Leader comment: Barriers sad but necessary

Anti-terrorism barriers were requested by Police Scotland and Edinburgh City Council. Picture: SWNS
Anti-terrorism barriers were requested by Police Scotland and Edinburgh City Council. Picture: SWNS
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The installation of anti-terrorism barriers at the heart of the Royal Mile in Edinburgh may seem incongruous to some, but they are a reasonable, if regrettable precaution.

In the wake of the outrages in London, measures to protect pedestrians have been placed on bridges across the Thames.

We also have grown used to bollards around our airport terminals and at the entrances to railway and subway stations since the Glasgow Airport attack a decade ago.

It was thus inevitable that public spaces where large crowds gather, such as the pedestrian area of the capital’s High Street, would be subject to similar protection.

For visitors and residents alike, the new barriers will offer reassurance in the aftermath of the recent attacks.

We have already been forced to make changes to our lifestyles, such as increased security checks, and now we face alterations to the landscape too.

Routinely arming the police may not avert, or even curtail, an attack, but solid protection is an effective way of preventing a vehicle driven with ill intent from causing harm.