Sunday, 27 September 2015

Ring o the loch path!

Photo 01 - view from the boat house yesterday.

Ring o the loch path!

You will no doubt have noticed that last week we did not mention this monstrous development that has brought a new level of chaos to the area. Now that was not because all is well for it is not, indeed the situation is becoming increasingly more chaotic than ever! One has to wonder at the orienteering skills of some walkers many of whom I feel would get lost if they were clamped on to rails!

We are currently being assailed on four fronts, the first is the path next to the Rodono boundary which we keep to allow vehicles to come down to the shoreline. This is an area with long grass and bracken with no signs whatsoever of being a path yet they come wandering through! The second are is where the digger scraped a path in error and is blocked off with posts and branches and still they clamber over and into our boat mooring area!

The third area is our steps down to our boat house, they blunder through in spite of our signs saying “angling traffic only” and look a trifle lost when reaching our boathouse! The final area is along the shoreline where the path moves up to the grass verge. We have erected a sign pointing walkers up to the grass verge and even installed a wall of cut branches to try and stop walkers coming through our work area. But still they try and climb over the wall of branches!

This is becoming an increasingly tedious affair and is now costing us money and time we would rather spend fishing! We do not object to walkers but we do take umbrage at being invaded on a regular basis. We will now rope off the two areas between Rodono and our boathouse and install higher and deeper barriers to stop these people. Our steps will now be chained off to double the area we originally intended! The shoreline part will be further reinforced with branches and rope!

This is an area of beauty as well as being an SSSI we should not have to organise our boat house in the manner of a castle under siege but quite frankly that is what we are having to do! Yesterday we caught 7 youngsters trying to climb down to our boat mooring area because they thought this was the official walkway!  Two couples were noted walking along the road dodging cars and bikes from Kirkstead to Rodono because they thought that was the route! Last week the sound of car horns drew my attention as a group wandered along the area between our boat house to Rodono two abreast, a disaster waiting to happen!

What we have drawn from these events are that the newly constructed (loose interpretation of the word) path is grossly unfit for purpose! The constant switching from hillside to roadside verge to shoreline is a confusing puzzle patently beyond the comprehension of many walkers. The signage directing walkers is utterly inadequate demonstrated by random walkers appearing almost anywhere! The route directing walkers on to the roadside verge at several points is at the very least dangerous, demonstrating a lack of thought and planning and an urgent rethink is required before someone is badly injured! Walkers are at fault being somewhat clueless but the organisers of this farce must bear the largest part of the blame.

On speaking to walkers over the last few weeks they are absolutely astounded that this excuse for a walk required monies near to the £35,000 granted for the project with quotes like “when will it be finished” “ when will the bottoming be put down” and “this is the most confusing walk I have ever done”! What was viewed over the last few weeks as being something of a joke is now morphing into something rather more serious! Someone needs to get this sorted pronto!

Photo 02 signpost and even more area to be chained off next week.

Booking our boats!
We get a lot of feedback regarding the hiring of our boats and every now and then we need to clarify certain aspects of that process. The first thing to remember is that we are a club therefore we must give our club members the first crack at our boats. What that means is if a visitor applies for a boat at the same time as a visitor the club member will be allocated hat boat.

However once a boat is booked and the loch keeper has confirmed that booking, then that boat remains unavailable for general hire. When booking a boat you must specify what type of boat you require either 14ft Lomond or 16ft Arran. Failure to be specific could result in you hiring a boat that is unsuitable for your needs. An example would be a single angler looking for a boat to row. A Lomond is ideal whilst the sheer dimensions and weight of the Arran would make the trip a higher end  endurance test not likely to enhance your experience.

You must also be specific as to the day and time you wish to hire that boat. Saying you want a boat on Friday but being non specific as to the time or type of boat is completely unacceptable!  Our club requires revenue to survive and a scenario as above means we may miss out on a hire holding the boat for an angler who may not turn up until the evening.

So please be specific when you are booking a boat as to type and time of hire it makes life easier all round, it is after all only common courtesy.

Anglers are reminded that our AGM takes place in the Tibbie Shiels Inn on the 21st of October commencing at 7.00pm. Topics already received so far are the number of rods allowed to be fished by an angler. The amount of bank space covered by some anglers when fishing four rods. Two other proposals are being submitted but there is still time to send in a proposal or come along on the night.

 The wider world in my view!

As I said!

Yes last week I gave my views the inequalities created by bumbling politicians and indeed the system of extreme capitalism that now blights our lives. Its always good to cite examples and lo and behold some crackers appeared this week showing the dangers of persevering with a failed and discredited system.

