Talk of the Town: Trams will be finished . . as time goes by

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If there is a lesson to be learned on how to build a tram project, then this is probably it.

The new Casablanca Tramway launched this month, on time and at £470 million, well under its £500m-plus budget.

Already three times as long as the troubled Edinburgh route – 20 miles versus just eight – it has 48 stops and stretches out to the suburbs.

The two-and-a-half-year construction period for the project is a record for an urban railway line.

And at times like these, Lesley Hinds, Gordon Mackenzie and Jenny Dawe must be wondering what went so wrong here . . .

Nic-ale Scherzinger proves a pint with her Deuchars

As far as Christmas tipples go, popstar Nicole Scherzinger no doubt usually opts for a delicate glass of Cristal.

But the ex-Pussycat Dolls lead singer shunned posh champagne in favour of a hearty pint of Deuchars during a visit to a North Yorkshire pub last week.

Scherzinger and X Factor winner James Arthur were in his local in Saltburn for a homeless charity campaign and are said to have downed the Edinburgh-brewed IPA in one.

“I’m sure the next time James and Nicole are visiting Scotland, we can arrange a tour of the brewery for them,” pledged Caledonian Brewery boss Stephen Crawley, “We’d like to see Nicole down the pint in one again, if she’s game!”

Bargains not worth wait

SOME people are so eager to get a bargain at the sales that they will start queuing in the middle of the night to make sure they’re at the front of the queue when the doors open. But the findings of a new survey suggest Scots are not the most dedicated queuers.

According to the survey, Scots on average are only prepared to wait one hour and two minutes in a queue, compared with Londoners whose patience stretches to one hour, 11 minutes. Only people in Wales (58 minutes) and East Anglia (one hour, one minute) were less willing to spend time queuing. So the fabled meanness of the Scots clearly doesn’t include too much hanging around.