QUESTIONS have been asked of whether the farmer-friendly supermarket, Morrisons, might be turning veggie after it refused to sell freshly baked meat pies before 9.00am at one of its stores in the North of England.

Even though the meat pies were within reach of customers wanting their morning pasty fix, staff told them they could not be sold for another 15 minutes at 8.45am.

Now, The Raider is well aware that there may be some restriction on selling booze early in the morning – and rightly so – but a perfectly and freshly cooked mutton or beef pie?

“I wanted eight large sausage rolls and two steak bakes,” said a customer. “It was 8.45am and there were no pies at all displayed, but I could see bags and bags of them, all wrapped up on cages behind the counter ready to go.

“But when I asked for the pies, I was told that they couldn’t sell the pies until 9am. I could have had a fruit pie, but not a meat pie.”

However, the power of the internet saw Morrisons make a u-turn in the row over its 9am thresh-hold for pie sales and it now plans to sell them from 7.00am from said store, which is in Middlesbrough, right in the heart of a big beef-producing county, North Yorkshire. What next, an age restriction at the butcher’s counter?

Tipster trouble

OOR Dougie MacSkimming – in his own mind a ‘champion’ tipster, to the rest of us who lost a packet on his tips last weekend, a suitable asset to a WRI pancake tossing competition, ie he’s the one with the pan! – is in the poor-house after last week’s Grand National, at Aintree.

But like all good (and poor) punters, he’s determined to have a crack at recouping his losses at the Scottish National, at Ayr, today (Saturday).

He’s out to beat the bookies with the Irish horse, Fagan – and why wouldn’t you back it after its trainer, Gordon Elliot, won last Saturday’s event with Tiger Roll.

Others worth a bet include Vintage Clouds, from Sue and Harvey Smith; Ballyoptic from ‘The Twister’ (Twiston Davies), ridden by his son Sam; and the roof will come off the stand at Ayr if Kinross-based trainer, Lucinda Russell’s Big River empties the bookies satchels.

However, unless you already have a ticket, you’ll have to watch the race on the box as it’s all sold out – and the weather looks good at a sunny 18°C!

Red-faced ‘Ethel’

IT’S ONE you couldnae make up! While Catherine ‘Ethel’ McKechnie was looking after her grandchildren this week, at France Farm, Gartocharn, they had to be rescued by the emergency services after they locked themselves in a toilet, while she was in the shower.

Her twin grand-kids, Isla and Cameron wouldn’t open the door after putting the snib on and so poor Catherine had no option other than to phone for help before settling down to sing them nursery rhymes through the door. Eventually, help duly arrived with blue light flashing and burly polis.

“I was mortified and then the police shouldered the door down to be met with a ‘Hiya’ from Isla, who was smearing the walls with toothpaste, while Cameron was busy making a good job of covering the room in toilet paper and the contents of the ‘nappy’ bin!”

The Raider has been told that Mrs Kech only managed to get a towel on before the men in uniform arrived. However, it seems she makes a habit of being caught by men in uniform – an incident involving firemen in the Royal Highland Show’s stockwomans’ showers should also be taken into account!