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Is Perth really best small city in Europe?

Perth has attracted many major events including the GB Youth Cycling Tour
Perth has attracted many major events including the GB Youth Cycling Tour

Sir, – I wonder why Perth is being called “the best little city in Europe” and who is behind this new name?

What is the maximum population set to qualify as little?

Dundee, by international standards, is a small city. Brechin is a city but much smaller than Perth. Were these two included in the assessment?

I find both places, and many others in Europe, much more attractive than Perth.

Its centre is characterised by buildings with no architectural merit and/or in states of dilapidation.

In the evenings it is dead. I can think of many places which are far more attractive. Dundee is one and by international standards is certainly small.

It has two universities with reputations for innovation and a large international student population.

The site is superb and the waterfront re-development will make it even more attractive.

I suspect that for every Dundonian who regularly visits Perth, more than 10 Perthites frequently go to Dundee.

I wonder what percentage of people in either place think Perth is the best little city in Europe?

Malcolm Burley.
67 Minto Street,
Edinburgh.

 

Insidious campaigning

Sir, – How do you come to terms with the shocking murder of a compassionate, hard-working, deeply humane young woman who spent her life fighting for social justice and human rights?

Jo Cox’s life was taken from her in the most brutal way imaginable.

There are almost no words to describe such a senseless act, but it is possible to recognise the symptoms of a disease which has been spreading unchecked throughout parts of the UK since the referendum campaign began.

Just an hour before her murder, Nigel Farage unveiled an enormous poster showing Syrian refugees fleeing to Slovenia last year.

The message on the poster called for Britain to “break free from the EU and take control of our borders”.

The image was a totally objective news photograph taken by Jeff Mitchell, a staff photographer with Getty Images. The company has expressed discomfort at the use of the image to deliver a political message.

As an alert Twitter user pointed out, Mr Farage’s poster showed a chilling similarity to Nazi footage of migrants “flooding” Europe’s cities.

This insidious appeal to people’s sense of insecurity is the most shameful example of emotional manipulation.

If campaigning propaganda like this had any influence on the murderous actions of a man who may be mentally unstable, then the Government should act immediately to reign in those who are, to quote Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, unashamedly “giving legitimisation to racism”.

Carolyn Taylor.
16 Gagiebank,
Wellbank,
Broughty Ferry.

 

A poisonous atmosphere

Sir, – Tragedy strikes down a politician who all sides recognise as someone who sought only to help people, whether they were here in the UK or elsewhere in our troubled world.

Yet other politicians with less noble ambitions have been dominating the public consciousness of late.

They cannot be blamed for the workings of a perpetrator’s troubled mind, but neither they, nor the divisive process of a referendum, have helped.

The atmosphere created by those who would wring power from discord has drawn out the worst in many.

Having lost one of the best examples of those who would serve us, those leading politicians who have become more celebrities than public servants, should reflect on what damage can be done through playing with exaggerated grievance.

Keith Howell.
White Moss,
West Linton.

 

Show respect to Leave voters

Sir, – I see Gordon Brown and even Angela Merkel are trying to use Jo Cox’s death as a tool to blacken the Leave campaign.

They are insinuating that the Leave people are insulting and critical of immigrants and their supporters.

I have never heard an important Leave supporter criticising immigrants.

They criticise the system which allows unlimited access and possibly allows European criminals to sneak into the UK.

Mr Brown should respect that distinction.

The Remain camp constantly accuse Leave supporters of racism and being anti-European and it is those accusations which stir up hatred.

Mr Brown should remember that in trying to get the Labour Party popular he said “British jobs for British people”.

RJ Soutar.
Camperdown Street,
Dundee.

 

Consistency of Mr Farage

Sir, – Nigel Farage has been campaigning to leave the corrupt EU for more than 20 years, since he was an early member of UKIP.

During that time he has been insulted, bullied, attacked, spat on, threatened and had his family threatened; enough to make anyone give up.

Like Robert Bruce, and many other great men in history, he has kept on doggedly pursuing his ambition to allow the people of Britain a voice in their future, to be allowed a voice over whether or not we continue living in a member state of the European Union or restore the supremacy of Westminster.

George A Cormack.
McLauchlan Rise,
Aberdour.

 

Unfair treatment of Cliff Richard

Sir, – Sir Cliff Richard joins the list of people who have been accused of historic sex offences but have had the charges dropped (June 17).

He suffered nearly two years of anguish before being told that there was “insufficient evidence to prosecute”.

No wonder he complained that he was “hung out like live bait”.

The term “insufficient evidence” implies that the police have some evidence but not enough to charge the suspect and leaves some thinking there is no smoke without fire.

The more accurate term “no evidence to justify prosecution” should be used. If prosecutors continue to use “insufficient evidence” then they should reveal any evidence they do have.

I suspect none.

Details of the raid on Sir Cliff’s home were leaked to the BBC who filmed the raid. This was trial by media, assisted by South Yorkshire Police, the same force which for years ignored complaints that children were being abused in Rotherham.

Clark Cross.
138 Springfield Road,
Linlithgow.

 

Rise above fear tactics

Sir, – I was unconvinced by the Scottish Government White Paper on independence but it was an attempt to answer the many questions raised by the prospect of leaving the UK.

Nothing comparable has come from those wanting us to leave the EU, just bogus statistics, racial negativity and an unlikely future as Europe’s offshore, deregulated free-trade zone.

At the end of this dismal contest, chillingly memorable for the murder of a young MP, we have a decision to take.

As the last stop before the wastes of the North Atlantic we are a nation of immigrants and I hope their descendants will rise above Brexit’s racist fearmongering and vote to Remain.

Rev Dr John Cameron.
10 Howard Place,
St Andrews.

 

Brexit not cue for Scots poll

Sir, – As the prospect of EU exit looms, is Nicola Sturgeon trapped by her Brexit triggers indyref2 rhetoric, if Scotland votes Remain?

SNP/pro-independence support across Scotland is around 45%.

Polls tell us a third of SNP supporters are voting Leave and the rest Remain. So the predicted 60 to 65% in favour of Remain in Scotland comprises equally or more pro-union supporters than separatists.

Opinion polls show support for an independent Scotland to be a fraction higher if Brexit materialises though rarely exceeds 50%. For the many No voters voting Remain (plus those backing Leave) staying in the UK is more important than the EU. So a majority for Remain is not a majority for separatism.

Martin Redfern.
4 Royal Circus,
Edinburgh.

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