Feisty Productions
Podcasts and programmes from Lesley Riddoch and the team at Feisty Productions

In the last @lesleyriddoch podcast of 2013, we try to dodge around and corral the issues of the season. These include the ‘big’ events for 2014, food and drink, honours, and how they fit in Scotland today.

We start by attempting to consign a series of expressions, tropes and memes to 2013.

Direct download: Between_Years.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 3:42pm UTC

Nigella Lawson of cooking fame has been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons. This week’s @lesleyriddoch podcast considers the fall out of the case and tries to make some sense of it all.

In a week when Lesley was being whisked around Helsinki by trams, we stop to ponder the latest European Commission survey on the public opinion on trains.

The Scotsman also revealed this week it was to move premises. This simple statement provoked an interesting ‘twitter’ storm with some surprising tangents. 

Direct download: Nigella_Trains_and_Papers.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 4:40pm UTC

 In this week’s @lesleyriddoch podcast, we discuss the Douglas Alexander intervention into the referendum debate. Lesley’s approach is to try to be ‘not snarky’ as she gets stuck into the arguments.

The topic of supermarkets and future food price gets a good chewing. Is it a real worry?  Some, like Dig In Bruntsfield and the Fife Diet folks might see this as an opportunity. And we also touch on the positive ideas out of recent Lighthouse exhibitions.

And then, there is Oslo. Lesley has been on another field trip, eventful as ever. And she comes back full of stories of bread, trams and transport. There’s also advance notice of the next Nordic Horizons meeting which promises to be very good on integrated public transport a la Ruter.

 

Direct download: Not_Snarky.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 12:32pm UTC

This week’s @lesleyriddoch podcast; ‘Scotland’s Future’ – the White Paper gets released, childcare gets discussed or not, and there’s a lot of television about.

There are mentions of Alan Little’s excellent ‘Our Friends in the North’, Scotland Tonight’s use of ‘heng oots’, the riveting spectacle of Eddi Reader on Question Time and that debate between   Nicola and Alistair . And Chris explains what it is like to meet the Ice Queen, Irene Macdougall of Dundee Rep who is in this year’s Christmas show, “The Big Friendly Giant”.

(And thanks to Chris Cook for the inspirational title of this week’s Pod ) 

Direct download: Silence_of_the_Prams.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 5:19pm UTC

This week’s @lesleyriddoch Podcast has Lesley fresh back from the WEA in Sheffield and the Radical Independence Campaign event in Glasgow on November 23. Two very different experiences as she describes them.

Looking forward, this week will see the long anticipated White Paper which will answer questions. Lesley will be spending some time this week talking about this document; rumoured to be 700+ pages. We discuss if it’s all the possible answers or none – or somewhere in between. We also briefly talk about the role of negotiations in key policy areas. Especially, in the light of the recent Iranian Nuclear agreements; would it be possible to avoid a ‘McWeimar Republic’?

And, it wouldn’t be a @lesleyriddoch Podcast without gratuitous mentions of things Nordic, music of the 70/80s and Volvos. They are all there.

Direct download: Radical_White_Papers.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 1:10pm UTC

This week’s @lesleyriddoch podcast develops some of the themes about health visitors and the continuing debate about ‘early years’.

And after a dander around Assynt and Ullapool; the importance of community cinema, head torches, Dundee rep becomes clear. The Blossom audience in Lochinver is filled with the folk from the early evening screening of ‘Sunshine on Leith’ and a helpful member of the audience offers to illuminate the stage with a head torch. Saturday night in the Ceilidh Place hosts a fantastic production of ‘Promises, Promises’ with Ann Louise Ross.

And finally, after a Mike Vickers suggestion and a Borgen episode, could there be the need for a new party; a ‘Community Action’ party?

Direct download: Health_Visitors_and_Community_Treats.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 5:36pm UTC

In a week where elections to NHS Health Boards are being wound up as ‘a good idea’, we discuss whether there is too much democracy. Is the NHS too difficult to engage with, anyway?