Volkswagen the worlds largest car maker although not for much longer methinks this week admitted placing computer software in their diesel cars that could detect when the car was being subjected to testing and in such a case modify the engine management system to give improved results. It’s very clever stuff and shows great ingenuity, more importantly it also shows however flagrant misrepresentation of their product!
The software installed was to deceive testing body’s showing their diesel cars had much better emissions results and mpg than they did in fact have under normal conditions! So here we have a much respected company at the top of their game cheating to sell more cars! The question is why they felt the need to cheat!

It’s really quite simple and the answer is tied in to the system that governs our lives that of extreme capitalism and the pursuit of profit! The company whose aim was more and more profit felt obliged to attain this at any cost! Industry standards, accepted business rules and loyalty towards customers were all abandoned in favour of greed!
It’s as simple as that; profit must be pursued at any cost this is rampant capitalism at its worst! Customers become a second rate consideration and the same for the general public and the environment! For these companies greed, i.e. the quest for capital is all consuming like the like the infectious disease inflicted on the UK public by Butcher Thatcher!

In the next few weeks we will see the full extent of wrongdoing in the industry and the likelihood is that the picture will not be a pleasing one! Volkswagen has treated their customers and the general public in an utterly disgraceful fashion! Incidentally it was interesting to note that the chief executive who resigned was given a £23 million pay off deal, try and figure that one out! The only thing that is certain is that Volkswagen customers funded that deal and you wonder why cars are so expensive! Our washed up capitalist system has now reached its end and a new fairer way of living must be implemented! Volkswagen abandoned all accepted business protocols, took a big risk placing the general public in jeopardy, the strategy failed and Volkswagen must now rightly pay a very heavy price indeed!

Pork anyone!

You could not have missed the revelations laid bare by Lord Ashcroft and Isabel Oakshott pertaining to Lord Snooty our esteemed leader. Whilst most of us in our youth would nick a parking cone and transport it into someones garden whilst heavily inebriated it seems Lord Snooty preferred to stick a private part into a pigs head before dinner!

I’m not in the least surprised by the antics of the Bullingdon boys they are a particularly odd bunch of people suitable only for joining the Conservative party! Ashcroft also alleges that Lord Snooty used to dabble in cocaine and weed prior to smashing up restaurants a favourite hobby of the Bullingdon boys!  The man who now expects to be taken seriously as our Prime Minister exposed as a perverted druggy, it doesn’t get much worse! Yet again the UK is ridiculed on the world’s stage, roll on independence!

Sunday, 20 September 2015

The first choice!

Photo 01 - Autumn flowers brightening our mood!

The first choice!

Every now and then we come across someone oblivious to the fact that a valid fishing permit is required to fish on the lochs. A day permit costs only £8.00 and for that you are allowed to fish for 24hrs which is extremely good value. On the way home yesterday we noticed a banner advertising a years golf club membership and the cost_ £399.00 season. The permit allows you to fish up to 4 rods but remember do not attempt to try and take the Mickey by purchasing one permit and then giving the rods to your pals who arrive 30 minutes later for you will be found out and there will be consequences!

There are a number of outlets where you may purchase your permits and all are recommended by us but the first choice must always be from our loch keeper! Mr Xxxxx our loch keeper comes with a wealth of knowledge on how to fish the loch and the best places to set up base depending on your requirements. Some methods work best at certain times of the year and you can unlock this information and much more by engaging with Mr Xxxxx.

In effect Mr Xxxxx works for us looking after all aspects of loch life and goings on. Naturally Mr Xxxxx earns a percentage of all permits sold as do all our other sellers but because we are not wealthy in monetary terms and let’s face it not many of us are under the clueless Tories we like him to earn as much as possible by means of permit sales as he carries out much work for us and we do not generate the revenue required to pay him anything like a living wage!

In the pursuit of the fish in our lochs local knowledge is essential and this can only be had by obtaining your permits from Mr Xxxxx. Now it’s not difficult in spite of the poor mobile phone coverage. All you need to do is phone 07724523777 and if there is no answer leave a message.  Mr Xxxxx will return your call once in an area with mobile coverage.
If however you have been unsuccessful in contacting Mr Xxxxx please do use our other outlets. However make our loch keeper your first choice! 

Remember if you require a boat/engine boat you can only do this through Mr Xxxxx. 

Club AGM

With the date of our meeting now on the horizon we invite members to come forward with any suggestions or proposals they may have. It is the easiest way of getting your point over and remember you will be most welcome! Oh yes in the past we have cleared out Muppets, clowns and bullies but these days most of the brush has been cut and all is well at the loch. So get pen to paper and let us know your thoughts or/and come along on the night
AGM 21st October Tibbie Shiels Inn commencing 19.00hrs

Photo 02 - Landed yesterday a Ladybird?

The wider world in my view!

An end to the selfish greed culture!

