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For the second year running, Dundee was treated to a spectacular display of fire works which lit up the Saturday night sky in a cascade of shimmering colours for more than 20 minutes.
A celebration – and the centrepiece – of Dundee’s first city festival, it was jointly managed by Dundee District Council, Tayside Region and the Scottish Development Agency.
Though the turn-out was less that the estimated 200,000 who attended last year’s centenary celebration for the Tay Bridge, many did make the effort and brave the biting wind to line the Tay, others heading for one of the city’s favourite vantage points, the Law.
The £30,000, display was launched from three pontoons moored in the river between Dundee Leisure Centre and the railway bridge and despite the less-than-perfect weather conditions which buffeted the craft, the firework presentation was started by the city’s Lord Provost Tom Mitchell just 10 minutes behind schedule.
The opening sequence featuring traditional Japanese fireworks which hung in the area for several minutes before dispersing in a blaze of colours was particularly well received by the young families lining Riverside Drive, who gasped their appreciation at every new burst of light.
The oriental display was specially arranged to herald the start of the six-week long “Dundee Welcomes Japan” festival of autumn events.
There followed a change of pace – the more usual European fireworks blazing a path across the night sky, building up to a breath-taking finale, with the very rain cloud which had threatened to dampen the enthusiasm of spectators, ironically providing the perfect backdrop to the spectacle.
Orchestrated by Shell Shock Fireworks, the company responsible for last year’s success, the display was exactly timed to a Radio Tay broadcast of music by French rock musician Jean Michel Jarre, which rang out from loudspeakers set up along Riverside Drive.
Well, perhaps exactly isn’t quit the word for there was one minor hitch.
As the last strains of music died away and everyone turned to leave, the skies were unexpectedly lit up by yet more pyrotechnic wizardry. But, working on the pre-text you can’t get too much of a good thing, no one way complaining!
After hearing the draw for the Skol Cup semi-finals which paired his side with Aberdeen, Dundee United manager Jim McLean commented “It is a good draw for us and I am particularly pleased that our supporters won’t have any travelling to do”.
“Dens is also a happy hunting ground for us and we will certainly not be lacking confidence going there again”.
Aberdeen boss Alex Smith is expecting another epic battle between United and Aberdeen.
“They’re on a high just now, but remember, the game is still three weeks away and there’s a lot that can happen between now and then.”
“We played them last Saturday and they didn’t beat us. It should be a game between two evenly matched sides and it could go either way”.
“It’s a game I wouldn’t want to miss if I was a spectator. They’re going to get a result on the night and both teams are going to be very positive in their attitude to the game”.
“ We’re quite happy with the draw”.
Meanwhile, holders Rangers will face Hearts at Hampden Park, attempting to reach their seventh Skol Cup final in eight years.
Hearts, who have won the competition four times in the past, will be attempting to reach their first final since 1962 when they won the old League Cup with a 1-0 win over Kilmarnock at Hampden.
The national stadium has not been a happy hunting ground for the Edinburgh side in recent seasons, though. In April they went down 2-1 to Celtic at the semi-final stage of the Scottish Cup and also failed at the same hurdle against St. Mirren the previous year.
This time they face Rangers – who are seeking a hat-trick of trophies – in irresistible form.
Draw for the semi-finals of the Skol Cup:
Aberdeen v Dundee United (At Den’s Park, Dundee on Tuesday, September 20).
Rangers v Hearts (Hampden Park, Wednesday, September 21).
Camperdown Country Park, Dundee
A day out for all the family.
Special Events – Local Authority Flower Displays
The first show to incorporate the Dundee Horticultural Society Show and the Allotment Federation Show with displays of flowers, fruit, vegetables, floral art, beekeeping, win-making and scholars’ classes. Special guest George Barron on Saturday. Trade stands for all your gardening needs.
Friday, September 2……….1 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Saturday, September 3……...10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Sunday, September 4……… 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Friday, September 2………. £2; after 6 p.m. £1.50.
Saturday, September 3 and Sunday, September 4…………. £1.50 after 6 p.m. £1.
Show schedules are available from Dundee Tourist Office, City Square; Central Library, Wellgate Centre; Lynch. Dick McTaggart and Douglas Sports Centres or contact the Parks Department on Dundee 23141, extension 4021.
No through road for ordinary traffic during the duration of the show. Golfers to enter the park by the West Lodge entrance.
Saturday – 9-2
If you’re smart, you’ll get there early.
Free admission until 10
Bally’s Nightlife, The Links, Queens Drive, Arbroath, Tel: 72338.
Lochee Burns Club held a special Burns Service at St Columba’s Church, Cobden Street, Dundee, yesterday.
The minister of St Columba’s, Mr John MacKay Nimmo, who conducted the service, is chaplain to Lochee Burns Club and a great admirer of the Ayrshire poet.
During the service members of Lochee Burns Club read a lesson and, as well as the traditional hymns, members sang solos and one club member gave a recitation.
The vocalists were accompanied by Bruce Wallace on the accordion.
Yugoslavian Miodrag Krivokapic will join the Tannadice squad today. The work permit problems he has been experiencing since signing for United seem to have been sorted out and he will at last be able to meet his new team-mate.
