Letters: Don’t waste more cash on end of tram works party

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I thought at first the suggestion to celebrate the end of the tram works was sarcasm on the part of Margo MacDonald (News, September 10), for she usually talks such common sense. I am totally against any further expense in this regard.

We are the laughing stock of the country over this fiasco. After all, once they are up and running they may prove to be a white elephant.

The council should now ensure that the individuals with business losses are fully compensated. I would like to know what certain individuals received, those who walked away from the job, it being beyond their capabilities. I understand that a representation from each political party was involved in the project. What fee was received for this?

Let’s just quietly get the trams up and running. It seems to be the norm nowadays for failure to be rewarded.

Mrs F Rutherford, Leith

Article was fascinating insight into Flodden

Flodden left the Capital with real fringe benefits. Those benefits surely must include having a writer such as Marianna Clyde giving us an interesting and historically informative article on local history (News, September 10).

Please give us more from this learned lady.

Alice Beberman Chute, Inveresk Village, East Lothian

Accused should be granted anonymity

After all the publicity surrounding the trial of Coronation Street star Michael Le Vell it is yet again obvious to me that people accused of crime should be granted anonymity until proven guilty. This is especially important in the case of celebrities, whose reputation is on the line and even after being found innocent are often tainted with the feeling “there’s no smoke without fire”.

It seems a shame to me that while he was under arrest and awaiting trial that ITV took him out of Coronation Street. Perhaps this was his own decision, but wouldn’t it have been better for them to stand beside him and show him some support? I know it is easy to say this in hindsight, but as an accused man he was still “innocent until proven guilty” and therefore should be treated as such in every aspect of his life.

Now Nigel Evans, the deputy speaker of the House of Commons, has resigned his post after being charged with sexual offenses. Perhaps he wants to concentrate on clearing his name and can’t do this while in this high-profile job, but I suspect he is pre-empting the inevitable calls for his resignation which seem to come all too quickly when someone is merely under suspicion and not proven guilty.

Ever since the scandal surrounding Jimmy Savile came to light, there seems to be some sort of witch hunt going on to root out sexual predators in the world of celebrities. While it is an excellent message to send out that no one is above the law, it could eventually backfire if more people are found innocent, and start to 
undermine the true cases of abuse.

While victims are able to hide their identities, those accused of crimes are named and shamed before the trial has even begun. Now it would seem that the so-called “victim” in the Le Vell case perhaps has her own case to answer and while Mr Le Vell has been acquitted, he must surely be feeling a lot of anger and resentment that the girl who dragged his good name through the mud remains unnamed.

Hopefully he will have some legal recourse.

Brian Armstrong, Cramond, Edinburgh

University should get rid of tower blocks

Congratulations to Edinburgh University for making it into the top twenty of world universities (News, September 10). However this has not been achieved without some cost.

I am old enough to remember what was called at the time (circa 1961) the rape of George Square, when beautiful Georgian buildings were pulled down by the university and two tower blocks were erected.

I am not against progress, and education is important, but the university with its new found status could now redeem itself by pulling down these ugly buildings and erecting something more appropriate in the area.

George Ritchie, North Gyle Terrace, Edinburgh

Cultural shift needed if cycling to be accepted

For cycling to become part and parcel of Scottish culture I feel there would have to be significant and lasting change in the national psyche for this to come about.

Legends of the sport like Sir Chris Hoy might have the right idea, and indeed profile, to help bring this about, but in a country where the car is king, cycling as a practical mode of transport will always remain a poor 
substitute.

You just have to look at countries like Holland and France, where cycling is not only part of normal life but also quite fashionable, to realise that Scotland lags way behind its continental neighbours and will continue to do so, as long there is a shortage of safe cycling routes and an attitude that is geared first and foremost towards motoring.

Angus McGregor, Albion Road, Edinburgh

Lamont’s bedroom tax claim is contradiction

Yet again the Labour leader in Scotland blurts out another nonsensical statement.

Referring to the bedroom tax, Johann Lamont declared that if in power, she would cancel the bedroom tax much quicker than the SNP. Yet she knows that this was legislation passed at Westminster and cannot be countermanded unless Scotland is independent and free to implement its own rules of statute – the very thing she is adamantly opposed to!

Robert Gritton, Glen Drive, Aberdeen