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Caught between an aria and the Hampden roar

DAY-TO-DAY events can get in the road of leisured speculation and planning. John Elvidge has had to face queries about the financing of Hampden Park and whether Scottish Opera is underfunded or has been given too large a share of the cake.

Neither issue is close to his minister's priorities, such as raising school standards, but both came prssing across his desk. "No rational person would want these matters to take over, but it is a fact of life," Mr Elvidge says.

But the MSPs' committee that is looking at the funding controversies may have found, through taking evidence, that things are more complex than they first appear - common knowledge to Government officials.

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