Readers' letters: Labour mistake to rule out coalition

Launch of 2022 Edinburgh Labour Manifesto with Cllr Cammy Day and Scottish Labour leader Anas SarwarLaunch of 2022 Edinburgh Labour Manifesto with Cllr Cammy Day and Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar
Launch of 2022 Edinburgh Labour Manifesto with Cllr Cammy Day and Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar
Now that the dust is beginning to settle after the latest council elections, it is increasingly puzzling that the Labour Party is opposing forming formal coalitions with the Tories or SNP, despite such arrangements existing in the last term.

The election resulted in a total of 27 out of 32 councils with no overall control, with the SNP and Labour each securing a majority in one and independents forming a majority in three.

This nonsensical ‘no coalition’ pledge is most recently being played out in Edinburgh, where it is clear that Labour’s leader on the council wants to continue its partnership with the SNP, but Labour HQ has overruled this.

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While Labour accuses the SNP of not valuing councils and undermining local democracy, yet in the same breath they clearly do not trust council colleagues to decide what is best for their own areas.

Labour should also have been clearer to voters in its own campaign material that in the vast majority of cases it had no chance of being in administration given the PR electoral system.

Despite making moder-ate advances at the election, the irony is that Labour, which aspires to form the Scottish Government, will inevitability be in admin-istration in fewer councils than previously.

Alex Orr, Edinburgh.

Church closures pose war memorial threat

I write to agree with Mr Stephen Bunyan regarding the proposed closing of churches in East Lothian (‘Historic churches are under threat’, News, May 5).

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In Fife it is proposed that up to 38 per cent of churches in the Kingdom are to close, nine of them in West Fife.I am a supporter of a UK charity called the War Memorials Trust. The aims of the organisation are the preservation and conservation of war memorials and also recording them online.

Hundreds of supporters have been doing this and records can be found under

I have recorded, to the best of my knowledge, West Fife villages and Dunfermline churches memorials as well as many others over the last few years. Many memorials can be found inside and on outside walls of churches as well as a wide variety of locations and they come in many forms.

Those inside church buildings can be stained glass windows; carved wooden panels; metal plaques fixed to walls and items like fonts, altars, bookcases and smaller items dedicated to a single person, such as communion cups and offertory boxes.

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Many churches have a Roll of Honour listing all those who went to fight for their country. There are memorials to not just the local communities but individuals who paid the ultimate price.

What protection is going to be afforded to these items for the future? On Remembrance Day we declare 'We will remember them' I hope we will be able to!

Mary Richards, Cairneyhill, Fife.

LibDems should not toy with Tories

There was not a hint at either of the hustings I attended that the LibDem candidates would seek or go into a council coalition with the Tories.

All across Scotland they profited hugely from disgust at the Tories, yet we now see them negotiating in places to actually join up with them and put them in control.

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I (foolishly perhaps) gave them a vote in my ward (after the SNP of course) where I believe there is the option of a progressive coalition with the SNP (the largest party) and the Greens and some Independents.

I hope they have the good sense to take it.

Dave McEwan Hill, Argyll.

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