Research by the University of St Andrews could help in disease diagnosis

New research led by the University of St Andrews could hold the key to the diagnosis of the early stages of various diseases and lead to new drug discoveries.

The research, published in Nature Communications, has developed an innovative new way to hold samples using sound whilst they are gently imaged using light. The ability to hold and image objects will have a profound impact across biomedical sciences, especially those focused on disease identification, neuroscience and developmental biology.

 

Professor Kishan Dholakia from the University’s School of Physics and Astronomy said: ” This is a new way to perform drug-based studies for cardiovascular disease and developmental biology.  We anticipate this approach can also be used for high throughput drug discovery, an important topic for future healthcare.”

 

Click to read the full story.

 

 

 

Project to revitalise River Leven communities secures investment

A project to revitalise the River Leven in Fife has secured more than £300,00 in funding.

 

One of the first initiatives of The Leven Catchment Project has been awarded £25,000 from Sustans Scotland’s Community Links scheme and £65,000 from the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency’s (SEPA) Water Environment Fund.

 

The funding from Sustrans and SEPA will finance feasibility and scoping work, which started last month, for the ‘Connectivity Project’ – one of a series of projects designed to help deliver a wider vision for the region which focuses on a 5km stretch of the River Leven at Levenmouth.

 

Plans include developing a series of paths to connect the isolated communities along the river and unlocking opportunities on vacant and derelict land in the area.

 

“The River Leven catchment in Mid-Fife was historically home to several hundred mills and factories, with a proud population of miners and workers in manufacturing industries,” explained SEPA water specialist Pauline Silverman.

 

“There are now significant challenges in the area and the river has become a barrier between communities, disconnecting people and towns from each other.  The purpose of the Leven Catchment Project is to achieve environmental improvements to spark new ways of working with key partners and communities to create social and economic opportunities.”

 

Key partners in the project with SEPA are Fife Council, the Forth Rivers Trust, Scottish Natural Heritage, Sustrans, Fife College and Scottish Water.

 

Visit the SEPA website for more information about the project.

Fife packaging firm plans £1.1m investments

Fife-based packing group, Pitreavie, has revealed ambitious plans to invest £1.1 million this year, including on a new office complex and expanded warehouse at the company’s Glenrothes head office.

 

Founded in 2010 by two friends, Pitreavie has rapidly grown from a Fife-based two-man operation into a national supplier with over 100 employees and an annual turnover of more than £13 million.

 

Last month it acquired Aberdeen-based Leiper Associated Packing, taking the number of businesses it owns in the city to three, and in 2018, it acquired a company in Worcester, its first acquisition south of the border, opening up new markets across the Midlands and beyond.

 

Its plans for Fife include the development of a packaging Centre of Excellence where customers can learn about new products and how best to package and transport their goods.  This new development is expected to be open in September.

 

Gordon Delaney, Group Commercial Director said: “Last year, we announced a large investment of £650,000 and spoke of our future plans.  These plans are now coming to fruition and we are thrilled our growth strategy is ahead of schedule allowing us to use expert knowledge in more locations, helping more customers.”

 

Visit the company’s website for the full story.

Fife Fintech Academy to expand after successful pilot

The pilot of a new initiative to address potential skills gaps in Scotland’s fintech community has been hailed a success.

A trial course, run jointly by Dunfermline payment specialist Renovite Technologies and Fife College, took place last month.

 

Around 15 participants with varying levels of experience, from trainees through to seasoned software developers, took part in the course designed to provide a solid foundation in retail card payments which could then be applied diectly to a work environment.

 

The course was the first to be run since Scotland’s first Fintech Academy was launched in Fife last September.  The Academy,  which is supported by a consortium of fintech companies, including Renovite and Dunfermline-base software firm Ingenico, Fife Council, Fife College and FinTech Scotland, aims to provide a steady flow of highly qualified applications for specialist fintech roles in the region to avoid a skills gap developing.

 

Jim Tomaney, Chief Operating Officer at Renovite Technologies said:

 

“It’s fantastic to see the fintech and education community coming together to promote STEM skills development and pre-empt the potential for a skills gap emerging.  I hope organisations and individuals with an interest in working in the sector continue to support and take part in the initiative and help build on its success.”

