Nationalists need a crèche course in consistent views

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IT is the latest twist in the Edinburgh Leisure crèche closure story, that the SNP has been "unhappy" all along (News, March 22).

SNP Portobello and Craigmillar councillor Michael Bridgman claims to have come up with a plan to keep open four crche services and asked Deirdre Brock, SNP convenor of the council's Culture and Leisure Committee, to present it to Edinburgh Leisure.

Is this the same SNP group who voted to cut the budget to Edinburgh Leisure last month?

Is this the same SNP group whose leader, Steve Cardownie, defended the crche closures originally proposed by stating "Edinburgh Leisure's main job is to provide sports facilities – not childcare".

And the same SNP group which Councillor Brock is a member of and when asked on STV about the original closures she stated "this decision had to be taken". Do they think we are not paying attention?

Your short piece on "unhappy" SNP council members also fails to mention that Kirkliston leisure centre, Leith Victoria swim centre, Craiglockhart Sports Centre and the Royal Commonwealth Pool facilities are still to close.

But not to worry – I take it the SNP council members are "happy" with that.

Linda Somerville, Elgin Terrace, Edinburgh

Cutbacks protest missing the point

WHAT should have been a very proud day for staff, and others invited to the Scottish Government/Cosla Early Years Strategy launch by First Minister Alex Salmond, was marred by a handful of protestors against Edinburgh Leisure's efficiency savings.

Fortunately, the children played on oblivious in the excellent outdoor area at the council's Greengables Early Years Centre in Craigmillar last Tuesday. It was relayed to me that the First Minister told them on his arrival at the centre, when he was targeted by the protesters, that I was present and would speak to them.

This I did, explaining that it should be Edinburgh Leisure to whom they made their case. Unfortunately, the women continued to talk among themselves during the First Minister's speech, spoiling it for many present. There are appropriate times and places to lobby or protest. This was not one of them.

Councillor Jenny Dawe, Leader, City of Edinburgh Council

Sensitive touch is key to organ talks

I WAS disgusted and disappointed to read the content of the Life and Work editorial on organ donations (News, March 21).

To use emotive language, such as "a mere collection of spare parts akin to a used car lot" on what is a very sensitive subject seeks to trivialise a matter which is of vital importance to potential recipients of organs and their families and causes extreme offence.

I do hope that the views expressed by very senior figures within the Kirk reflect only their personal opinions and the Church of Scotland as a body will take a more enlightened stand.

However, it is views such as these which will only help alienate some people from the Church, whereas the real objective of the Church must be tolerance and inclusion. Perhaps those who propagate such views would be well advised to read the article on the decline in membership of the Church of Scotland from 1,233,808 in 1966 to 504,383 in 2006 as reported in the same issue of the Evening News.

David McGrouther, Easter Bankton, Livingston

Farmers' market is a tasty prospect

THE prospect of a farmers' market in Musselburgh should be welcomed with open arms.

It is ridiculous to suggest that the effect of a once monthly, half-day farmers' market is going to have a major impact on any local shopkeeper worth his salt. Quite the reverse! I am 100 per cent confident that a farmers' market in Musselburgh would be a highly desirable boost to trade. One only has to experience the buzz in Haddington on their market day.

It gives residents an opportunity to buy a wide range of locally produced food fresh from the farm. From the national perspective, the wider choice of unprocessed food can make a contribution to healthy eating and it won't be shrink-wrapped in over-sized portions.

But far and away the most important reason why we should be supporting farmers' market is to do with climate change. The food on sale will have far fewer food miles, less packaging and less carbon footprint than that available in the supermarkets.

Jenny Mollison, The Laigh House, Inveresk Village, Musselburgh

Plastic not fantastic for your Easter egg

WELL here we are again and most of us have probably had an Easter egg. As we think about recycling have you ever stopped to wonder how long it takes for the plastic containing the egg to break down. Is it not time we looked at another way of packing these products.

James Knox, Assynt Bank, Penicuik

'I have been overwhelmed by the support I've received'

I WOULD personally like to thank the Evening News, its reporter Hazel Mollison and its readers for their words and thoughts for myself and my little dog Megan (News, March 18).

Although the past few weeks have been traumatic for me, I have been overwhelmed by all the support I have received from everyone I have come across. I would like to thank the police for the patrols they make in Pilrig Park. They do their best.

I would particularly like to thank the PDSA for giving Megan a fighting chance. They do an extremely good job in general and they should be supported. I hope the resulting publicity in your newspaper results in a positive outcome. Many thanks.

Richard (full name and address supplied)

THE administrative and reception staff at this surgery were stunned and horrified to read your article about the thugs who kicked little Megan to death and assaulted her owner when he went to her aid.

What kind of morons do that kind of thing and if they can do that (and no doubt laugh about it) what else are they capable of?

Could you please use your good offices to do all you can to bring these people to justice and ensure if you can that they are punished in a meaningful way. Personally, I would flog them to within an inch of their miserable lives.

Please ensure that you do not print the surgery address as we would not want a brick through our window.

Linda Blackmoore, practice manager, Surgery address supplied