Gazette Letters: 29-1-15

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lost business

We run a small Bed and Breakfast on the West side and we’ve had our first cancellation!

‘Hi. I am very sorry but I am going to cancel my May 30 booking. Given the uncertainties about the ferry from Ullapool in that period, I have changed my plans to make a sailing from Uig instead, and therefore won’t be coming to Lewis at all. I am sorry for any inconvenience at the change of plans.

Joan Hill’

Oh dear!

Jenny and Murdo Morrison

Ghinda Bed and Breakfast


Street Pastors are naive,

I see from your pages that Stornoway now boasts its own contingent of street pastors (Gazette 22.1.15), and it may be of interest that a similar squad have been operating in the Highland Capital for some time.

I tend to regard them as well-meaning individuals, though more than a touch naive. They go around the city at weekend nights, seeking those whom they regard as vulnerable, cosseting them in blankets if perchance the night has a chill to it, and the taxi queue at some God-less hour is slow moving.

They distribute flip-flops to damsels whose high-heeled shoes may cause them some discomfort as they make their unsteady way from pub to pub.

The street pastors have it all wrong. Those the worse for drink should spend a night in the cells, then they’d think twice before repeating the performance the following weekend.

Those taken to hospital A/E units with alcohol-related issues should be billed, and billed substantially, for any treatment they receive from the NHS.

Keith Fernie


storm heroes hailed

Can I take the opportunity to record my sincere thanks to everyone locally who played a part in the huge effort to restore electricity supplies and provide support to our customers during the sustained hurricane force storms that struck our area earlier this month.

Our team could not have responded so effectively to a weather event on this scale without the contribution of local businesses and their staff, making extra equipment and resources available - from local contractors to Annie Delin and the team at Isles FM who helped get information out to our customers.

Local accommodation providers opened their doors and provided hot food at all hours to staff teams from across the country as they worked with us from first light, long into the night. Council, NHS and emergency service professionals all worked around the clock too - to get help to wherever it was needed through some atrocious conditions.

Above all, I would like to thank our customers all over the Highlands and Islands for their patience and kindness while our staff battled with the weather.

I have heard so many stories of hot drinks being brought out to teams while they worked. Countless others checked that older or vulnerable neighbours were able to keep safe and warm.

Our local staff are hugely proud to be part of the strong communities that we serve.

The feedback we get from our customers is a huge encouragement as we seek to improve what we do for the next time the storm clouds gather and gale force winds blow.

Kevin Stewart

Western Isles Manager, Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution

Battery Point,


Beating bowel cancer

Everyone at Beating Bowel Cancer would like to thank all those who took part in or supported our Decembeard fundraising campaign last month.

We are delighted to announce that we have reached our target of £250,000, which will help us to support people with bowel cancer and their families and to raise awareness of the disease, its symptoms and the need for early diagnosis.

The aim of the campaign, which asks men to ditch their razors and grow a beard throughout December, is to break down the stigma of talking about bowel cancer, which is the UK’s second biggest cancer killer. Over a hundred people are diagnosed with bowel cancer every day, yet over 90% of cases can be treated successfully if caught early. So it’s vital that people become more aware of the symptoms so they can act quickly.

Decembeard is a fun way for individuals or teams to raise funds and help to increase awareness of the disease. It’s easy to do and thousands signed up for it this year. We’d like to thank every one of them for their support.

If anyone has any queries or concerns about bowel cancer, there’s lots of information and advice on our website or they can call our Nurse Helpline on 020 8973 0011.

Mark Flannagan


Beating Bowel Cancer

Harlequin House

Annie dow Heroisim Award

I write to express my thanks to all those so far who have helped to raise awareness of The Annie Dow Heroism Award (TADHA) and to encourage anyone who knows of anyone that may be eligible to make sure they nominate them by 31st of January.

TADHA is an exciting new annual award for young people under the age of 30 in Scotland with additional support needs, who have acted with true heroism.

It takes its inspiration from Annie Dow, a young woman who has additional support needs who saved the lives of her mother, father, family friend and dog when she bravely raised the alarm after discovering a fire in the middle of the night which destroyed her home.

One overall TADHA winner will receive a cash prize of £2,500 and a specially commissioned TADHA trophy at a specially convened awards ceremony at Edinburgh’s Summerhall on 19th of March. Two runners up will also receive £500 each.

I urge that anyone who knows a young person with additional support needs who has acted both heroically and inspirationally, nominates them for this fantastic prize.

Information can be found at

Sophie Dow

The Annie Dow Heroism Award