Comment: McGowan generosity belies public perception

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They rank alongside bankers, politicians, estate agents and, well, journalists, when it comes to professions with public image problems.

When we imagine Premiership footballers we tend to think of overpaid prima donnas with more interest in drinking in nightclubs than helping out in the community.

But that cliche can be very misleading as the players of Loanhead Parish Church Football Club can confirm.

Former Hearts star Ryan McGowan starred at the World Cup finals in Brazil and has scored goals in two cup finals, but certainly he has not lost touch with “the real world”.

The 25-year-old Australian is still happy to enjoy a kick-about with members of the East of Scotland Church League side – and even laughs about being “nutmegged” when one of them beat him by poking the ball between his legs.

Not only that, but Ryan has been generous enough to help provide them with new kits. It is another reminder, were it needed, that you should never judge a book by its cover.

Bank on it

IT is fantastic to see new plans to bring the former RBS building in St Andrew Square back to life.

Perhaps not the hotel originally envisaged by Vladimir Romanov, but restoring the original banking hall should certainly make for one of Edinburgh’s most impressive restaurants. While we wait to see the details of the plans, finding a use for a redundant building – 
especially such a high-profile one – has to be good news.

It is part of a much larger scheme to revamp the area and represents yet another vote of confidence in the East End.

If all comes to fruition, the city should cash in on an impressive link between the Square and the planned St James Quarter revamp.