LETTERS: Public are loos-ing out at Haymarket station

Haymarket Station's bright interior
Haymarket Station's bright interior
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Regarding your article about Haymarket station, can I point out a serious flaw in the design? (‘Station revamp wins engineering award’, News, October 29).

The nearby public toilets have been closed for months and what we laughingly call a city council has said that where toilets are closed, local businesses should allow the public to use their facilities.

At Haymarket the logical place to go is the train station but the toilets are located beyond the barrier and are only accessible to those going for a train.

This is of no use to anyone caught short in the area and shows just how idiotic the council’s plans to close public toilets are.

Charmaine Lamont, Magdalene Avenue, Edinburgh

No fault cycle law has no place in Scotland

In Europe cycling is popular and vehicle drivers seem more tolerant of the difficulties cycling poses.

However, in Europe people still appreciate civic duty and still have pride in acting responsibly for the benefit of everyone.

I’m sure cycling here would be far more popular if it wasn’t such a controversial hobby. Our cyclists want to have some of the rights available to cyclists in other parts of Europe seemingly without the responsibility.

Other countries in Europe are not plagued with compensation claims as we are here. There really is no place here for a law that a cyclist isn’t at fault for any accident. Why should a cyclist be able to pass responsibility for their actions to another who has no control over what they do? If the no fault law is passed, will claimant solicitors reduce their fee to take into account the ease of settlement without the requirement to investigate what happened?

An idea from Poland - why not just have a compulsory fine if involved in certain accidents?

If a car hits a tram in Poland, the car driver is heavily fined, as everyone can work out where the tram is going. Some cyclists here are so oblivious to what is going on that they can’t even see tram lines on a road in front of them.

I am also looking forward to seeing how cyclists comply with the new 20mph limits coming soon. Will they require to have a speedometer on their bikes? Perhaps speed traps on pavements might be the way forward?

Alastair Murray, Elliot Road, Edinburgh

Gas power plants are the way forward

On Wednesday afternoon National Grid took emergency action to maintain sufficient spare electricity supplies. There was no mention by certain parts of the media that the ‘visible’ UK wind fleet of 9000 MW (megawatts) capacity was producing just 257 MW at 5.45pm (and solar nothing), when demand peaked at only 47,500 MW. Peak demand last winter was almost 54,000 MW.

Power stations totalling 15,000 MW have closed since 2011, so unscheduled shut-downs are likely to increase because power stations are not getting enough downtime for long-term maintenance.

We may escape power cuts this winter, but there’s an ill wind blowing for the winter of 2016/17. The huge Eggborough and Longannet plants are to close in March with combined capacity of 4200 MW.

All of this is due to decisions taken by politicians in 2002 to prioritise renewable energy. It’s time to stop wasting any more money on wind or solar subsides. We need a national programme to construct gas power plants forthwith.

Geoff Moore, Braeface Park, Alness

More road works test Leithers’ patience

Have the Leith people not had enough heartache, with the council disrupting us with roadworks for years now, that they have to dig up brand new roads for more?

The traffic extended from Pilrig to the Foot of the Walk and no cars or buses could move, causing complete havoc. Could this work not have been done before, when the whole of one side was closed off months ago?

This council is so incompetent. It is us locals who suffer. I pity any ambulance or fire engine trying to get up the Walk or Great Junction Street.

Andrew Forrest, Bellevue Road, Edinburgh

Charity begins at home for SNP MPs

According to campaign website Donate My Pay Rise, just 15 of 55 SNP MPs were to donate their pay increase to charity.

MPs from all major parties have now confirmed they are donating their £7000 pay increases to good causes. Except one - the SNP.

Edinburgh, of course, now has only three, not four SNP MPs, but even so, it does appear for all of them that charity begins at home.

Martin Redfern, Royal Circus, Edinburgh

SNP are indulging in grievance politics

I accept that the SNP will take any opportunity to continue their strategy of grievance politics to divide the UK, but SNP Transport Minister Derek Mackay has taken it to a bizarre level.

He announced that he had arranged for all trains running in Scotland to no longer discharge waste onto the tracks.

However, he then went on to say that trains coming up from the rest of the UK still discharged waste and that this was a further example of disrespect for Scotland. If this type of divisive grievance politics was not so pathetic, it would be scary.

Paul Lewis, Guardwell Crescent, Edinburgh