Better than being Sweaty Betty;Jotter;News amp; Opinion

10th December 1999 at 00:00
ANNE BEGG, former head of English at Arbroath Academy (aka Labour MP for Aberdeen South), has not let an accident and enforced hospital stay affect her busy diary.

The wheelchair-bound MP was due to take the chair at last Friday's conference on disability in teaching organised by the General Teaching Council and the SKILL agency for disabled students (page three). Stuck in hospital, she was determined on at least a virtual presence. So she made a 12-minute video in her hospital bed to be played to the delegates.

Begg's message was, as always, upbeat. She recalled the fact that she had no problems with nicknames from cruel kids during her teaching years. Among the fond soubriquets which greeted her as she wheeled herself along the corridors were "Nigel" (as in Nigel Mansell) and "Hot Wheels".

"But since other school nicknames included 'Hitler', 'Sweaty Betty' and 'The Halitosis King', I felt I got off quite lightly," Begg said.

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