It is good to know that plans for Fountainbridge enthuse John McLellan (Opinion, 4 April). I too live near the canalside and have been active in the Fountainbridge Canalside Initiative. Due to the involvement of hundreds of local people over the last two and a half years, what is emerging here are plans for a real neighbourhood.
I was surprised, therefore, to see the same column go on to accuse one of our local councillors, Gavin Corbett, of being against any development. In fact, all three of our local councillors, Gavin, Andrew Burns and David Key, have been actively supportive of our involvement and the kind of place Fountainbridge is seeking to be.
It is important to cast a critical eye on what passes for ‘development’. Development is not always benign. Research shows that money spent with a locally owned business is worth almost 400 per cent more to the local economy than money spent with an externally owned business as it is re-spent time and time again within the locality, so it depends who owns the hotel chain or the supermarkets. Development – maybe, but where and for whom?.
Development that really benefits the local economy is to be welcomed but we need to be sure we know the true costs and the true beneficiaries.
Jane Jones, Fountainbridge, Edinburgh
‘Honestjock’ has a few issues to resolve
I HAVE just received a lengthy, official-looking pamphlet from ‘honestjock’ spelling out reasons for a ‘Yes’ vote in the referendum based upon the premise that Scots are second class citizens in their own country.
I have no idea who honestjock is, since he typically remains anonymous, but he admits to being a senior citizen.
He certainly seems to be carrying a very large chip on his shoulder. The whole pamphlet is full of anti-English vitriol and it is not without inaccuracies.
He refers to subtle, everyday oppression and talks of those from the south of England who have chosen to settle in Scotland - and I am one of them - as being part of the enemy because they bring their attitudes with them. I personally find this offensive.
The impression that is given is of a wholly subjugated nation. There is no mention of how Scots have been and still are dominant and hugely influential in so many aspects of life across these islands.
The pamphlet paints a picture of Scotland that I and my Scottish partner simply do not recognise and we are very much involved with everyday life here.
What worries me is that there are people who hold and expound these bigoted views and that they, God forbid, could possibly be influential in shaping an independent Scotland. That would not bode well for Anglo-Scottish relations.
It is also worrying that the material, albeit sent to me as a senior citizen, seems to be particularly targeted at the under thirties whom he contends will not be fully aware of the extent of the alleged legacy of subjugation and hopes will accept the premise.
Where I actually might agree with honestjock is in respect of the plight of the poorest in society, but this is an issue across the UK.
Separation would turn its back on those with shared grievances down south when concerted action across borders is what is needed to address them, sharing the skills and resources available.
And, oh yes, I had to collect the pamphlet from the sorting office because the incorrect stamp had been used. It cost me £1.17!
Barry Turner, Carberry Close, Musselburgh
Barnardo’s says thank you to concert goers
On behalf of Barnardo’s Scotland, I’d like to say a big thank you to everyone who attended the Love Community Choir Concert in aid of the charity at The Usher Hall on 25 March.
The concert raised an amazing £1200 which will help support our vital work with children, young people and their families in Edinburgh.
We thoroughly enjoyed the concert, the diverse range of music was incredible and they performed it beautifully. We look forward to working alongside Love music again in future and are very grateful for their support and generosity of the audience.
Martin Crewe, director of Barnardo’s Scotland, Oxgangs Road North, Edinburgh
Edinburgh is missing out on music venues
I agree with Jim Barrow of Leith Walk (Leters, April 8) ‘Turn old Odeon into a music venue’.
Every weekend the newspapers are full of adverts promoting concerts, but very rarely is Edinburgh on these lists. Glasgow has two huge venues but the Capital is sadly lacking even one.
Joyce Watson, Edinburgh
Lord Robertson views are wide of the mark
That well-known ennobled Scottish member of the English establishment Lord George Robertson has just predicted in America that Scottish independence “would be cataclysmic in geo-political terms” and “would threaten the stability of the wider world.”
These statements are coming from the man who predicted “Devolution will kill the SNP stone dead!” so we know how much credence to give them.
What next from ‘Project Fear’? Will we all be abducted by aliens; will the sky fall in? This man should just go and hide in a hole.
Gordon Johnson, Carrick Knowe, Edinburgh