I write to take issue with and respond to Mr Paul Kelly, the Edinburgh-based Royal Mail delivery director, who has once again written to the Evening News, this time on July 24 in regard to privatisation.
In essence it seems like Royal Mail’s mouthpiece in our area is at the very least being disingenuous or just straightforwardly toeing some government/management party line in regard to this very important issue.
Mr Kelly tells us that the UK Government has made clear it doesn’t have the money to allocate to Royal Mail ahead of schools and hospitals. Well, let’s get serious about that statement.
I can’t be the only one in the country who fails to see the government rushing to pour money into any school or hospital at this time.
I ask Mr Kelly, where are these schools and hospitals that the government wants to pour money in to. I’m all ears – name them.
To also say, as Mr Kelly does, that other privatisations have been successful and then to quote Rolls-Royce and British Airways as examples strikes me as being disingenuous in the extreme.
I can’t see how the examples used are like for like – few people I know will ever be able to afford a Rolls- Royce and I’ve yet to meet someone who agrees that British Airways is a success story, given the prices to fly and the number of routes it now has from Edinburgh compared with pre-privatisation.
Perhaps we should have asked people if they thought the utility company privatisations were successful.
And therein lies the tale. Is Mr Kelly seriously expecting us to believe that the national service provided currently by Royal Mail – to remind you, a company which has almost 400 years of national heritage, tradition and public service – will remain the same or improve when there is massive public and political opposition to the sale of a company which has increased its profits by about 60 per cent to more than £400 million? And where it would seem that, despite that, the government and the Royal Mail board would have us believe that the company is about to disintegrate and fall apart.
My husband works for this company, he is one of the 96 per cent of the employees who are opposed to this privatisation and I pray he will continue to fight for a better alternative to privatisation.
Vested interests are driving this move to privatise for profit – it really is as simple as that.
It is also worth mentioning that I am writing this, as it would seem that any Royal Mail employee who does not follow the company party line would be disciplined for expressing their view in this way.
Mr Kelly, as a director, may wish to examine this archaic and unacceptable behaviour and allow employees to express their views on the sham that he is promoting.
Mary Wright, Drum Brae Drive, Edinburgh
UK firms should come clean on dirty energy
From this autumn, UK companies will be legally obliged to publish their carbon emissions. But there is a gaping hole in the new rules.
Banks and pension funds will have to report the climate impact of the light bulbs in their offices, but they won’t have to say anything about the coal, oil and gas projects they finance worldwide.
Banks and pension funds are driving us towards climate disaster by providing vast sums of money for fossil-fuel extraction.
Many of these dirty energy projects also ruin the lives of the local people who have to live with the effects of huge open-pit coal mines, or spills from oil drilling.
The government must make the banks come clean on the emissions from the fossil fuel projects they finance, so that we can push them to stop bankrolling climate change. After all, it’s our money they’re spending.
Alex Porter, Dryden Street, Edinburgh
Religious groups are losing privilege right
Gus Logan avoids the main point of a previous letter which stressed the Protestant and anti-Catholic features of the monarchy of the UK and Scotland and claims in the Evening News (July 27) that secularists are trying to ‘de-Christianise’ Scotland’.
But Scotland is ‘de-Christianising’ itself. Recent surveys suggest that only about half the population of Scotland now claim to follow the Christian faith.
It is time for Scottish and UK institutions to recognise the diversity of religious and moral views and remove remaining privileges in public life that are granted by law to Christian churches, such as places on local authority education committees.
Norman Bonney, Palmerston Place, Edinburgh
Bigger homes needed for ex-campus site
Regarding your article about the demolition of Telford College Campus (News, July 29). You mentioned it received heritage status 15 years ago – so this means nothing?
Other former school premises in Edinburgh have been turned into lovely apartments, why can’t Miller Homes do this with the college, which used to be Ainslie Park High School?
The old gym halls and other outbuildings should be demolished and some nice houses or apartments built to a decent size like other builders in Edinburgh have been doing.
I have been round a few apartment blocks in Edinburgh over the last two years and from what I see, Miller is still trying to cram too much into too little.
The other builders are putting in lovely spacious accommodations, I have only viewed the Miller Homes properties from the bus/car (as they are so close to the road) and it seems to me, their wee places could fit right into some of the other builders’ main living rooms.
From a very disgruntled ex-pupil who also used to live close by.
Bertha Henretty, Edinburgh