Letters: It’s time council stopped targeting our motorists

Having lived in Edinburgh and been involved in transport all of my life, I find the attitude of Edinburgh council incredible in relation to their consideration towards motorised movement within the capital.

Given the horrendous restrictions already put in place by the council, city resident motorists, delivery companies and tourists find Edinburgh an absolute nightmare to get around.

We already have major bottlenecks at peak times and if the 20mph limit on the scale proposed comes into force, this will be extended to longer delay periods throughout the day.

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I am the first to welcome safety proposals and believe they are justified in some residential areas, but I am unaware of detailed statistics to justify this blanket proposal.

Do we really want our city to be designated the slowest in the UK and have the council really considered the effect on tourism, confused visitors, higher taxi and bus charges and indeed the implication for business and commerce?

Add to this the effect of the tram project, the latest parking restrictions proposed and the existing road narrowing projects, I believe we are going backwards not forwards.

Finally the way things are going walkers and cyclists will be travelling quicker than the motor vehicle . . . ah, maybe I am missing the real objective of the council?

Seriously it is time that Edinburgh council considered all sections of the electorate that put them into power.

Eric Anderson (retired)

motorist, walker, cyclist and grandfather, Edinburgh

More haste, less speed on Capital roads

Thank goodness for the new 20mph speed limit in Edinburgh, which is about 10mph faster than currently achievable.

Alistair Richardson, Pelstream Avenue, Stirling

Lower speed limits no help

I have just read the Evening News and see yet again Edinburgh councillors have decided to go for the motorist.

More money for parking now on a Sunday - which I wouldn’t mind if it was used to sort our terrible roads but it won’t be.

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Speed limits of 20 miles per hour, which I agree with near schools, hospitals and town centres, but now bus timetables will have to be reviewed as they will take longer to get into town.

Add on all the road works in and around town and you would be quicker to walk.

Is it any wonder that people are going to Livingston? They can take their car, get all the shops they need and are actually made to feel welcome.

Edinburgh is a tourist city now, not a city for the people who actually live and work here.

One saving grace is that people who work for the council will no longer get a free parking space - not before time.

It’s about time the council had some fresh ideas which don’t all depend on getting rid of the car. After all, look at the revenue and jobs that depend on the motorist, taxis and buses.

Give us a break.

Mrs Susan Smart, Edinburgh

Congratulations to Costa book winner Ali

I was delighted to see Ali Smith win this year’s Costa Novel of the Year prize for ‘How To Be Both.’

This is the culmination of a great year for Ali Smith, which saw her win the Goldsmiths’ prize for innovative fiction as well as being shortlisted for the Man Booker prize.

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Not least among the many accolades deservingly given to ‘How to Be Both’ was the 2014 Saltire Literary Book of the Year award, presented back in November. With new sponsors and an expanded line-up of award categories in 2014, the Saltire Literary Awards have become the largest and arguably most prestigious recognition of literary excellence in Scotland.

The Saltire Society was able to recognise Ali’s outstanding talents as far back as 1995, when she won that year’s First Book of the Year award for her impressive debut ‘Free Love and other stories’.

In 2015, I look forward to seeing the Saltire Literary Awards sustaining a great track record in recognising and celebrating Scotland’s wealth of writing talent, both new and established. Many congratulations also to Ali on her latest, richly deserved win.

Jim Tough, Executive Director, Saltire Society, Fountain Close, High Street, Edinburgh

More self censorship will help avoid attack

The recent attack on satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in France should highlight the fact that we must not give amunition to organisations like ISIS or any other groups of ideologists who perpetuate their beliefs to us via the media.

The free press has a lot to answer for. Satirical magazines such as Charlie Hebdo and Private Eye, for example, have to respect the views of religious factions, whether they are banned organisations or not.

The right of free speech has been over-exploited. Organisations like Isis have to be taken seriously and ridiculing them will lead to more killings and will also give them more support worldwide, just like St Patrick’s day in America raised funds for the IRA.

Charlie Hebdo and other satirical magazines have to be heavily censored, for they are the worst form of propaganda for the media to make a point.

James E Fraser, Cockburn Street, Edinburgh