Haymarket cycle track plan will ruin businesses

Dear Councillor Hinds,

Business owners on the route of the proposed Roseburn to Haymarket cycle track are opposed to it for these reasons:

n The council states that in designing the new cycle way they have maintained parking and loading bays near businesses. But the plan clearly shows that over 75 per cent of the parking spaces in Roseburn Terrace will disappear. This, shopkeepers anticipate, will have a hugely detrimental impact on trade – contrary to council policy of supporting economic growth.

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n Huge demand on the four remaining loading bays would have a colossal impact on deliveries, goods collections and customers accessing services. Between 40 and 70 per cent of customers travel by car and a third of Roseburn businesses believe they would not survive the drop in sales.

n Various cycling studies claim that these new tracks would encourage more cyclists to shop in the area. Traders say that if you have a TV requiring repair, an oil painting requiring framed or have just bought a sewing machine or a nice hot cup of tea, the likelihood of you cycling with these items is nil.

n It has to be stressed that not one of us business people is anti-cycling. We believe the existing cycle route, NCR1, meets the needs of cyclists coming into town from the west – via the Water of Leith Cycle Track in Roseburn Park, along Roseburn Place, down Russell Road, along Balbirnie Place and up Haymarket Yards.

There are over 7000 people living in the area that use the shops. We ask you to consider their needs before the 120 or so cyclists that might use this track. Please stop this proposal.

List of 34 traders’ names supplied

Fans must self-police to tackle footie thugs

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Ann Budge is right to hammer those misbehaving idiots (not fans that’s for sure) causing serious financial and other disruptions, of late, at Tynecastle.

With a £50000 cost, how many £10 a month Foundation contributions does that represent?

A very crucial part of the answer lies in self-policing. Simply put, if you see something, report it. In the much-maligned Robinson era a regular attendee behind me, drunk most weeks, fell over me. I reported it. The guy was banned.

The Budge managemement structure surely will be no less quick to do the same for these more serious actions. So, in the interests of our great club, stand up and be counted. When occasion demands report the crackpots. Our reputation and our financial position demand no less.

Name and address supplied

No unelected clerics in Spanish institutions

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One thing I enjoy about holidays in Spain is the beautiful churches: you are reminded that the artists and architects of the day often depended on the church as a patron.

Those religious people who still use the buildings for meditation, visit with quiet grace and unlike in Britain, do not expect to have unelected clerics in government institutions, the right to preach to state school children or to be the automatic stewards of civic ceremonies.

If I wanted that on my holiday the nearest other country would be Iran.

Neil Barber, Edinburgh Secular Society, Saughtonhall Drive

Will Humza Yousaf take in 300 children?

The Scottish Government is backing calls for 3000 unaccompanied refugee children to be accepted by the UK.

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Humza Yousaf, the international development minister, said Scotland would take 300.

The SNP is very benevolent with taxpayers’ money for refugees yet Scotland’s education, health and housing are in free-fall. Unemployment is far too high yet the SNP wants to take in thousands of migrants.

In order to convince the public that bringing Syrian refugees to the UK was the correct thing to do politicians and celebrities spoke out in favour. Some even went further and offered to take in refugees to their own homes.

They were Bob Geldof, Yvette Cooper and Ed Balls, Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon.

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Not one refugee, never mind a family, has been thus accommodated so will Humza Yousaf take in some of the 300 children?

Clark Cross, Springfield Road, Linlithgow

EU has hurt Scottish oil and fishing industries

There was something darkly humorous in Tony Blair’s recent warnings of a Brexit of Mass Destruction in Scotland, as if anyone still takes his word on international affairs seriously.

It was New Labour politicians like Mr Blair and Remain campaign director Will Straw taking the Scottish vote for granted – and putting too much faith in the polls – that saw their party all but wiped out north of the Border, but it seems they have learned nothing.

The EU has done significant damage to Scotland, particularly in fishing communities and our struggling oil industry (Norway, incidentally, retains full control over its fisheries and continues to resist its clumsy, one-size-fits-all offshore regulations. So much for following all the rules with no say!).

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With the debate just getting started, I suspect Scottish voters are not so in love with Brussels as EU supporters want anxious Unionists to believe.

Jack Montgomery, Scottish Spokesman for Leave.EU

Open debate raises quality of arguments

In his comment on the upcoming EU vote Phil Tate (Letters, January 15) adds a gratuitous attack on the government and David Cameron for allowing ministers to campaign on either side.

To allow open debate ultimately shows a confidence in the democratic process and the quality of the arguments. Declining to muzzle opposing arguments is a sign of a rather higher view of democracy and the views of the people than that underpinning Mr Tate’s arguments.

Cllr Cameron Rose, City Chambers, Edinburgh

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