LETTERS: Garden District plan is ideal location for homes

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while I would be reluctant to enter a ‘tit-for tat’ argument with Alison Johnstone, I do feel I need to restate a few facts after her letter in last week’s News (‘Environment is key to city housing plans’, Letters, September 30).

First, I did not imply that the ‘Greens support a City Region Deal that assists with (our) proposed...development’. I simply said that the Greens support the City Deal, which is true.

That deal proposes attracting another 200,000 people to the Edinburgh area and while, like many, I support brownfield development, there simply aren’t the sites available to deliver that scale of housing development.

Council planners and indeed the planning committee have openly accepted that as fact. If Alison Johnston knows of developers that are ‘hoarding brownfield sites’, let her name the developers and the sites.

Lastly, I do feel that Garden District is exactly the kind of location where lower carbon homes can be delivered.

The area is one of the best-served locations for public transport in the whole of Scotland and being next to Scotland’s fourth largest commercial centre at Edinburgh Park, large proportions of residents of the Garden District could simply walk or cycle for the few minutes it would take to reach their work. What could be more environmentally friendly than that?

The Garden District is a world class location for homes to be developed that will help Edinburgh grow, and if the houses aren’t to be built there, where will they go?

They will undoubtedly be built near other existing communities and I really don’t see that being easy or popular in those communities.

Jestyn Davies, Managing Director, Murray Estates

India Buildings not suitable for housing

Having read your article regarding the proposed development of the India Buildings on Cowgate/Victoria Street in the Old Town, I have to question the logic behind Bill Cowan and Marion Williams’ objection to the project on the basis that the building should be used for housing/affordable housing (‘Building up for Indian summer’, News, October 2).

Do either have a building industry background? Do they have any idea what the cost for converting an old building into any form of housing would be?

This is a prime city centre site. We all know affordable housing is required but it has to be at the right cost.

Gordon Whitehead, Corstorphine, Edinburgh

Caging of pheasants should be stopped

Every year, around 40 million pheasants are intensively reared to be released for shooting and the four-month killing season started last week.

Gun lobby spokespeople have already begun trying to fill newspaper columns and the airwaves with their sunshine and roses fantasy picture of their bloody sport.

Cages, industrial hatcheries, giant sheds and release pens are all involved in mass production of these feathered targets.

Animal Aid continues to press for a ban on the purpose breeding of birds to be shot for sport, which Holland introduced in 2002.

Animal Aid recently released shocking undercover footage showing just how wretched and utterly depressing a time the birds have inside their metal prisons.

A civilised country would not permit their use. In fact, a YouGov opinion poll we commissioned last year found that 77 per cent of respondents opposed them.

You can add your voice to those calling for a cage ban. Please contact us for a free information and action pack.

Andrew Tyler, Director, Animal Aid, The Old Chapel, Bradford Street, Tonbridge, Kent, www.animalaid.org.uk, 01732-364546

Sickness threat from uncooked venison

Health Protection Scotland is investigating nine confirmed cases of E.coli O157 across Scotland. These cases have all consumed venison products including, sausages, grill steaks, steaks and meatballs which were raw when purchased and cooked at home.

Dr Syed Ahmed, a consultant in health protection, said “It is important that all deer meat should be cooked thoroughly and should not be eaten medium or rare.

“The risk of E. coli O157 infection can be reduced by careful hand washing, especially after contact with animals, handling raw meats, after going to the toilet and immediately before preparing or eating food and by making sure that food is always properly prepared”.

Advice on food safety is available on the Food Standards Scotland website at: www.foodstandards.gov.scot/food-safety-standards/food-safety-hygiene

Lynne Kidd, Health Protection Scotland

Majority of Scots 
want to keep Trident

The indefatigable Alex Orr writes in the Evening News (Letters, October 1) that “Westminster continues to dump nuclear weapons on the Clyde against the will of the Scottish people.”

A YouGov last month showed 53 per cent of Scots want the UK to keep a nuclear deterrent. Clearly what Alex Orr says is simply not true. A further point to make is that no social attitude survey has ever shown more than a two per cent difference in attitudes between England and Scotland.

Donald McBride, Craigleith Hill Crescent, Edinburgh