In political terms it’s been a very good week perhaps not so much for Lord Snooty and his band of Diddys, but certainly for Labour in particular Jeremy Corbyn it has been a busy and intense week! Corbyn has begun piecing together his policies and there is now a clear demarcation line between Labour and the Tories. This is a most welcome development as previously policy from all parties was simply centre right leaning to far right!

For the first time in a long time Labour policy is actually focused on poor people and those who from no fault of their own find themselves living on the breadline which is exactly how it should be.  Meantime Lord Snooty and his pals quaff champagne and devour lobster tails without a care in the world! Alas with Corbyn’s emphatic election comes a serious downside for England and Wales and it is a chilling prospect, that of a Tory Government in perpetuity!

However other than that I won’t delve into the electability of Corbyn’s administration as by that time we in Scotland will thankfully be an independent country and for me and the poor of the country the quicker the better! It is time to act as human beings to care for our fellow man and dispense with the Thatcherite concept of grab all you can, no matter the cost that has blighted our society!

What is clear is that young people in England and Wales are following in the footsteps of the young Scots and getting involved in politics for the first time and that can only be a good thing. The mass movement behind Corbyn is akin to the unstoppable drive by Scots for independence. These youngsters are waking up to the fact that as the fifth richest nation (no prizes for guessing who has this wealth) we should all be enjoying a better standard of living and under Lord Snooty and his like it is not so nor is it likely!
These youngsters are too young to have been corrupted by the dogma of greed spouted by Butcher Thatcher, and in many cases against the wishes of their parents are seeking an end to the rich/poor divide! They are rightly casting off the cloak of selfishness, looking to the plight of others and see that change is urgently needed and indeed inevitable! Westminster for the likes of my generation was largely untouchable, it is now not so! Mass bungling, Omnishambles budgets, and the most bizarre ideas of reform developed to save millions and actually have cost us hundreds of millions to make the service being reformed worse have led to the unmasking of these blundering fools! Who would view the interventions in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya as successful campaigns? No one with any degree of rationality would, yet Lord Snooty hails them as hugely successful!

The clowns that play with our lives are not experts; they are just posh boys with large bank balances filling up their days with horrific consequences for the working classes! Whether by design or crass incompetence (most likely both) they are widening the divide intent on pushing the working classes into the gutter! Their recent attack on working tax credits have shown that ordinary families could lose up to £3000/year and of course it is the people at the bottom of the ladder that suffer as usual. When independent experts such as the IFS come out in droves to support this fact you know something is seriously wrong!

They also seek to further attack the working man by making Trades Unions impotent becoming handmaiden organisations akin to the toothless Royal College of Nursing, a more insipid organisation you could not find! They want to wrest the power and put it fully in the hands of the capitalist owners recreating Victorian Britain! Yes the goons are intent on saving money but they are saving that money on the backs of poor people!

In one way I feel for the posh boys as they desperately cling on to the last vestiges of rampant capitalism as the whole system implodes! The working classes are fed up of the scandalous wages paid to management executives, bankers and those who were born with silver in their mouths! People who do not have to stop and think if they can afford the latest Ferrari or diamond encrusted I phone, they simply buy it! At the other end of the spectrum poor people crowd the pound shops looking to find something to put on the table! Surely no thinking rational human being can be content with such a situation!

There is no question our current society is corrupt, it has reached a natural end. Poverty is rife and at the other end of the spectrum extravagance knows no limits! The posh boys have been busy creating part time dead end jobs which do not allow people to survive requiring top up benefits. Of course they have now withdrawn these benefits and these people are left floundering!

The problem has always been the English middle classes with their wad of shares, three bedroom semis and two cars on the drive! Compassion, empathy and care are omitted from their dictionaries as they look down from their ivory towers seeing only self interest and the quest for more wealth at any cost! The greed race is sickening in the extreme! Quite simply this is why we in Scotland must go our separate way and choose a path that leads to fairness and equity!

A brutal clueless Tory government being elected with a majority, it should make the whole country cower in shame! Oh they say they need to balance the books, but you only need to look to the USA to see that the books can be balanced by selective investment something our Scottish government will do once independence is achieved in the near future! Doing it this way does not increase the numbers of poor people which the Tories seem to excel at! They have always been coined as the “nasty party” they are living up to their name! The people of Scotland have given their judgement on the current Tory government, that judgement is that the administration is illegitimate! That being the case we must dispense with them forthwith and become an independent country as a matter of urgency!

We cannot be sure at this time what will emerge from Corbyn’s cauldron but you can bet on one thing. His policies will seek to redress the imbalance created by successive Westminster governments. For us in Scotland however the arrival of Corbyn has 5 years too late! It is quite likely in the next few years there will be civil unrest and protest marches become the norm. It looks likely our Scottish government will not implement the draconian trade union reforms and this will likely be one of the factors (there are many) leading to the final referendum that sees us cast adrift from the numbskulls that populate Westminster!