If there is too much democracy, is the referendum too serious? Lesley spots a new feature from her last speaking engagement; there might be hope.

And finally, Borgen returns. So why are we so in love with long running complex TV series? It’s all to do with Saturday night , apparently.

Direct download: Too_Much_Democracy.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 10:10am UTC

This week’s @lesleyriddoch Podcast is full of lectures. From Kirkintilloch; where Lesley reflected on the legacy of Tom Johnston and the community spirit to Govan and the latest news about shipbuilding. In common with a lot of bloggers, like Derek Bateman, Lesley has a different view of the proceedings, unlike the MSM.

If you didn’t make it along to the excellent Nordic Horizons event; ‘Nordic Cooperation with Mary Hilson and Johan Strang, Lesley gives you the highlights about how the Nordic nations are practically working together. (Still worth listening to a recording of the event…it’s lively and thought provoking.)

And …finally, there’s news of another insight into Copenhagen, coming in December at the next Nordic Horizons meeting.

Direct download: Tom_Johnston_Shipbuilding_Cooperat.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC

Lesley arrives hotfoot from a literary Dundee and a wind blasted London. In Dundee, she meets the family that reads together and has an AL Kennedy moment.

In London, she had been taking part in a debate at the Institute for Government. Her verdict; a different type of question and questioner.  

And, what about energy? Is there anything new to say? Well, you can always rely on Dundee to delight. And so it does, with tales of community energy.

Direct download: London_Dundee_Energy.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 7:55pm UTC

Fresh from an appearance on ‘Any Question’ on BBC Radio 4 from Rothbury, Lesley still has points and observations to make about her fellow panellists. Energy came up as a topic and Lesley has more to say on the subject in response to David Willetts’ assertions. Lesley also reveals what local people said to her following the recording and the audience’s surprising reaction to the Scottish independence debate.

She also had occasion to use a machine in London which would not take Scottish notes. The resulting twitterstrom threw up some interesting points.

Lesley also managed to have an eventful time at the SNP Conference in Perth and has a tale to tell.

And, on the road with ‘Blossom’, there was a very interesting meeting at the Centre for Human Ecology which prompted lots of questions. Some of which we discuss.

Direct download: Any_Questions_Scottish_Notes.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 11:22am UTC

This week Lesley talks about giving the keynote at the Moray College graduation ceremony and gets a good view of the local issues which are niggling folks in Moray. It’s libraries mainly. And how does that link back to being a guest speaker at the Yes group in Moray? And is ‘Vaping’ real smoking or not?

Finally, guess what Lesley thinks about ‘Sunshine On Leith’. This week’s podcast contains all the answers.

Direct download: Moray_and_Guest_Yes.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 4:04pm UTC

Scotland Women's Football team put 7 past Bosnia but it's Tam Cowan's comments that make the news. Equally, Lesley visits  the Wigtown Book Festival and finds as ever; feisty conversations, women who lend watches and a whole different spin on the independence debate. And then there was the Green Party Conference in Inverness, Lesley reports back from the front line.

Direct download: Womens_Football_Books_Radicals.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 1:56pm UTC

Back after an extended lay off, the Lesley Riddoch Podcast is back.  Lesley launched a book, and has been busy with being a writer. This includes reading reviews.

With a year to go before the big vote; Lesley casts her eye over the debate so far and wonders aloud; ‘is this the best we can do?’

Finally, as every tourist does, we speculate about how an economy could be turned around.

Direct download: Book_launches_living_Independently.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 10:31am UTC

As we come up to the Scottish Parliament's summer recess, a lot has happened in the last week or so. Topics include the passing of Allan Macrae and Tommy Riley, Govanhill Big Noise, Alex Salmond and Muirfield, one year of ‘Better Together’ and the Saltire Housing Design  Award.

