Gazette Letters 10.10.13

Tommy Stewart took this excellent picture of a rainbow over the Braighe, Lewis.
Tommy Stewart took this excellent picture of a rainbow over the Braighe, Lewis.


Concerning Air Source Heating Pumps - the Hebridean Housing Partnership boast that they have installed 400 of these.

My main concern privately renting a property which is semi detached from one

of these is the horrible and intrusive noise, which occurs frequently.

However, also perhaps a survey may indicate that the householders do not reap any great savings on their bills?

Solar panels – particularly for heating water – may actually make a significant difference to people’s ability to afford to heat their homes and the noise impact may be less.

Deborah Booth, Grimsay HS6 5HX

With a new analysis by the TaxPayers’ Alliance’s suggesting subsidies to ‘green’ generators will top £22 billion by 2020 - costing each British household an extra £425 over the next six years - we must be clear that the reason the fat-cat energy giants can reap such sums is because Ed Miliband gave them the tools to do so when he was Energy Secretary under Gordon Brown.

What utter hypocrisy that he now intends to freeze utility bills for 20 months if Labour wins the general election in 2015, while avoiding any pledge to unravel the very policy framework that drives price rises in the first place.

As Ofgem also warns of the increasing likelihood of blackouts in the near future due to an electricity supply crunch, it is worth remembering that the £22 billion we will have spent by 2020 - mostly on giant, industrial wind turbines - would build three state-of-the-art, third generation nuclear reactors, including full waste disposal and decommissioning costs.

Instead, we see turbine developers encouraged to build ever more costly, inefficient developments that will do nothing to cut CO2 emissions, all while spurred on by a toxic combination of Ed Miliband’s past mistakes and the SNP government’s own narrow-minded fixation on wind renewables.

What we’re left with is an energy policy that will neither deliver sufficient electricity to power Scotland sustainably, nor enough carbon reductions to tackle climate change.

Think about that as you open successive eye-wateringly inflated utility bills in the years ahead, though thanks to Mr Miliband it may be cheaper switch off the lights and do so by candlelight instead.

Struan Stevenson, MEP


There is no doubt that NATO countries would be more than delighted to carry out their twice yearly exercises in Scottish waters to the north of the Pentland Firth/Isle of Lewis in the Western Isles as they have done for decades should Scotland gain independence.

However,according to Defence Minister Philip Hammond an independent Scotland would be refused entry into NATO.

As he well knows this is a lot of scaremongering and codswallop. For Mr.Hammond to add that Scottish troops such as the Black Watch and Scots Guards being retained by the UK forces is beyond anybody’s comprehension!

Does he not understand that the UK forces would no longer exsist should Scotland gain independence.

Donald J.Morrison, Buckie AB56 4N


As cold weather approaches, we should be aware that wild animals may search for warmth and sustenance within our homes.

And, if they can get easy access and find sufficient food for the winter months, who could blame them?

Animal Aid would encourage people who do find a squirrel in their attic or a mouse in their kitchen not to panic and call in ‘pest’ controllers.

The traps and poisons they use can cause prolonged agony to animals and do nothing to solve the underlying reasons why that animal moved in.

Instead, we ask people who have an unwanted houseguest to take a few practical steps to encourage that animal to move on.

To that end, Animal Aid has produced a series of free fact sheets to help local residents deter birds, squirrels, foxes and rodents.

We also have a free report entitled Alternatives to Culling, which looks at the issues in greater detail. Please contact or call 01732 364546 to order your free fact sheets or report (please state if there is a specific species you require information about).

Kate Fowler

Animal Aid


Since my recent ‘Letter to the Editor’ about the H.M.S. Collingwood Association was kindly printed by the local newspapers across the country, the response has been terrific, but I have also received many requests for a bit more help … “Mike I saw your letter about H.M.S. Collingwood and I did my training there, but I am looking for my mates from the Electrical Mess of H.M.S. Rusty Bucket in the Far East in the 70s” and more.

Well, they need look no further than the Royal Naval Electrical Branch Association, where a specialist member of the committee, is collating all of the H.M Ships the members served on and their dates. That Association’s web site is a good place to start.

For details of the Royal Naval Electrical Branch Association, and the next Reunion, contact the Membership Secretary Brian Joy, 237a Tithe Farm Court, Alexandra Ave.,Harrow, Middlesex. HA2 9DN or email him on and please mention this newspaper.

Mike Crowe, Isle of Wight. PO36 8PG


New rules on parcel identification which came in to force on July 15th has the potential for chaos in the run up to Christmas.

With hundreds, if not thousands, of parcels due to delivered in the festive season our front page story is a timely warning for those who plan to shop online and have their goods delivered in time for the 25th.

If routine scanning cannot identify the contents of your parcel it will be sent off to Belfast where further investigations will take place to verify their contents.

It all seems a bit OTT given that the previous system worked safely enough for sending goods within the UK. It seems now the islands are being treated as separate from the rest of the UK because goods are delivered on flights.

Politicians are wading into the issue, however in the meantime if you want to be sure your goods arrive in time for Christmas post 2nd class (they are not delivered by flights).

Otherwise state clearly what is in your package on its exterior and you have a better chance of it not being diverted to Belfast.

If you would like to comment or write a letter on this topic or any other contact me at: