-bid after Best Food said it could deliver a cage of chicken for £22 compared to £24.50.

Insiders fear that Bets Food’s plans and routes are unrealistic and disruption could be on the horizon. Last year KFC lost £1 million a day and was forced to close 700 of its 870 stores.

Let’s hope the transition runs smoother this year, otherwise feathers will do doubt fly.



The Scottish housing market is evidently feeling the effects of Brexit uncertainty.

The market is flat, with the number of properties for sale declining for nine months in a row as homeowners hold off in the hope of receiving political reassurances.

In Scotland, 47 per cent of chartered surveyors in the housing industry said that Brexit is holding the market back, with buyers and sellers sitting tight, likely resulting in further decline.

February saw buyer demand in Scotland remain flat for the third consecutive month. On Wednesday, Ms May will attempt to persuade MP’s for a third time to back her Brexit deal.

It’s starting to feel like political groundhog day, so it could be some time before the Scottish housing market is buoyant again.



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