The Yugoslav would, of course, be eligible for tomorrow’s derby match at Dens.
Painting and Show
McManus Galleries, Albert Square Dundee
Seagate Gallery, 36-40, Seagate, Dundee
The Japanese Shop
Fans, fish, flowers, kites, kimonos, babukis.
Only part of our exciting range of Japanese goods.
Sport Aid ’88, the world-wide run in aid of charity, will go ahead in Dundee’s Camperdown Park at 4 p.m. this Sunday, although Sport Aid’s own programme of runs does not include the Dundee event.
What started out as a fun charity event with a serious purpose became bogged down in uncertainty as Dundee District Council, who are providing the venue at Camperdown Park, first of all denied yesterday that it was running the event – then claimed that it was.
Dundee District Council Leisure and Recreation Department is providing the stewarding of the event and will pass on the names and addresses of anyone who has not registered with the London headquarters of the charity. However, it has nothing to do with the competitors.
Last night a spokeswoman for Dundee District Council said, “The District Council are to organise the event, and will be supplying car parking facilities, refreshment and anyone who wishes to take part can do so. We can cater for up to 1000 people, although we are expecting between 500 and 600”.
The spokeswomen added that unfortunately no official race numbers would be available, but that didn’t prevent people taking part.
The district council claims that the communication problem is the fault of Sport Aid for not including Dundee of the list of cities, villages and towns holding runs.
To set matters straight for all those wanting to participate, there will be a race starting at Camperdown Park at 4 p.m. on Sunday. If anyone still wishes to register, special arrangements have been made to overcome any delays caused by the postal strike – intending runners can register at any branch of TSB, or at the event itself.
It is estimated that over 20 million people will take part in the world-wide event.
Plans for two supermarkets in Dundee – one in Monifieth and one on Kingsway have been submitted to the district council.
Wm. Low is hoping to build a store and create a large car park in the centre of Monifieth while a Berkshire company has applied for permission to build a large supermarket on the site of the former Fairmuir School directly opposite the Ice Rink.
The present Wm. Low supermarket in Monifieth High Street shopping centre would close and business would be transferred across the road to a store three times as big as the present one.
The company is seeking outline consent for a 25,000 square feet supermarket with 150 parking spaces on the site of the former James F. Low foundry.
The area is being flattened and cleared of derelict buildings, creating a large gap site fronting High Street between a sheltered housing development and the existing shopping centre.
The proposed supermarket would be set back on the site, with the parking spaces adjacent to the High Street and access for customers would be from the main street.
There is a proposed access for delivery lorries and staff vehicles on Reform Street to reach the rear of the supermarket where there is a small parking area.
It was unclear yesterday whether Wm. Low’s had purchased the site, or whether any deal was dependent on planning permission.
The vast site was owned by Mr Tom Docherty, of Interbild, but he was not prepared to say yesterday whether he had sold the land to Wm. Low. “You had better speak to Wm. Low about that” he said.
No one from the Dundee based supermarket chain was available for comment yesterday.
If the development proceeds, the new carpark will solve the problem of the inadequate parking facilities at the present shopping centre which has been the source of recent complaints from shoppers and shopkeepers alike.
The huge site of the former foundry is zoned for housing at the High Street end and for light industrial use at the bottom section.
The company behind the Fairmuir site is Cussins Commercial Developments of Maidenhead.
It is seeking outline consent for a 40,000 square foot food store, with 262 car parking spaces. If permission is granted the supermarket would be opened by Christmas next year.
Mr J.K. Livingston, a director of the development company, denied he had a client for the premises, but it seems almost certain that a store of the size planned would be operated by one of the big name supermarket chains.
“It is not designated to any particular party at this moment in time” said Mr Livingston.
“Whenever a store of this size comes on the market, there is a great deal of interest from operators”.
But the plans were not welcomed by Downfield resident Mrs Gwen Kissock, of Charlotte Place, who said the volume of traffic generated by the supermarket would aggravate an existing problem.
“At weekends there are cars parked all along both sides of Charlotte Street when people are at the university playing fields right opposite the site of the old school”.
“They park on the pavements and it’s a nightmare for anybody old or blind to try to negotiate their way along the street”.
Mrs Kissock said that when local residents heard last year the site had been taken over by Servite Housing and permission was granted for houses, they were very pleased.
“The site has lain vacant for a long time and people went in and exercised their dogs,” she said “them it was all padlocked but kids used to break-in to play football there.
“It has been overgrown for months, Up until a couple of weeks ago the grass was waist high, but workmen came in with grass cutters and tidied it all up.
One hundred people were turned away from Big Blue 72’s concert last night in Dundee.
The venue then was the Bar Chevrolet and this weekend the group move next door for their second appearance at Fat Sams, and the first with their present line up.
Big Blue have been together in various forms since last year. As various people have noted, Big Blue throw everything from country and western to “Peter Gunn” at their audiences.
Thankfully, variety does not drown out quality. Songs like “Days Like These” and “Big Gun” are refreshingly high standard pop.
The group have been invited to perform on October 4, during Edinburgh University’s freshers’ week, and hopes are high that record company talent scouts will be there, as well as in Dundee this Sunday.