Letters: Neglected city needs TLC, not a marketing exercise

I cannot believe we are spending £1 million on marketing Edinburgh (News, March 18). What a waste of money.

The money would be better spent on cleaning up our beautiful city to make it a place people would want to come to. Get the basics sorted.

The streets are filthy, the buildings dilapidated and falling into disrepair. Just look at the empty buildings in St Andrew Square, they are covered in green mould. There are bad pavements, the roads are a disgrace, and the endless roadworks all add up to a mess!

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I personally avoid the city centre as it is not a pleasant experience any more.

Edinburgh needs somebody to take a real interest in bringing it back to its former glory as right now I don’t like what I see.

Having been born and brought up here I am totally dismayed at the neglect of this once beautiful city (and I am not alone in this thinking) .

We have so much here and it’s a great place to live, so why not make it absolutely the most perfect place to live?

If you live in a dump you will treat it as a dump – if you live in beautiful surroundings you will respect them – simple! Edinburgh is a beautiful and quite unique city but has been sorely neglected for years and now needs some TLC, not a marketing exercise.

M Quade, Edinburgh

Raising a glass 
to alcohol policy

As far as I can make out the principal bodies opposed to minimum alcohol pricing are the companies that stand to lose profit or have to change their retail policies, the pension funds which invest in them, and the politicians in their pockets.

We could dispense with the sad farrago of distillers challenging the Scottish Government in the European Courts if, once the independence referendum has been lost, the power to set alcohol duty in Scotland is devolved to Holyrood as one of the additional powers which will undoubtedly be offered by Westminster.

Then Nicola Sturgeon could set the tax level on alcohol to generate, in effect, her preferred minimum alcohol price: the raised price differential would go to the Scottish Government, rather than to the shareholders and chief executives of the big retailers, and the traditional pubs the supermarkets are trying so hard to snuff out would be saved.

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That would be a vote-winning policy for me – the big boys won’t like it, but job done.

David Fiddimore, Nether Craigwell, Calton Road, Edinburgh

Economy ahead of vanity projects

The Cypriot bank levy which was debated in their parliament brings to mind the proverb that those whom the Gods would destroy, they first drive mad, for one would be hard put to find a more foolish measure.

The proposed levy will undermine confidence in the banks, discourage foreign investment, encourage domestic capital flight, discourage saving and does not address the central problem of the economy – an overvalued exchange rate. Nor will these effects be limited to Cyprus, but will be felt strongly throughout the Mediterranean Euro-members.

Indeed, given that the measure effectively negates the EU’s 100,000 Euro deposit-guarantee, it will undermine confidence in retail banks throughout the EU.

In addition, the levy will have geopolitical consequences, for Russian investors stand to lose billions of pounds through this measure. Indeed, it is likely that within a few years, the Russia will acquire a naval port in Cyprus to replace Tartus in Syria.

Although we are outside Euro-land, we in Britain should not be too cheerful. Our savings and economic prospects are being robbed from us as thoroughly as the Cypriots, only here the preferred instruments of this are inflation, negative real interest rates and the decline in our currency.

We need a completely different approach that puts sound economics before the vanity projects of a single European currency and country.

Otto Inglis, Inveralmond Grove, Edinburgh

Recycling effort 
a waste of time

I AM all for recycling, but my grey waste bin has not been emptied for five weeks (despite phone calls), and now I find that my local supermarket doesn’t (Can’t? Won’t?) stock the disposal bags for these bins,

So, sorry, Planet, but I am having to go back to my old ways.

AG McGillivray, Balerno