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Voting age to lower from next year

New Edinburgh to Poland flights

VisitScotland competition

Summer activities in Inverleith

Power of Food Festival to celebrate the summer solstice this weekend

The voting age for Scottish Parliament and local government elections will be lowered from spring 2016.

The Scottish Elections (Reduction of Voting Age) Bill, passed today, will allow 16 and 17 year olds to vote at next year’s Scottish Parliament elections.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney said: “This Bill provides a detailed, workable and practical framework to allow 16 and 17 year olds to register for and vote in Scottish elections. I welcome the broad cross-party support there has been for our proposals that will give young people a permanent voice on matters that affect them.

“Since we first proposed lowering the voting age, I have been extremely impressed by the thoughtful and passionate contributions that young people have made to the debate – Scotland’s young people have made a persuasive case and should be extremely proud of that.”

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Czech Airlines, the national carrier of the Czech Republic, will fly two new direct routes to Poland from next month, as well as an additional link to Prague.

From 14 July, the airline will fly directly between Edinburgh and Lodz and Rzeszow and will also operate an indirect service between Edinburgh and Prague via Lodz.

Using an Airbus A319 which will be based in Prague, the new services will commence in mid-July and fly until 24 October. The aircraft will fly Tuesdays and Saturdays between Prague and Edinburgh via Lodz, where there is a 30 minute stopover, it will then fly from Edinburgh to Rzeszow before returning to Edinburgh, Lodz then Prague.

These new flights will offer the strong local Polish community in Edinburgh and indeed tourists from all three countries more choice of how they can travel to and from Edinburgh Airport and a better selection of services.

Both Lodz and Rzeszow have enjoyed economic prosperity over the last few years and are steeped in fascinating history. Their vibrant city centres make the ideal destination for a weekend getaway.

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As Scotland looks to its Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design in 2016, VisitScotland, Scotland’s national tourism organisation, is putting young design talent at the heart of plans and is inviting young creatives all over Scotland to design the official logo used to promote the year.

The designer whose logo is selected will win up to £3,000 towards materials, tools or activity to support their own professional development in the design sector.

From textiles to technology, architecture to fashion and design, the year-long programme of events, festivals, business conferences and exhibitions aimed at attracting participation and engagement from visitors and locals, will shine the spotlight on Scotland’s greatest assets and icons, as well as some of our unique hidden gems.

The winning design will become the official logo for the forthcoming themed year and will be used across multiple channels by VisitScotland and partner organisations across national and international promotional activity throughout 2015 and 2016.

The competition is a great opportunity for a young creative to add a design to their portfolio that has the potential to be seen by millions of people and become highly recognisable during the year.  The winner will also be able to see their logo design carried across a programme of major and special events due to take place throughout 2016.

Entries to the competition must be from individuals aged between 16 and 25 years of age, who are resident in Scotland.

Visit http://www.eventscotland.org/funding/year-of-innovation-architecture-and-design-2016/logo-competition/ to download an Entry Form, Design Brief and full Terms and Conditions. Designs should be submitted via email to communications@eventscotland.org.

The closing date for entries is Sunday 12 July 2015 (at midnight).   The winning design will be announced thereafter.

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Registration takes place on Monday 22 June for the events listed in the programme below.

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Loads of events around the city this weekend to celebrate the summer solstice!

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