Letters: Let’s celebrate heroism of our young people

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I write to ask for your help in raising awareness of an exciting new annual award for young people. I am seeking people under the age of 30 with additional support needs in Edinburgh, and right across Scotland, who have acted with true heroism.

The Annie Dow Heroism Award (TADHA) takes its inspiration from Annie Dow, a young woman who has additional support needs who saved the lives of her mother, father, family friend and dog when she bravely raised the alarm after discovering a fire in the middle of the night which destroyed her home.

Made possible by an anonymous donor who gifted £20,000 to recognise Annie’s heroism and that of other young people with additional support needs in Scotland, one overall TADHA winner will receive a cash prize of £2500 and a specially commissioned TADHA trophy. Two runner ups will also receive £500 each.

Nominations are open until December 31 and I encourage anyone who knows a young person with additional support needs who has acted heroically to nominate them.

Information about TADHA, including nomination forms and guidelines, can be found at www.tadha.co.uk.

Sophie Dow, Founder, The Annie Dow Heroism Award

Combine General Election with EU vote

what an ideal time to hold a multi- vote cum referendum on EU membership – on the same day as the next UK General Election, and let people decide who runs the UK.

Let’s stop all this pussy footing around, let’s stop this rhetoric of what we will get if we elect the Conservatives, let’s stop all the Labour, Liberal and SNP attitude of ‘you will get what you are given’ and not being prepared to let the people have a say.

An election and a referendum ballot on the same date will force all those seeking power to show their cards face up on the EU situation and they can take their electoral chances – political parties having to observe people power this time.

Colin Cookson, Glenrothes

Cameron nails his true colours to mast

I am a proud Scotsman living overseas; not a nationalist, simply a patriot. After listening to all the political rhetoric from David Cameron about being stronger together and how he loves Great Britain, I was absolutely astounded to listen to him talking on Sky News recently regarding the proposed new high speed rail line in England that will link many English cities.

These were his words – “this is a chance to link OUR great northern cities”.

Well. The true colors of our leader shine through for all to see on camera in the House of Commons. OUR great northern cities. There was me thinking that as the Prime Minister of OUR great country, that’s Great Britain, of which Scotland is part, that north of OUR country was Aberdeen, Dundee, Glasgow and Edinburgh.

So realistically his definition of OUR country is only England. His true colours on the table finally for all to see.

Murray Forbes Arnold, Croatia

Wind farm electricity can overwhelm grid

Wind farms are built faster than the grid expands. The problem is that on windy days we need to expensively pay wind farms to stop spinning because the grid close to wind farms fills to capacity.

The amount of wasted electricity is growing. According to Renewable Energy Foundation, the record was broken on October 26.

Those promoting renewables like to boast how many homes can be powered by each scheme, so here’s another boast. On just eight recent days enough electricity to power 50,000 homes for a year was wasted.

We are all paying for this electricity that we never receive.

Mr G Moore, Alness, Highlands

Council’s stand on dog mess deserves support

Edinburgh city council is to be congratulated on its latest attempt to reduce the unhygienic mess left by dogs because their owners are idiots.

The council is considering naming and shaming repeat offenders and increasing the maximum fine following conviction from £500 to £1000.

My understanding is that the dog owner is only given an on-the-spot fine of £60 by the wardens.

Surely these owners should be taken to court and fined the maximum. A few well publicised maximum fines and the problem would be dramatically reduced.

However, the wardens need to patrol early morning and late at night for the ‘doggy walk’, which is when most of the mess is made.

May I also suggest a longer term solution? When new people move in to social housing they should be told there is a ‘no dogs and cats’ policy.

Those already in social housing should be warned that they must clear up after their dogs or face sanctions.

Clark Cross, Springfield Road, Linlithgow

War commemorations should include us all

I very much hope that this week’s important war commemorations will be secular and inclusive.

While the rituals and imagery of Christianity may perfectly frame remembrance for some, they say little to the many non-religious families and those of other religions who lost friends and relatives in the war.

Poppies include all. Crosses do not.

Neil Barber, Edinburgh Secular Society, Saughtonhall Drive