Letters, December 11 2020


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Dereliction of duty over A83

The SNP government’s lack of action in delivering a permanent solution to the problems besetting the A83 is inexcusable.

The SNP has been in power for more than 13 years but has done next to nothing to deliver a permanent solution to the chronic problems with the A83 which are strangling the economy of much of Argyll and Bute.

It is truly shocking to learn from the Fraser of Allander Institute that the SNP government is hoarding as much as £1 billion of funding from the UK Government, some of which could, of course, be spent on sorting out this problem. There are plainly the financial resources to deal with this.

It is an inexcusable dereliction of duty on their part and will not be forgiven or forgotten by people whose jobs and livelihoods are being threatened by this ongoing crisis.

Donald Cameron MSP, Highlands and Islands Region.

Vandalism unacceptable

I was happy to hear from my constituents when I was out and about in Bowmore again recently.

Many pressing  matters were raised including the poor condition of pavements, faultily street lights at Stanalane and potholes on Shore St and Jamieson St.

The recent vandalism of the hand sanitiser dispenser within the bus shelter is as worrying as it is unacceptable.

All of these matters and more have been raised with the appropriate department and I will continue to lobby relentlessly for better infrastructure across the Kintyre and the Islands ward.

Councillor Alastair Redman, Kintyre and the Islands ward.

Licence plea to Auntie Beeb

I see Claudia Winkleman is to be paid £1 million for her ‘work’.

While I am sure she is a capable broadcaster, and may be worth a good salary, surely £1 million is extracting the liquid.

I have calculated that this sum amounts to 6, 349 free television licences for the over-75s. When you then think of other celebrities earning mouth-watering sums from the BBC, this gives clear evidence that the BBC could quite easily continue with the free television licences for the over-75s.

My income does not qualify for pension credit by a small margin but I have now had two communications from TV Licensing reminding me to pay the fee.

Each time it encloses a brochure and various forms to complete in the hope that I feel empowered to pay the £157.50 required to watch TV.

So far, I have decided to weather the storm and not pay. My hope is that thousands of over-75s do likewise and Auntie will realise that expecting us to fall into line is not as simple as it expects.

Silver Voices continue to pressure the BBC to think again and reinstate free licences for the over-75s.

It has my full support and will continue to do so until the BBC bites the bullet and cancels its continued harassment of OAPs.

Keith Abendroth, Campbeltown.

Give carers a helping hand this Christmas

For many of us, the festive season is a time for giving and sharing, which is why we’re inviting you to celebrate Giving Tuesday.

I’d like to take a moment to share with your readers how, in choosing to give to our charity, Revitalise, you’ll be making a real difference to the lives of the disabled people and carers that we support.

As a charity we know that however tricky this past year has been, life is about spending time with the people we love, and everyday life can so easily get in the way of that. Hilary has cared for her son Shaun since he had an accident on holiday in Ibiza, aged 19.

Caring is simply something she does for the person she loves. As she explains: ‘For the last 15 years I’ve been caring for Shaun but I definitely wouldn’t call myself a carer, it’s just something I do as his mum.

‘I’m never, ever, going to give up on my son. Life is too short you know; you need to keep fighting.’

On top of the difficulties this year has presented, disabled people and the elderly have also been left with far less support than usual, as the Emergency Coronavirus Act allowed local authorities to axe their duty of care responsibilities. Feeling vulnerable and abandoned, many carers are close to breaking point.

‘This is why we have launched our campaign, Care For Carers and the fundraiser Raise a Million, aiming to raise £1 million to support carers and their loved ones to access respite care breaks following lockdown.

We have provided respite care breaks – a vital lifeline to so many unpaid home carers and their disabled loved ones – for over 57 years.

So, in celebration of Giving Tuesday this month, why not pledge to give something special to our charity this festive season?

I am so proud to work for Revitalise as we amplify the voice of carers, and will continue to do so until carers stories are heard. Please support our campaign if you can, and help us spread the word about the struggles carers are facing right now.

To find out more about Revitalise, our breaks, or the ways that we may be able to support guests, please visit: www.revitalise.org.uk or call: 0303 303 0145.

Devon Prosser, Revitalise