Fiona Duff: Channelling spirit of Erin Brockovich

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I know that as a community the residents of Edinburgh like little more than a good old moan about the council. They have what can only be described as the opposite of the Midas touch – whatever they lay their hands on turns to dust.

A scheme to save the crumbling buildings of the city appears to have done little than create wealth for some corrupt council workers and their mates. And a network of trams which would be a cost-effective and ecological way to whizz us around town turns out to be one line of less than ten miles with the final bill being twice the amount that the US government spent sending a rocket to Mars.

However, for us mugs who live in the west of the New Town the misery simply continues. Although roads have opened up and traffic can go around Charlotte Square from Queensferry Street you wouldn’t know this from road signs.

It appears that the company developing a building in Charlotte Square don’t want traffic in that area.

At a meeting regarding this matter, handily held on a Thursday afternoon when most normal people are working, this company did not attend but instead was represented by a lawyer working for the council.

So I’m paying council tax which is going into the pocket of a lawyer from a private firm whose main job is to ensure that the street on which I bring up my children continues to have pollution at 25 per cent over the EU guidelines. As you can imagine, I’m less than happy with this situation.

I’d love to re-enact that scene in Erin Brockovich, pictured above, where she offers the opposing lawyers a glass of water from the town where the population are dying of cancer. Oddly enough, the lawyer would rather go thirsty.

So if I can track this lady lawyer down, I’ll ask if she’d like her children to come and sit on the pavement for an afternoon. I’m sure she’ll find that she is awfully busy that day.