 

Following the success of the pilot course, a programme of further courses will now be rolled out – contact Fife College for more information.

Breathing new life into the Queensway Technology and Business Park

Fife Council Service Manager George Sneddon and Cllr Altany Craik with Little Thistle staff Tracey Kinds, Keven Fleming and Gregor Fleming,

Seven new business units are breathing life into the Queensway Technology and Business Park in Glenrothes.  The units, which were built by Fife Council and the Fife Task Force, are located next to the main trunk road network and Glenrothes town centre.

 

The units range in size from 98sqm to 130sqm, providing a total of 784 sqm of new business space to help meet the demand within the local market for modern, fit-for-purpose business accommodation in this key location.

 

The completion of the units marks a significant milestone in Fife Council’s long term commitment to the regeneration of Queensway.  The new units are the first new business development in the area for a number of years and demonstrate that regeneration is fully underway, acting as a catalyst for future investment and development.

 

Cllr Altany Craik, Convener of Fife Council’s Economy, Tourism, Strategic Planning and Transportation Committee said: “These units, which are already fully occupied, offer great opportunities for smaller businesses to locate in modern, purpose-built premises.  Units like these are so important to the local economy and local jobs.

 

“There is a lot happening at Queensway, and Fife Council’s regeneration efforts here have been speeded up by support from the Fife Task Force.  This project has been completed on time and on budget.  Further work to clear empty, run-down properties in the area to make way for new development is also underway.”

 

Kevin Fleming, owner of Little Thistle Gift Shop is very pleased with the facilities available to his business and explained how they have helped his company’s development:

 

“We had been looking to expand the manufacturing business for a while, but needed to find the right space in the right location.  As soon as we saw these units, we knew we’d found the solution – modern, clean and well-insulated and with environmental features like solar panels.  We’re really well-positioned for future growth here.  We’ve invested in new equipment and hope to expand the workforce too.”

 

The business units are part of the new Queensway Technology and Business Park which also has serviced employment land available for businesses looking to re-locate, develop or start up.  Six plots totalling 3.54 HA are available for immediate entry for Class 4 (Office), Class 5 (General Industrial) or Class 6 (Storage & Distribution) businesses.

 

For more information visit www.investinfife.co.uk or call 0345 600 1359.

 

 

Innovative technology company moves into Methil

Limpet Technology has opened a new site at Energy Park Fife, Methil.

 

Founded in 2009, Limpet Technology is a Scottish engineering and R&D company focused on pioneering and distributing height safety solutions.

 

Its award-winning products are used around the world for accessing wind turbines, stage rigging, met masts, telecoms towers, silos and tall buildings.

 

Cllr Altany Craik (2nd from right), Convener of Fife Council’s Economy, Tourism, Strategic Planning & Transportation Committee, welcomes Limpet Technology to Energy Park Fife

By enabling safer and faster access to tall structures, Limpet’s products significantly lower the cost of operations and maintenance work.

 

The company’s new site at Methil allows it to  collaborate with ORE Catapult to test their innovative technology in real life conditions on the Levenmouth Demonstrator Turbine.

 

Limpet’s future plans envisage bringing 50 jobs to Levenmouth over the next few years.

 

“Energy Park Fife offers an ideal location to develop our new product to bring it to market”, Philip Taylor at Limpet Technology said.

Plans for major masterplan for St Andrews West formally submitted

Planning permission in principle is being sought for a major development to the west of St Andrews which will comprise a mix of residential, university, business, education, local retail and community uses as well as associated infrastructure.

 

St Andrews West LLP, a partnership made up of the University of St Andrews, Headon Holdings and other local landowners, is behind the proposals, and they claim the result will be the creation of a dynamic business, residential and learning quarter to the west of St Andrews – the site comprising land at the North Haugh, Langlands, Northbank and land between the Strathkinness High and Low Roads.

 

If approved, the aim is to develop the masterplan east to west over a period of 20 years, with the first phase of development predicated over the need for a new Madras College and a new link road from the A91 to the edge of the proposed school site.

