I write with regard to the view of Lib Dem MP Mike Crockart (I slapped my kids and regretted it. Now I aim to stop others, Evening News, March 11).
Whilst Mr Crockart is entitled to his view regarding smacking I certainly do not think he has the right to impose his opinions on others and neither should the Government.
I believe that how a parent or family discipline their children is entirely up to them and the state should keep well clear of this argument.
I am a believer that the odd short slap over the buttocks does not do children any harm.
As a child I was a very fidgety boy. I was always touching things which I should not be touching, such as playing with electrical switches.
I remember being told by my parents on several occasions to move away from them but I ignored them and still carried on.
Eventually their patience would wear thin and I would end up getting a slapping on the buttocks which was the only thing that would make me take notice.
I am glad my parents slapped me over the buttocks from time to time.
I would take the slapping any time rather than the 240 volts which could have gone through me.
Alastair Macintyre, Webster Place, Rosyth
Contribution from benches is vital
FURTHER to your article on March 8, there were a couple of points about the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh’s commemorative bench programme I’d like to clarify.
Unfortunately, benches don’t last forever. They fall into disrepair and need constant maintenance. The Garden cannot afford to repair benches indefinitely or to replace them when they are beyond saving.
Our new programme limits each bench adoption for ten years, a fair period of time for an adoption of this kind, and it can be renewed. The price of £2000 per bench for ten years covers the purchase of a quality Scottish oak bench, bronze commemorative plaque and maintenance for a decade. It also supports our work.
The RBGE costs £12 million a tear to run. We receive 75 per cent of that figure from the Scottish Government. It is still necessary to generate £3m through programmes such as the commemorative bench programme.
The RBGE is a world leader in plant research and conservation. Our scientists work in more than 40 countries saving endangered plants and describing new species.
The contribution the bench adoption scheme can make to this is immensely important.
Professor Stephen Blackmore, Regius Keeper and Queen’s Botanist, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh
How a few men can wreck a day
I JOINED the queue into Edinburgh on Tuesday morning a few minutes south of the Forth Road Bridge at approximately 10.10am (hardly rush hour).
No warning was available beforehand on any of the overhead screens travelling south towards the bridge. It took 50 minutes to reach Barnton, still not knowing what had happened.
We were forced into a single lane and, just past the Barnton Hotel, we found a desultory three men working away on the gas renewal works behind vast amounts of fencing.
That is all it had taken to wreck the morning of hundreds of travellers. This is not acceptable and reminds me of the last time the gas board did major work on Queensferry Road – a pathetic number of workmen detailed.
The chaos for travellers was such that these works should be being carried out throughout the night in order to get them finished.
Why is it anything to do with the city of my birth ends up as a disaster?
Mrs S Polson, Main Street, Crossford, Ayrshire
Film shows crime does not pay
Last Friday while shopping in a Granton supermarket I requested £20 cashback from the self service checkout. Unfortunately I omitted to pick it up and on returning found it had gone and had not been handed in.
However, the staff kindly checked the CCTV footage which showed a couple who decided to pocket my £20 rather than hand it in.
My thanks to the staff for providing me with a DVD of the CCTV footage to pass to the police.
I wonder if the culprits think it was not noticed or their dishonesty was worth it?
D Sylvano, Granton Mains East, Edinburgh