Thanks Jason. I appreciate its not a problem with the news-scroller. Based on your comments I have read up a bit more on mailpress. It turns out there is an option where you can specify jquery is preloaded and it doesnt include it the widget code . If I select this option then things work correctly.
In relation to jquery being loaded in the head – yes thats me. I use jquery maphighlight on one of the pages and I cant workout how to enqueue jquery-maphight so it works properly – work in progress I am afraid.