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Back in charge

Visitors to John Wilson's office in Barrhead have been rather taken aback by a new but familiar face on the East Renfrewshire education director's throne.

For, as they enter the sanctum, rather than the Baron of Barrhead's familiar visage, they've been confronted in recent weeks by the face of James McVittie, former head of St Ninian's High of that parish. Wilson has even asked James for advice, and visitors have been told to greet him and pay a valedictory compliment.

But it's not a McVittie takeover in retirement, just a portrait painted of the erstwhile heidie by a talented pupil which has made its way to the baron's lair. And the most convenient place to store it temporarily has been on the director's seat of wisdom.

"James is comfortable there," as the baron puts it, nodding over to the painting whose Mona Lisa-style eyes follow the visitor round the room.

Quite.

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