In Govanhill

When Amir Butt goes to bed at night in the Govanhill flat he shares with his wife and five young children he finds, too often, that he cannot sleep for the smell of urine and excrement rising up from the close. The 45 year old taxi driver moved to this part of south-east Glasgow from… Read more »

Duglas T Stewart

ON the evening before we were due to meet and talk about the 30th anniversary of his group BMX Bandits, Duglas T Stewart got in touch with a warning: over the last couple of years he has been wrestling with serious mental health issues which manifest themselves, now and again, in self-harming behaviour. “Last night,”… Read more »

William McIlvanney

GOING by the books he has written over 45 years, you would expect to see William McIlvanney in particular places and situations. Football grounds and dog tracks. High flats and low company. Certain pubs in which anecdote and incident come as chasers with each drawn pint. So persistently has he hymned the nobility, authenticity, laughter… Read more »

The Bathers

A golden Edinburgh evening after a day of silver haar. In a tiny rehearsal room near the Botanic Gardens, a band is performing. The singer plays a semi-acoustic, eyes squeezed shut, singing songs of French girls and twilight gardens, fireflies and summer rain. At the back of the room, sitting on a leather sofa, is… Read more »

Philip Pullman

PHILIP Pullman has agreed to meet on the condition that I don’t ask him questions he’s been asked a million times before. That’s fine by me; Oxford is seven hours from Glasgow by train, a long way to go to replicate someone else’s interview, but it’s a revealing caveat all the same. Pullman, who has… Read more »