Letters: Seeing red over cyclists’ flouting of traffic laws

Cyclist going through a red light. Picture:  Ian Georgeson
Cyclist going through a red light. Picture: Ian Georgeson
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THe entertaining article by John McLellan on his cycling experiences in Edinburgh (News, November 29) was marred for me by his asserting breezily that it’s all right to cycle the wrong way along a one-way street.

He says “if nothing is coming it’s safe” to use it thus; and equally it’s all right to cycle through a red traffic light “when I saw nothing at all in sight”, and anyway, he says, he’s “just doing what millions of pedestrians do”.

Alistair Darling. Picture: Jane Barlow

Alistair Darling. Picture: Jane Barlow

It should not come as news to him that cyclists as well as motorists are bound by the Road Traffic Act 1988. The Highway Code has a whole section entitled Rules for Cyclists which ought to be required reading for them. In my copy, Paragraph 50 in the cyclists’ section says “You MUST [in red] obey all traffic signs and traffic light signals.” Paragraph 55 “You MUST NOT [in red] cross the stop line when the traffic lights are red.”

Instead of flouting the law when it suits him, Mr McLellan should abide by it and set an example to his fellow cyclists.

Andrew Broom, Traquair Park West, Edinburgh

A happy Christmas to the humbug duo

GEORGE Ritchie’s “Bah humbug” letter (November 30) was a perfect juxtaposition with Neil Barber’s “religious recruitment” letter on the same page.

Mr Ritchie’s Christmas is, I fear, all that is left in Mr Barber’s secular world. Mr Barber condemns free bibles for school children and with that denies children an opportunity to know anything other than the nation’s hedonistic view that Christmas is all about excess – too much food, too many fairy lights, too much booze, too much money spent, for what? How hollow our lives would be if that is as good as it gets.

The secularist’s mean-spirited, two-dimensional view of the world denies the full richness of life; of a love that was born at Christmas; of world where forgiveness and hope are possible and where Christmas does indeed go on forever but without the need for fairy-lights or supermarket adverts. To quote St Paul: “If I have no love, my speech is no more than a noisy gong or a clanging bell.”

Go with God, Mr Barber and stick around for Easter Mr Ritchie! Happy Christmas one and all!

Karen Keil, Cllr for Drumbrae Gyle, Drumbrae South, Edinburgh

London politicians are running scared

Forget oil – the consequences of an independent Scotland are immense to the three main parties, who have contrived to form their alliance against Alex Salmond.

In a nutshell, the likelihood is that the Labour Party would cease to be a credible challenge, having lost so much support. The Lib Dems would be rendered impotent. And the Tories would reign supreme – at least for the foreseeable future

Westminster parliamentarians – and more significantly their shadow pay-masters – are losing sleep.

Fearful that the Scottish people have finally woken up to the fact that the Union no longer works for their country and that they have been hoodwinked for decades.

Let’s not be fooled – Alistair Darling, left, and Alistair Carmichael are the real “pretenders” here – parliament’s henchmen.

“Better Together” translates to “Better for me and my party!”

Phil Cowan, Laverockbank Avenue, Edinburgh

Thanks to everyone who helped win prize

We were pleased to see your report (News, November 29) about Woodlands School’s success in The People’s Millions competition last week. The £50,000 prize will be used for a much needed all-weather, multi-sport play area for children at the special school in Currie.

However, I would just like to add to the comments by Jackie Killeen, director of the Big Lottery Fund Scotland who praised the people of Currie for supporting this project so wholeheartedly.

As well as fantastic support from the community in both Currie and Balerno, we were overwhelmed by the massive goodwill and enthusiasm shown to us by Edinburgh as a whole.

Companies such as Lothian Buses, Lindsays solicitors, Apex Signs, plus major supermarkets, Edinburgh City Council, taxi firms, many schools throughout the city and businesses, small and large, but too numerous to mention here, gave generously of their resources, expertise, time and energy in supplying printing, banners, sharing social media, handing out flyers, and so on.

The biggest thank-you of all, of course, goes to everyone who voted for the SOS! Support our Sport campaign by the Friends of Woodlands School.

Liz Power, chair, Friends of Woodlands School

Let countries sort out their own troubles

Death by stoning for convicted adulterers is currently being written into Afghan law.

What this means is that Sharia law is returning and human rights, won at a great cost since the Taliban fell from power in 2001, are now endangered.

In Iraq 18 Sunni Muslims were murdered by Shiite Muslims.

Billions of dollars/pounds have been spent on promoting human rights, especially for women and girls, but this has rapidly eroded.

Thousands of allied troops have died or been seriously injured and even more civilians.

Why do we bother with Iraq and Afghanistan since the West and Russia have never made any difference?

Why does Britain stubbornly hang on the coat tails of America and sacrifice our brave soldiers?

The billions spent on pointless foreign wars would have done more good at home.

We should also keep out of the Middle East and let them get on with it.

Clark Cross, Springfield Road, Linlithgow