Talk of the Town: Royal approval not to be sniffed at

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GIVEN the trillions of fans across the solar system, it’s no surprise to learn the Queen enjoys tucking into a bit Harry Potter every now and then.

But it seems she’s far more than just a casual reader – it’s been revealed that a Labrador she bred has been named Gryffindor, the house the boy wizard belongs to at the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry.

And for those thinking the Queen’s pampered pooches are surely named without her knowledge by a royal servant, Liz actually christens all puppies bred at Sandringham herself.

Of course, she can afford to be liberal – it’s not as if she’s the one wandering the grounds late at night calling out their names.

Amazing how the sun shines on the righteous

MINISTERS and elders attending the Church of Scotland’s General Assembly were warned at the start of the week’s proceedings that if they skipped too many debates they would not get their expenses.

They were told they had to “clock in” using new voting handsets to ensure they were not skiving. Yesterday, however, the assembled churchmen managed to race through the day’s business and finish by 1pm.

Amazing coincidence given the blazing temperatures – but at least they could enjoy them with a clear conscience.

Drawing the line at Disney

DISNEY might shortly be releasing the much-anticipated animated film Brave, which is set in Scotland and will be premiered in Edinburgh, but its geography leaves a lot to be desired.

The film company published an advertising video promoting the Adventures by Disney Parks on YouTube – but blundered by showing the Scots/English border as starting near Edinburgh and finishing near Oban.

To sum up, Walt Disney doesn’t know much about Scotland.

Time to reveal all, Ian

TALK of the Town stalwart Ian Rankin has been at it again on the social networks, where news of fresh work can cause consternation amongst his followers.

The Capital crime writer is due to launch a new book later this year and has been teasing fans about it.

He tweeted a cryptic clue, which read: “Lad and Cope were inside time now – inside *all* of time. ‘Close your eyes and mind,’ Cope said. ‘Too much time is worse than too little.’”

Asked what the heck he was on about, he later added: “All will be revealed in the next week or ten days. . . #newbook.”