Direct download: The_End_of_Term.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 7:44pm UTC

It seems everyone spotted @lesleyriddoch on last week’s ‘Question Time’. It was a lively programme for a number of reasons as Lesley will explain. Equally, a 40 minute journey to Eigg turns into an adventure and an opportunity for new discoveries.

Direct download: Question_Time_Outed_and_Eigg.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 5:02pm UTC

Derry/Londonderry is the UK’s City of Culture this year, Lesley paid a visit and reports back. The Kirkcaldy Galleries have hosted a series of events as they re-open after renovation; we talk about what happens when celebrity Fifers, Ian Rankin and Jack Vettriano  meet. And finally, in this week’s @lesleyriddoch podcast, the US and UK have been snooping and Edward Snowden wants you to know.

Direct download: Derry_Kirkcaldy_and_Snowden.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 7:25am UTC

Lord George Robertson warns of 'Balkanisation' in the independence debate. Lesley was a panellist in a very energetic meeting at Adam Smith College  and understands some of the background to the recent Edinburgh University survey into young people's attitudes to the independence debate.  The High Streets across Scotland are failing, whilst radical cycling plans for Edinburgh are being proposed ( and opposed ). What is the solution?

We cover a lot of ground in this week’s podcast.

Direct download: Balkans_the_Young__High_Streets.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 2:02pm UTC

This week, it's the turn of wind energy and cycling to feature in the @lesleyriddoch podcast. Concepts like 'wind crofters' and 'strict liability' will be explored in the light of the 'Land Reform Review Group' interim report and Emma Way and the #bloodycyclist affair.

Direct download: Wind_crofting_and_strictly_cycles.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 11:57am UTC

This week’s @lesleyriddoch podcast starts with Lesley at Radio 4’s ‘Leader Conference’, takes in Nigel Farage and 70s direct action, Norman Tebbit and gay marriage, Gary Tank Commander and skiffs.

Direct download: Leader_Conference_and_Hospitality.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 5:48pm UTC

UKIP’s recent election results stirred things up down in England. Lesley was keen to point out the differences between UKIP and the SNP after parallels had been drawn in her Scotsman column.

After an event “Who Runs Culture in Scotland?” in the Tron with a packed panel, including Alasdair Gray, the answer is a bit clearer.

The ‘Poverty in South Lanarkshire’ conference and some biological explanations from the Chief Medical Officer prompt some out loud thinking.

The long overdue recognition of the Arctic Convoy  heroes  is something we also touch upon respectfully  in this week’s @lesleyriddoch podcast.

Direct download: UKIP_Culture_Poverty_Arctic_Heroe.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 6:54pm UTC

There’s a lot on the menu this week. A recent YouGov Poll suggests the Scottish public is unconvinced by Alex Salmond’s arguments for independence – are the wheels coming off ?

Lesley was at the ‘Future is Local’ event at the Scottish Parliament and comes back with a few insights , including  Angus Macmillan of Storas Uibhist.

And finally, Barack Obama was a top performer at the annual White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner. Leadership and comedy – is this possible ?

Direct download: Wheels_Off_Communities_Day_and_Whit.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 11:15am UTC

Lesley went to Belfast and watched Margaret Thatcher's funeral from there. News of the Boston Marathon bombing came through during her visit and these topics feature in this week's Lesley Riddoch podcast.

Direct download: Mostly_Belfast.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 11:00am UTC

This week's @lesleyriddoch Podcast was recorded on April 1st, in the afternoon. The combination of the date and Easter meant amusement and questions about both. Similarly, the appointment of Paolo di Canio prompted questions. Finally, it's not the Bedroom Taxed; they are the 'Bedroom Blockers'. The implications of this new benefit cuts are starting to emerge.

Direct download: April_Fool_Eggs_Paolo_and_Bedroom_Blockers.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 3:38pm UTC

Alex Salmond addresses the SNP on the subject of child care, Ed Davey talks through the UK's commitments and Lesley goes to the movies. Her reactions, as ever, are livley and insightful.


