Velodrome needs a roof, not bulldozer
WELL it's happened again. The two-day track cycling Grand Prix due to take place at Meadowbank Velodrome over the weekend had to be shortened again, due to the wet weather.
The wooden track cannot be used when the surface is wet.
We don't need the velodrome or the athletics stadium to be bulldozed. All we want is a roof.
What a waste of time and expense for all the competitors who travelled to Edinburgh to compete in this event, not to mention all the local youngsters who were looking forward to taking part. Also, what a waste of time and effort for the event organiser, Brian Annable, and all his helpers.
As this is an international event, cyclists from Greece, Spain, Italy, the Czech Republic and of course top cyclists from England were due to attend.
How can we hope to bring on Scottish riders like World and Olympic champion Chris Hoy with the outdated facilities provided for sporting cyclists in Edinburgh?
Peter E Tuck, Summerside Street, Edinburgh
SNP must stick to vow on transport
IT is astonishing to hear George Foulkes and Sarah Boyack accusing the SNP of "punishing" Edinburgh because they promised to stop the tram project. That is rich coming from the previous Labour Glasgow "Mafia"-controlled Scottish Executive who shunted thousands of jobs out of Edinburgh. Not only that they denied Edinburgh the extra funding which, as the capital of Scotland, the city should have received.
It was even more ridiculous to hear Malcolm Chisholm, when trying to push the case for trams, refer to the buses lined up in Princes Street. No wonder! This is due to Labour/Lib Dem traffic plans. Practically every bus now goes along Princes Street whereas before the crazy changes some buses went around Charlotte Square and into George Street which alleviated the pressure on Princes Street.
When will Labour/Lib Dems get it into their obtuse heads that the majority of the citizens in Edinburgh do not want trams?
The SNP must fulfil their promise and stop the trams or they will be forever discredited in the eyes of the Edinburgh electorate.
Emily Laing, West Maitland Street, Edinburgh
Return of trams a serious mistake
BRINGING back the trams would be a serious mistake for the following reasons:
The visual impact. One of the most beautiful streets in the world, Princes Street, will be disfigured by ugly poles and cables required for the trams.
The disruption caused by relocating the services under the carriageway and the laying of the tram tracks will be on a scale never experienced before in the Capital. Many businesses will never recover.
The inflexibility of the system, which is typified by only having one stop in Princes Street, which means a lengthy walk for passengers.
The tram tracks are dangerous for cyclists.
We have an excellent bus service which will be sacrificed to some extent for the trams by reducing services and losing valuable road space which will result in longer journey times.
The only downside to the bus service at present is the delays at bus stops, particularly in Princes Street. This problem could be overcome by using "off-bus ticketing". In Rome, for instance, a bus arrives at a stop, a large number of people can get off and on the bus in a few seconds because no tickets are issued by the driver.
Vincent McCann, Ferniehill Gardens, Edinburgh
Poll needed on Labour's position
HAVING read the outline of the proposed EU "reform treaty", the Labour Government's position not to hold a referendum on this document is simply untenable. The Labour position on holding such a referendum has changed on no fewer than six occasions in the last four years, with Tony Blair agreeing to hold a referendum in 2004. It is no wonder that cynicism and scepticism has grown in British politics.
In Ireland, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dermot Ahern, has said it is "likely" that the Government will hold a referendum on the EU treaty. He has cited the fact that given "these changes haven't made any dramatic change to the substance of what was agreed back in 2004, I think it is likely that a referendum will be held".
If the substance of what was agreed in the European Constitution has not dramatically changed, it is simply ridiculous for the Labour Government to do a U-turn and not hold a referendum as promised. A failure to do so, having been promised at referendum, will only increase cynicism and apathy towards the European Union from the public and increase demands for the UK's withdrawal.
Alex Orr, Bryson Road, Edinburgh
Bosses getting rich at staff's expense
AS a postal worker I voted for strike action, not that I can afford to do it.
I am a married man with two children and I have a mortgage, council tax and all the bills you have to keep a roof over your head, but neither can I afford a pay cut - that's what it is. They have offered 2.5 per cent, but they gave it in one hand and took it back with the other and more.
First, scrap the night shift, end bonuses for early morning starts, close post offices and sorting depots. They want to move services to WH Smith and this has been the problem all along, they have taken postal orders, passports, vehicle licences, pensions stamps and that's why we have seen local post offices closed.
We have our regulator, the private companies don't take TNT, they won't deliver, they pay us 12p a letter to deliver. How much does it cost you, the public, to post a letter?
The Labour government have sold the Royal Mail down the river. Adam Crozier and Alan Leighton are not taking pay cuts, they get 1 million plus expenses. It's not fair.
But we have to try to stand up to this as the ordinary worker is being used while the bosses are getting richer and richer at our expense.
Pat Swanson, Leith Street, Edinburgh
More prisons and longer sentences
IN England and Wales the prison population has now exceeded 80,000.
In Scotland Kenny MacAskill has a similar overcrowding problem where there are 7000 inmates which, according to a prison service study could rise to 12,000 by 2030.
Politicians continue to solve the problem by sending fewer people to jail and allowing some prisoners out of jail early despite the high re-offending rate.
If, as promised, more police are recruited to tackle out of control serious crime then we can expect even more convictions.
Sentences are increasingly dictated, not by concern for public safety, but by the number of prison places available.
Community service is a failure since nearly one million offences are committed every year by the 155,000 criminals supposed to be under supervision in the community. There is only one way to curb the villains and that is to build more prisons, and full sentences must be served, with no remission.
When a criminal is locked up, it is impossible for him to commit any more crimes. Only then will the public feel safe and the would-be criminal deterred.
Clark Cross, Springfield Road, Linlithgow
Recycling wasted on some workers
MY wife and I were at the council refuse collection point in Craigmillar on Saturday at 5.45pm.
On arrival I was approached by what I would describe as management. I was told to put everything into the landfill skip.
I informed him I had items for recycling. His reply: "Put it the landfill as I finish in five minutes." I told him it was 5.45, and he said "Just put it in the landfill, mate," in a nasty tone. I then asked him if recycling stopped at a certain time, and told him I was separating it. He then stormed off.
How much is going to landfill? Because the council staff don't seem to understand the basics of recycling.
May I suggest a refresher course for the staff at the council depots. After all, if we are trying to meet EU targets surely we should get this sorted. To avoid these massive fines that we will incur.
Come on Edinburgh City Council, get your house in order. After all it's us that will have to dig deep to pay these fines.
Mr J Froude, Gilmerton Dykes Crescent, Edinburgh
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Edinburgh
Thursday 23 May 2013
Temperature: 5 C to 10 C
Wind Speed: 25 mph
Wind direction: North west
Temperature: 3 C to 13 C
Wind Speed: 20 mph
Wind direction: North east