Letters: Edinburgh’s monopoly is not good for Scotland

Proposed Bath Road Studios, Leith Docks
Proposed Bath Road Studios, Leith Docks
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THE announcement that Leith has been identified as the home of a major film and television studio for Scotland demonstrates a complete failure of the so-called creative imagination (News, December 7).

The majority of Scots appreciate the need to maximise the potential of the leisure and creative industries which command an increasing share of the national economy.

The decision to site this facility in the overheated Edinburgh area is dreadful and utterly regressive, both in terms of initial investment cost and subsequent economic act.

Not only will this capture an even larger share will not only allow more public as well as private resources into the area which least requires it, but it will impose further burdens on the Capital itself, for example, travel congestion, house prices, labour shortages and more.

READ MORE: Empty Leith Docks warehouse to become ‘world class’ film and TV studio

This is merely the latest in a long line of short-sighted decisions to centralise facilities and investment. For example, HMRC’s centralisation of Scottish jobs in New Waverley last year and going back to the Scottish Parliament and brand new Scottish Government buildings, also in Leith.

Has the Scottish Government learned nothing from the devastating imbalance that overcentralising the UK in London has created? It has distorted the economy, denied vital opportunities to other areas and yet continues to greedily consume much higher levels of public investment than any other part of the country.

This locational choice also carries huge opportunity cost, denying the economic boost to many post-industrial areas which are increasingly deprived and left behind. My own former mining community of Levenmouth is falling further behind.

We can see Leith clearly across the Forth and we have large industrial sites available and more unemployed. Yet only 2% of working age adults here are employed in Edinburgh because we are denied the modest investment to reopen the short stretch of mothballed railway line.

If not here then many other struggling post-industrial areas in Lanarkshire or Ayrshire are much more deserving of such investment and redistribution would benefit the entire economy.

Stuart McIntosh, Kirkland Walk, Methil.