THE year began with the Evening Times doing what the Department of Work and Pensions should have been doing.

After the DWP decided it wanted to close half of the city’s Jobcentres we tested how long it would take to travel to the new locations.

It was the start of a lengthy campaign which highlighted the stupidity of the proposals and the damage it would further inflict on already struggling people in disadvantaged communities.

We got the backing of politicians of every party, even the Tories in Glasgow were sceptical of what the closures would mean.

Ken Loach, legendary film director, who had only recently produced I, Daniel Blake backed the campaign.

Eventually the DWP ignored most calls but chose to save Castlemilk, which we had highlighted the time and distance to the alternative in Newlands.

In the early spring it was election time again with the battle to control Glasgow City Council fiercer than ever before.

The SNP on a roll of victories in the city was confident it would at last take the prize that had so far eluded it, the biggest council in Scotland.

The Evening Times played its part in the democratic process by hosting a hustings at the City of Glasgow College with the two main contenders for council leader, Frank McAveety form Labour and Susan Aitken from the SNP.

Martin Bartos was the senior councillor representing the Greens and Carole Ford for the LibDems and Euan Blockley a young Tory candidate making up the panel facing tough questions form an audience of Evening Times readers.

It was all change at the City Chamber in May with the SNP overtaking Labour as the largest party but short of a majority which gave Labour encouragement that their fortunes were changing.

The Tories had the biggest smiles on their faces with the party winning councillors in seats in parts of the city they would never have dreamed off.

In the midst of the campaign Theresa May sent the country into a spin by announcing a snap election.

It meant that the seven MPs in Glasgow who were all new to the job just two years earlier had to go through the whole gruelling election campaign once again.

On election day Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, began a UK tour in Buchanan Street as a he led a party revival that deprived Theresa May of her majority and brought the party back from the wilderness.

Labour had more good news in Glasgow when it clawed back one of the seven Westminster seats is lost to the SNP in 2015 and Paul Sweeney became the MP for north east.

David Linden was the other new face taking over in Glasgow East from Natalie McGarry who left the SNP and didn’t stand.

Both new MPs have hit the ground running with eloquent speeches in the Commons and taking on issues like welfare reform and shipbuilding in Glasgow, topic covered extensively by the Evening Times.

The future of shipbuilding was a constant story throughout the year with order won then the UK Government going back on a much trumpeted pledge to build 13 frigates with only eight guaranteed On welfare we revealed the disgraceful treatment of Margo Laird, who was left with no cash for a year by the DWP after being sanctioned repeatedly and left reliant on her family. Mr Linden had raised the mater in the House of Commons.

As the year started to draw to a close it emerged there would be a threat to one of Glasgow’s most famous landmarks and one of the world’s iconic sporting venues.

The SFA began seriously thinking about ditching Hampden as the home of Scottish football and was even thinking of moving to Edinburgh and to Murrayfield.

The rugby bosses were rubbing their hands at the thought of the cash football fans would bring to their game. We told them loudly and clearly what we though in a front page message. Rugger Off!

We also took a closer look at the massive number of fixed odds betting terminals in Glasgow city centre and in the poorest communities.

We found 40 machines in 10 shops clustered around Central Station and the same firms having shops within yards of each other in Possilpark, Shettleston and Springburn.

All with one goal in mind. Maximising profit.