Arran Banner letters – week 19

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Second ferry meeting

Sir,

Since our first public meeting less than a month ago Arran Ferry Action Group have collated a wealth of feedback from ferry users, prioritised the issues about which you feel most strongly, met with various expert specialists seeking solutions, and with one of our local councillors to pass on your immediate concerns.

We have begun a database to catalogue valuable information for future reference and built a website (www.arranferries.scot ) to publicise our activities and seek further public input.

We have also distributed support forms around the island and to date have secured the support in name of several hundred Arran residents, together with a small number of visitors. The greater the proportion of the island’s population that sign up in support of the Arran Ferry Action Group, the more likely it is that our future proposals will be taken seriously by those in authority whom we lobby. To this end, will you please do your best to persuade your friends and family on the island to add their names to a sheet in local shops, or visit our website and register their support?

As a steering group, we have been busy behind the scenes preparing the way ahead for the Arran Ferry Action Group. To this end, with the help of a legal advisor, we have drawn up our constitution, which will be adopted at a second public meeting to be held at the Ormidale Pavilion on Wednesday May 15 at 7pm.

Following formal adoption of the constitution, a committee of no more than 10 will be elected. Members of the steering group will be standing, but if you wish to be considered for election to join them, please request a nomination form by e-mail to info@arranferries.scot

Yours,

Chris Attkins,
Interim secretary,
Arran Ferry Action Group.

RNLI thanks

Sir,

On behalf of the RLNI I would like to say a big thank-you to everyone who came along and supported our coffee morning on Saturday May 4. The magnificent sum of of £650 was raised for RLNI funds.

Thanks to Rosemary, Janet, Mary, Alison, Elaine, Trish, Douglas and all the bakers for their support.

Yours,

Elby Lang,

Arran branch, RNLI.

Photograph of the week

Twenty years ago this week, Scotland went to the polls to vote in the inaugural election for the reconvened Scottish Parliament. Arran’s MSP Kenneth Gibson was elected to it as a regional list member for Glasgow.

He was later returned to the parliament in 2007 when he won the constituency of Cunninghame North from Labour and has now served his constituents for 12 years.

Reflecting on this anniversary, Kenneth said: ‘It remains one of the greatest privileges of my life to have been elected to the first parliament and I am immensely proud of what we have achieved as a nation in 20 years of devolution.

‘Without the Scottish parliament, we would not have free prescriptions or free eye tests. Social and health care would not have been integrated and people would not receive free personal care.

‘Without the Scottish Parliament, we would not have free tuition fees or see record numbers of domiciled Scots going to university.

‘Without the Scottish parliament Arran would not have Road Equivalent Tariff.

‘Without the Scottish Parliament, the SNP government could not insulate Scots from the worst of Westminster Tory austerity.

‘I look forward to seeing what the Scottish Parliament will achieve in the next 20 years.’

As part of a year-long programme to mark the anniversary, there will be an event in Holyrood’s debating chamber on Saturday June 29, marking almost 20 years to the day since the parliament officially assumed its legal powers. As well as the chamber event, the parliament will later that day open its doors to the people of Scotland for an afternoon of celebration and commemoration.

The first official photograph of the new Scottish parliament members in 1999. NO_B19parli01