Lesley chaired sessions at the 2013 COSLA  Conference in St Andrews. She reports back from a conference where the architect of the ‘Bedroom Tax’, Lord Freud delivered a presentation and where Nicola Sturgeon ‘debated’ with Alistair Darling; in the first clash of the political heavyweights. She gives you some of the colour and atmosphere of these particular sessions. You may well get annoyed as Lesley by some of the attitudes. Finally, Lesley and Andy Wightman were invited to take part in a ‘Comrie Conversation’; a community that came together to talk about ‘independence’ at the grassroots.


We tried this week to round up the highlights from a Nordic Horizon event 'Beyond NATO' ( fascinating ), the departure of Cardinal O'Brien ( thought provoking ) and the all the cross border issues thrown up with the current state of the independence debate ( perplexing ). There is a lot to pack into this week's @lesleyriddoch podcast.

Direct download: Nordic_Defence_Cardinal_Sin_and_the_Alien_Nation_.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 2:03pm UTC

This week’s podcast is full of discussions about inappropriate behaviour, unanswered questions and AAA ratings or should we concentrate on the Commonwealth? Behaviour in the Roman Catholic Church and theLib Dems has been put under the microscope and there seem to be a number of questions hanging in the air…not all posed nor answered. But this @lesleyriddoch podcast will have a go! 

Direct download: Behaviour_Questions_and_the_the_Commonwealth.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 5:35pm UTC

Between the constitutional debates being largely male,  graduates being ‘too posh to stack’ and councils being cheap; this week’s Lesley Riddoch podcast is on the look out for heroes. We think we may have found them. Step forward, Cait Reilly, Stephen Jardine and Mike Small.

Direct download: Gender_Poundland_Iceland.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 1:15pm UTC

In this week's podcast, we try to unpick all the challenges which surround EVs, that's electric cars to you and me. We also mention the Pope in passing. In the continuing long running independence debate, there have been developments which centre around what happens after the referendum. Finally, last weekend, Lesley chaired a discussion at Falkland with the folks from the Centre for Stewardship and there were unlikely revelations.

Direct download: Electric_Cars_Devo_Falklands_Art.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 1:05pm UTC

Sidse Babett Knudsen, Mike Dailly, Pamela Duncan, David Laws and Chris Huhne are all in the 'names to be used this week' folder. With the final episodes of the second series of Borgen being shown at the Filmhouse Edinburgh, it was time to sign off this remarkable political drama, for now. And with that, Lesley dives straight into unpicking the impending 'Bedroom Tax' and what does the latest Lib Dem resignation mean?

Direct download: More_Borgen_Bedroom_Tax_and_Resignations.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 7:37pm UTC

After a blustery weekend in Skye and a Burns Supper to boot, this week's podcast reflects on the latest UK moves on Trident and Burns and those suppers. It is also impossible not to mention the Celtic Connections concert " All will be well - A celebration of Michael Marra". As you will hear, if you listen closely, Lesley was affected by the whole experience.

Direct download: Trident_Burns_Marra.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 6:26pm UTC

Between meetings that never took place in the snow and a night talking Dundee regeneration, there is a lot going on in the Lesley Riddoch podcast this week. Add another referendum and it's suddenly - it's action packed.

Direct download: Snow_Dundee_EU_In_Out.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 2:52pm UTC

A bit late this week and a bit shorter than usual. Lesley is just back from Reykjavik and didn't find exactly what she had expected.

But a concert hall and a film caught her eye.

Direct download: Just_Iceland.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 11:48am UTC

Well actually, it is Borgen, teenage mothers and a brief discussion of 'economics' at the local level. After a Christmas and Hogmanay break, Lesley is back bright eyed and bushy tailed, ready to take on all comers.

Direct download: Borgen_and_Teenage_Mothers.mp3
Category:The Lesley Riddoch Podcast -- posted at: 4:20pm UTC