Madam, – I agree entirely with Ms Gireki (Letters, The Courier, August 21) there is no reason to assume a new railway will bring many more visitors to Leven.
It will still be far cheaper, quicker and easier to go by car (especially for families).
Elderly people can travel free on buses.
Most motorists visiting the area proceed along the coast and would not wish to transfer to a bus to do this.
An aim of the project is to make it easier for locals to work in Edinburgh. Since Markinch Station is under 20 minutes drive or bus ride away any time saved would be minuscule.
Since it would be uneconomic to run trains to/from Edinburgh passengers would need to change at Kirkcaldy anyway.
A season ticket for the city would cost more than £2,500 yearly. Local fares would add substantially to this.
Very few people earn enough to afford such amounts or wish to spend about 20 hours a week on travel. That can harm their health.
The construction cost of £70 million is around £6,000 per Levenmouth household, but the majority will not benefit from a new train service. This is a local, not national service. Fife Council should pay for it.
Other ways of spending available money should be examined.
What is needed are more good local jobs. There is no reason to think the railway will bring those.
Anyway there are already far too many “commuting” to Edinburgh.
The government is to spend vast amounts on new railways when councils are in severe financial straits, basic services are being decimated, roads are not properly maintained and most public toilets have been closed, with severe consequences for many and public health: £70 million would surely be enough to build several hundred new facilities.
15 Dunkeld Road,
Perth parking control contrast
Madam, – I write to urge motorists in Perth to consider carefully where they park in the city centre.
Running slightly late for an appointment, I was able to park on-street only after the help of a very friendly and attentive council parking warden.
The woman, working in heavy rain, could not have been more accommodating, making up the cost of a ticket from her own purse, thus enabling me to park and make my engagement on time.
Contrast that with the practices of a private operator of a nearby car park recently.
A wrongly-typed digit when inputting my registration number in their over-complicated payment machine has resulted in a threatening letter from a debt collection agency demanding £60, rising to £100 if not paid within a fortnight.
It is subject to appeal but I am not hopeful.
The contrasting attitudes succinctly sum up the attitudes of the two agencies controlling city centre parking in Perth.
One seems willing to help where needed and revenue goes straight back to the public purse.
The other is nothing more than a profiteering venture, sucking vast and undeserved sums from unsuspecting drivers.
Madam, – I have some difficulty in understanding the problems Walter Markham felt were wrong with education in the 1940s (Letters, The Courier, September 2).
At that time I was a pupil at Blairgowrie High School. My recollection is of good teachers, contentment with my education which has served me very well in my journey through life.
The qualifying examination in my opinion, served well to lead us toward education at a level best suited to ability.
In the 1980s when I attended parent evenings (at Buckhaven High School), the teachers, while undoubtedly capable, surprised me with their extremely casual clothing standard.
Jeans and open toe sandals did not seem appropriate.
Today the number of political interventions in expected standards of achievement and the absence of pupil behaviour control have reduced the education system to a point where recruitment of teachers has become difficult.
No doubt pupils of ability with a desire to make something of their lives will overcome these challenges.
A A Bullions.
Fire safety in schools
Madam, – Like many people, I was very surprised by the speed at which the fire at Woodmill High School in Dunfermline took hold.
Even with many fire appliance vehicles present, the inferno spread exceedingly rapidly which left me wondering whether any automatic sprinkler system had been built.
Surely Health and Safety regulations must be in place in any school building where students are taught by day and which might also house additional classes each evening.
All schools have regular “fire practices” and fire bells and I am therefore taken aback to think that a large contemporary school complex holding perhaps more than 1,000 staff and pupils exists without an automatic sprinkler system to douse a fire that probably started in a small area in one particular classroom. Wake up Fife Council!
Archibald A Lawrie.
5 Church Wynd,
Is Boris Johnson like Hitler?
Madam, – Boris Johnson’s threat to sack his own MPs is the latest sign that he wants to be a dictator, getting rid of people who oppose him.
He should be reminded they are the people’s representatives elected in a democracy.
This is reminiscent of Hitler’s behaviour in the 1930s. And our so-called head of state is agreeing with him.
Also is Michael Gove prepared to put his life on the line that there will be no shortage of food or medicine, as people who rely on them are going to?
I for one do not trust him. He is totally blinkered with the view that we must leave the EU no matter what. What a shambles.
93 Whyterose Terrace,
Lunatics running asylum
Madam, – In what has truly been a black week for democracy author George Eccles’ wise words provide a perfect encapsulation of Boris Johnson’s power grab: “We now have a prime minister who nobody elected, meeting an ageing monarch who nobody elected, jointly deciding to shut down everybody who was elected, in order to force a course of action nobody was invited to vote on.”
Succinct, wry and 100% apposite – the lunatics have indeed taken over the asylum.
23 Osborne Place,
Self-awareness bypass by FM?
Madam, – Nicola Sturgeon tells us on Radio Scotland: “Anyone who supports Brexit should ask themselves how they would feel if a government they didn’t support was trying to push through a policy they didn’t support”.
As a Remainer, I know how I feel when the Scottish Government I don’t support is trying to push through a policy I don’t support – leaving the UK (without a deal).