Holding the line

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Austerity taxation, it seems, does not extend to wealthy proprietors of Scotland’s salmon angling rights, as the SNP land reform bill ­continues the Tory policy of exempting them from paying sporting rates.

Yet a week’s salmon fishing on the Tweed can cost thousands of pounds, but no direct contribution is made towards council services.

The bill makes it very difficult for a Community Body to acquire salmon rights by creating many caveats, in particular, “eligible land which consists of salmon fishings”.

The SNP is well aware salmon fishing rights in Scotland are normally sold separately, without any land, so they cannot be acquired by a Community Body. Thus the Scottish Government give the illusion of backing community ownership, but the ­reality is that the status quo will prevail with most Scots still excluded from our rivers and lochs.

Jim Stewart

Oxgangs Avenue, Edinburgh