Arran Banner letters – week 04

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February dechox


This is a call out to all chocoholics, cocoa bean lovers and confectionary enthusiasts! A suggestion, a plea, an idea that will exercise willpower and strength whilst helping those in Scotland who are living with heart and circulatory diseases.

Dechox! I’m asking the people of Scotland to forget the ordinary New Year detoxes, which attempt to banish all pleasure during the darkest months of the year, and instead just cut one beloved item from your pantry throughout the month of February – chocolate.

Each year, heart and circulatory diseases kills 1 in 4 people in the UK, 15,300 of which are from Scotland. Money raised by those brave enough to take on the challenge will go towards the British Heart Foundation’s (BHF) life saving research into heart and circulatory diseases. Last year, we saw over 18,000 chocolate lovers raise an astounding £1 million towards vital research, but with your help, we think we can raise even more in 2019.

We’re all familiar with the struggle of saying no to the left over Celebrations sitting on the coffee table. But by standing up to heart and circulatory disease and saying NO to chocolate this February, we’ll be one step closer to beating heartbreak forever! Sound like a battle you want to be a part of? Sign up here:


Adrian Adams

Dechox warrior at the BHF

Memorial day


This weekend, at more than 11,000 events across the country, hundreds of thousands of people will gather to commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day on Sunday January 27.

Holocaust Memorial Day is a time to remember all those affected by the Holocaust and Nazi Persecution, as well as genocides which have taken place more recently in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur. As well as remembering what happened, we also find ways to take positive action and make sure they can never happen again.

The Holocaust threatened the fabric of civilisation and has implications for us all. Without a basic understanding of this recent history, we are in danger of failing to learn where a lack of respect for difference and hostility to others can ultimately lead. With a rise in reported hate crime in the UK and ongoing international conflicts at risk of genocide, our world can feel fragile and vulnerable. We cannot be complacent.

Each of us has a responsibility to know what happened. Thankfully, more people than ever before are taking part in our annual commemorations to learn lessons from genocide and help create a better future.

For more information on how you can get involved with this year’s events, go to


Olivia Marks-Woldman 

Chief executive of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust