Readers' letters: Nessie on film sends wrong message

The ongoing controversy about Education Scotland's "How others see us in film" highlights the bias in that body's approach to how Scotland is represented.

By The Newsroom
Friday, 29th April 2022, 7:00 am

Having previously had to correct a Scottish Government website which purported to say that the English-speaking people of Lothian left and that their land was then occupied by Scots, I now find that the latest Scottish history website (https://www.scotland.org/about-scotland/history-timeline) avoids that by omitting any mention of our English-speaking ancestors at all!

Incredibly, it (somehow) manages to avoid mentioning the Scots too and states that "the Picts were forging a new kingdom; the Kingdom of Alba".When the Scottish people are given this bilge as "history", they are also expected to allow their children to learn about views of Scotland based on three films.

You would think that it would be likely that films like "The 39 Steps", a classic by Hitchcock might be one of them. No. Perhaps "Whisky Galore" would be in the mix, being a classic about Scots' attitudes to the national drink and the privations of war? No. What about "Shallow Grave", a film which introduced Ewan McGregor presenting some young Scots with a challenge in the 1990s? No.

The choice is actually, "Loch Ness" which is a cartoon about Nessie (yes, seriously), "Brigadoon", which is a daft Hollywood film from the thirties about a Highland village which comes to life once every century and "The da Vinci Code", which is about another fantasy and doesn't seem to have much to do with Scottish people at all, as far as I can recall.This is yet another example of the irrelevance and political bias of anything cultural that the SNP can offer us.

Andrew HN Gray, Edinburgh.

Trading down

Apparently Brexit has been responsible for numerous ills, including the loss of billions in trade with the EU and creating a mountain of red tape for British companies that continue to do business with it.

Given that Scotland does four times more trade with the UK than the EU, what impact would breaking away from the UK have on this? What mountain of red tape would be created at the English border if an independent Scotland was ever accepted in to the EU?

If we are to believe what we are told about Brexit, then surely it would be madness to even consider breaking up the UK. After all, we don’t want to make the same mistake twice.

David Smith, Prestonpans.

Get dentistry done

For some time it has been impossible to get an NHS dentist since most practices give priority to private patients paying eye-watering charges.

Those who have lived in Scotland for three years are entitled to have their university fees paid by the Scottish government. Students from England pay £9250 per year, thus Scottish based students benefit by £37,000 or more.

Those getting free education should have to work in Scotland for five years to repay taxpayers' generosity. Thus no shortage of doctors, nurses and NHS dentists who are scarcer than hen's teeth.

Clark Cross, Linlithgow.

Radical solution

In the 1820s after a general strike of workers Sir Walter Scott proposed the resultant unemployed handloom weavers be put to work building the path under Salisbury Crags. These men were political radicals who sought electoral reform and better conditions. That is why it is called The Radical Road. It would be a shame if this important feature of Scottish history closed forever, as is threatened.

David Wylie, Edinburgh.

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