Check for the warning signs

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TEARS of grief shed over the loss of Sheffield schoolgirl Bethany Adcock will be mixed with a sense of bewilderment at how such a young and promising life could have been taken from her family so soon and so tragically.

Bethany, who was 14, was clearly well loved by her friends, respected by her teachers and will be missed by everyone who came into contact with her.

She died after apparently inhaling some kind of solvent.

The results of a post mortem are awaited to determine the exact cause of her death. But we do not think it inappropriate to take this opportunity to urge parents to take whatever steps they believe necessary to avoid a similar tragedy visiting their homes and make sure their children are aware of the dangers of solvent abuse.

There are warning signs to watch out for and every parent should be on their guard at this moment.

For, as was the case with Bethany, tragedy can strike at the most unexpected moment and claim the must unlikely victim. We hope her terrible and senseless loss will serve as a warning to others.

Region ready for digital challenge

THE digital age is presenting real challenges to scores of companies who are eager to keep abreast of the fast-moving technologies upon which every business depends these days.

And this is especially the case in the digital sector where the pace of change is often at breakneck speed.

That is why we are lucky to have Digital Media Centre in the heart of the region, at Barnsley, to make the most of superfast Digital Region network broadband services now available, offering upload and download speeds far in excess of anything previously available.

Early signs from the centre are that it is a runaway success with firms moving there to make the most of the opportunities available. We look forward to more of this kind of development in the months and years ahead.

Keen to work

NEWS that hundreds of young people overwhelmed John Lewis in Sheffield when the department store announced that it was looking for 87 temporary assistants in the run-up to Christmas should make some people stop and think. For it is too easy to dismiss youngsters as layabouts for whom life is too easy. This shows that there are plenty who are willing to earn a living and we hope that companies will soon be in a position to help them.