Arran opinion

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For anyone that has lived and worked on Arran, even for the shortest of time, there is a clear understanding that island life comes with its own set of unique challenges and circumstances, most of which we can all agree with, and which are partly the reason why so many people aspire to live and work here.

It would not be unfair to say that, especially judging from our own letters page, Arran residents hold strong opinions on these matters and through their valuable contributions towards public discourse, are uncowed in airing them.

Especially so, with the arrival of the Scottish Cabinet and First Ministers visit earlier this week, where public discussion was invited at the meeting at Arran High School.

While it became evident that their exists a desire for status quo in certain aspects, so too is there a desire for improvement in many of the issues which were raised at the meeting, including transport, care for the young and elderly, poverty alleviation and improving public services.

It is heartening to see, particularly among the youth who were well represented at the meeting, that the issues affecting them, are the shared issues of the community.

The opportunity to air views and opinions, which are the cornerstone of any well functioning community, will hopefully go a long way towards Arran residents and political leaders in reaching a level of mutual understanding that can spur on the desired social and political change.

It is the varied opinions and many voices, joined together, that create a powerful and unified voice – as Arran so admirably displayed at the public meeting.