Following the decision of the Competition Commission announced last week about BAA’s ownership of airports in the UK, the company have been told to offload London Stansted and either Glasgow or Edinburgh airports. But we are perhaps a little way from that becoming a reality.

BAA Chief Executive Colin Matthews said:
“We are dismayed that the Competition Commission’s final decision still requires BAA to sell Stansted and either Glasgow or Edinburgh airport. The Competition Commission has not recognised that the world and BAA have changed. This decision would damage our company which is investing strongly in UK jobs and growth. We have a responsibility to protect our shareholders’ investment and we will now consider a judicial review of the Competition Commission’s decision.

The world has changed since the Competition Commission’s March 2009 decision:
A new Government has changed aviation policy to rule out any new runway capacity in the South East and BAA has sold Gatwick Airport. Both are significant changes to the airport market. Further, the airports in question face increased competition from non-BAA airports, particularly those in Europe, for the business of low cost carriers who now take a pan-European view of the market. It is also clearer now than it has ever been that Heathrow and Stansted serve different markets.

BAA has changed since the Competition Commission’s March 2009 decision:
BAA’s owners have invested £5 billion in UK airports since acquiring the company in 2006 (including over £300 million at Stansted), and are currently investing a further £1 billion a year. BAA’s operational performance has improved: security queues are shorter; baggage delivery is more reliable; and flight punctuality has hit record levels. Passenger surveys show that customers recognise the improvements.”

Bargain hunters in Edinburgh have a new way of sharing their thrifty finds, following the launch of our location-based social networking site on Foursquare – a first for a UK charity.

Smart-phone users in Edinburgh will be the first to test-drive the network which allows visitors to our shops across the capital to ‘check in’ their location while checking out the merchandise and earn special discounts, and win prizes.

Visitors will have exclusive access via Foursquare to make lists of their favourite places, write reviews, take photographs of items and share them with friends. In return we are  offering free rewards and discount offers to shop visitors, as well as the chance to collect eight limited edition badges by renowned designer Stina Jones.

The proposal by the UK government to sell off all army bases in Edinburgh and relocate the troops in Kirknewton has received comment from The East Kilbride News which reports that an MSP has suggested that the bases could be used for housing. Now what we wonder is – which MSP? Given that there are already many houses at Craigiehall for instance, it must have taken a lot of thought….. The Southern Reporter believes that a new army base at Kirknewton would mean training facilities would be required in the Borders.

The case for moving the Film Festival back to its original slot in August is mooted by Tim Cornwell in The Scotsman. Yes, we probably agree that it has not been a complete success moving it forward in the diary. The Reporter did not manage to see one film this year, although thankfully we had some reviewers out there in the dark!

If you are still wondering why there were (or still are) huge canvas portraits hung on the McEwan Hall then this video may give you a clue