 

The masterplan features housing along with university uses, a business park and employment land, local retail sites, a care home, a hotel, a green network, community and social infrastructure, land for the new Madras College and associated infrastructure like footpaths and roads.

 

Click to view the plans.

Fife tech firm delivers news to Thomson Reuters India

Exterity, a leading provider of IP video and digital signage technologies, has announced that its end-to-end IP video system has been deployed by Thomson Reuters (India) to deliver live and in-house video content to displays and employees’ desktops at its numerous offices across India.

 

The Fife-based technology firm’s IP video solution handles multiple audio and video formats which can be delivered to screens and desktops across Thomson Reuters’s regional offices.

 

Thomson Reuters (India) has eight regional offices delivering services that enable professionals in the financial and risk, legal, tax and accounting and media markets to make crucial business decisions, all powered by the world’s most trusted news organisation.

 

Following the successful deployment of the Exterity IP video system at its UK headquarters in London, Thomson Reuters (India) selected a similar solution that uses its existing IP network to stream crystal-clear live TV from all over the world to a virtually unlimited number of local desktop users.

 

Read the full article here.

Fife manufacturing businesses secure new business

Three of Fife’s leading manufacturing companies have hailed Southern Manufacturing a success having made new business leads at the event.

Fife Fabrications (FiFab), AGS Electronics, and Reel Services returned this week from a successful trip to Southern Manufacturing, the UK’s largest regional manufacturing technology, electronics and subcontracting exhibition.

  • Fife Fabrications Ltd, based in Glenrothes is one of the most advanced manufacturers of Precision Sheet Metalwork, Electro-mechanical assemblies and Precision Machined Components in the UK;
  • Dunfermline-based AGS Electronic’s capabilities range from Printed Circuit Board layout and design, to hand placement, surface mount and conventional assembly;
  • Reel Service Ltd in Glenrothes has been providing Tape and Reel Services since 1987 and manufactures  standard and custom Carrier Tape.

The three Fife businesses exhibited at the three=day show as a means of generating new business, networking and meeting existing customers. Year on year, Southern Manufacturing has produced significant new sales for FiFab and AGS Electronics with the companies receiving 60 enquiries from the Exhibition over the last three years.  This was the first UK exhibition Reel Service has exhibited at in over 15 years.

 

Alistair Williamson, Director of AGS Electonics said:

 

“Southern Manufacturing is an important exhibition for us.  It offers the opportunity to meet existing customers, network and generate new business leads.

 

“Whilst it’s too soon to talk about new contracts and possible opportunities from this year’s show, we have a number of positive new leads.”

 

Reel Service highlighted the positives to come out of Southern Manufacturing.  Andrew Currie, Project Manager, said:

 

“Reel Service has 160 years combined knowledge of Tape and Reel within the senior management team and Southern Manufacturing provided us with the opportunity to showcase this experience and generate interest from UK markets.

 

“Electronics is booming and we have seen an increase in our manufacturing by over 30%.  We’re looking to develop and grow this and will pursue the leads generated from the show.”

 

All three companies exhibited as part of Fife Council’s Trade Development Programme.  The programme is a popular and effective way for Fife companies to showcase their goods and services and events and trade shown.  Email dorothy.smith@fife.gov.uk to find out more.

 

Plans submitted for new £4 million Eden Mill distillery and brewery

Eden Mill has announced plans to create a new distillery and brewery as part of a £4 million expansion project.

 

The new site which is meters away from its current headquarters will see the refurbishment of the former paper mill buildings at Guardbridge.

 

Plans for new Eden Mill distillery and brewery at Guardbridge, St Andrews.

Located at the University of St Andrews’ new Eden Campus, the development will enable Eden Mill to double the number of tourists taking distillery tours from 25,000 to 50,000 a year.

 

The St Andrews based company is listed as the number one tourist destination in Fife on TripAdvisor and the new site will not only enable them to increase visitors but will also allow them to increase production and create more innovative products.

 

Paul Miller, co-founder of Eden Mill, said: “With ambitions to grow the business, it’s the right time for Eden Mill to move forward with plans for a new distillery and brewery. We have always been pioneering, and this expansion can open the door to new product development and continued success.”

 

Check out the full story here.