Letters: Life-saving devices ought to be in all public places

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I read how Preston Athletic coach Stevie Adamson’s life was saved (News, December 9) by a defibrillator from an AED (automatic external defibrillation) system.

I was having a heart attack while playing bowls and was lucky that one of the players with me knew the signs straight away and phoned for an ambulance.

If that hadn’t been the case, the only thing that would have saved me would have been if someone had an AED, so I believe more and more places should have them.

AEDs are for the use of the general public, they can be used without any training and they are automated, so they cannot give a shock if the patient does not need one.

I would like to see all sports clubs, gyms, bars, hotels, trains, aeroplanes and airports, and all other public places, have them.

Old and young, male and female people might be saved if they had quick access to a defibrillator.

Scott Finlayson, Dunsmuir Court, Edinburgh

Credit where it’s due to hospital nurses

I HAVE returned home after a stay in ward 109 at the Royal Infirmary and I had to let you know of my experience.

I fell and broke my hip at home. The ambulance service were quickly on the scene and their attention to care was second to none.

The help and assistance at accident and emergency was caring and first class, including the porters and X-ray staff. I was operated on the following day with a partial new hip. The staff on the ward were first class, the nurses most attentive – nothing was a bother for them. The catering staff were most helpful with the delivery of meals, tea and coffee and the food was also fine. The choice was suitable for all tastes when you think of the thousands being catered for.

Plenty of people seem to complain, but not enough write when their experience is like mine.

Irene Bowen, Fa’side Crescent, Wallyford, Musselburgh

Confusion over religious lessons

There is a worrying level of confusion in Scottish schools over how religion should be taught and practised.

Within the curriculum it is separated into two distinct areas, religious observance and religious and moral education.

The former is the practice of religious or spiritual exercises, and the latter is the objective teaching of religious views and beliefs in order to gain a level of understanding of different world views. My son is opted out of the former as we are not believers, but into the latter as I regard a knowledge of religious views as essential for understanding the world.

As such, I find it astonishing when I am called to ask if my son can watch the nativity play at his school. The nativity is a demonstration of the beliefs of a religion, and as such part of learning about it.

It is RME, and while I do not want my son being taught the nativity is true or to pray to a god we do not believe in, I have no problem with him learning the origins of Christmas. Of course, it would be nice if they taught all the origins, including the pagan ones.

Caroline Lynch, chair, Scottish Secular Society

Tour guides bring benefit to Capital

I READ with interest your article about removing tour guides from the Royal Mile (News, December 9). I would suggest to city chiefs who want to cut clutter to start at the bottom of Castlehill and rid the Lawnmarket of all the “tartan tat”.

Is it not time the council got to grips with this area in town? The Royal Mile tours show our visitors the historical side of town and give them an insight into what it was like, not like the “tartan tat” alley, which the council says it is going to have cleaned up. I wonder when.

Leave the tour guides alone, they bring colour and information personnel to the city’s visitors.

The city council’s time would be better spent cleaning up the streets.

N J Taylor, Montague Street, Edinburgh

Salute brave men and women protectors

I WRITE to praise the thousands of brave men and women all across the UK who risk life and limb daily in protecting our children, elderly and infirm.

I am referring to our emergency services and military, who do a fine job for us all. I salute our school crossing patrol men and women who turn out in all weather and face road rage, dangerous drivers, etc, but still always seem to have a friendly smile as they escort bairns and the elderly across the road.

To this army of heroes, I salute each and every one of them. Many thanks.

Robert Wood, Main Street, Newtongrange, Midlothian

Pedestrians need to take care on roads

I AM getting worried by the amount of people taking chances by running in front of buses in Princes Street and the Bridges, especially when it gets dark.

What’s going to happen when the trams are running? The tram situation has brought back to me how it was in 1940s when the trams turned the corners at bends and junctions.

Sometimes the trolley would disengage from the electric lines above and dramatic sparks would fall on the heads of the people nearby or below. We could jump off a tram while it was moving and many of us used to do this backwards and our wee legs would still be moving fast long after the tram moved on.

I did once catch the wheels of my bike in the tramlines going down The Mound at the bad corner then I had to walk with the bike to work all bruised and broken. I made sure I never did this again.

Hilary Haston, Edinburgh