I always equate the plight of the poor in this country with the Bosch’s attempt to subdue the USSR during the Second World War! They raped, pillaged, murdered and bombed their way forward to Stalingrad pushing the Soviets ever backward towards Siberia! But like a coiled spring under extreme pressure a point was reached where the spring could not be compressed any further. The Soviets who could not be pushed any further back burst forth and unleashed on the Bosch an apocalyptic torrent of hellfire the likes of which had never seen before!

So it will be in this country! I would urge all readers who actually care about the plight of your fellow man (that would exclude most Tories!) to think seriously about getting involved in such civil disobedience campaigns, for we cannot go on the way we are doing at present! Lord Snooty is on the verge of witnessing the breakup of the UK, financial collapse and outbursts of civil unrest!

To try and continue on the road to extreme capitalism is a wasted endeavour and doing nothing maintaining the status quo marks us down as mere animals! It is the qualities such as compassion and caring for others that set us apart from the animal kingdom and appear to be disappearing in this wretched capitalist society! There is no, and can be no valid reason for people to be living in abject poverty in this country. There is more than enough wealth in our country to satisfy our need but not our greed! 

Change via Westminster is a long way in the future if it ever happens, therefore to achieve a society with fairness and equity as the guiding principle we must reorient ourselves. To end the selfish greed culture independence is the only option for the people of Scotland!

Sunday, 13 September 2015

The last mile!

Photo 01 - Our new fish way working well!

The last mile!

Yes the Brown Trout season which seems as though it had just started is now nearing its end. The Trout will have become bigger, wiser and ever more resourceful having gotten through the most part of the season. For most the season ends at the end of the month but we hang on an extra week until the legal end of the season.

By no means has this been a great year for those seeking our wily Trout with only occasional catches worthy of comment. Elliot Fraser is ahead with regard to our heavy Trout cup with a rather diminutive 1 lb 4oz Brownie caught as part of a very good four fish bag last week. So the door is open for anyone to land a goodie and snatch the cup!

Historically many of the bigger Brownies caught towards the end of the season show that fry play a major part of the Trout’s diet as they feed heavily to pack on weight for the impending spawning rituals.  It would then be a wise angler that chooses attractor patterns and those which seek to imitate Perch fry, minnows and sticklebacks!

Sport on top of the water has not been good this year as the gloomy cool weather subdued prolific fly life making any sport available under the surface. With 4 weeks left the astute angler will be looking at the weekly forecasts on “Countryfile” and planning their days to suit any reasonable conditions that may appear.

We are now in the last mile of the 2015 season and the honours are there for the taking go and thrash the water into a foam. Tune in to "Countryfile"on Sunday night and plan a few days (remember and look for a bit of wind) and see if you can tempt one of our elusive Goliath Trout!
PS - Stevie had one to the net last week est 3.0lbs  but like a true sportsman he knocked it off! Respect!

Photo 02 - £30.00 or £3.98 see below.

The accursed path!

No doubt due to the horrific weather yesterday walker numbers were nonexistent  giving us a well earned break from having to redirect confused walkers who could not deduce whether they should be on the roadside, lochside or up on a hillside!  Following the absolute pasting we have endured over the last few weeks we now have our signs erected leaving walkers in no doubt whatsoever about where they should be walking! 

At last a week of peace and the number of walkers will diminish as the colder weather barges in!  However after to speaking with a good number of walkers the numbers coming will drop dramatically due to word getting around about the dire quality of the design and construction!

It’s a great shame because if adequate time was taken and the relevant individuals were consulted this could actually have been a good walk! As always with these schemes it happens at the behest of a remote opinionated busybody who has no concept of inclusion or cooperation! Another complete waste of time and money!

The wider world in my view!

Who would have thought it!

I was glued to the radio between eleven and twelve yesterday listening to the results of the leadership elections in the Labour party! The 500-1 outsider Jeremy Corbyn vanquished all before him claiming almost 60% of the votes cast. He was the joke candidate but a joke candidate with policies that struck a note with those who seek equality, those who seek an administration with compassion, those who want to get rid of the rich poor divide.

People voted to see essential industries taken back into public ownership, to see a restoration of trade’s union rights to see refugees from war torn countries treated with respect and dignity! At last a political leader who embraces the working class values that saw the formation of the NHS and the social security system! A leader who has a vision and clearly set out policies, a leader who is not just another shade of grey that has been the model of politics for the last thirty years!

The new outlook from the Labour party will see a return to the equal dissemination of wealth sending greedy bankers overseas to escape being taxed to the hilt and good riddance to them! Managing directors who draw absolutely ridiculous amounts of money and pay the workers who make this money peanuts better look out because the left leaning Corbyn is on your trail!

There will be much turmoil and a few resignations undoubtedly from Labour MPs who are in fact Tories and the quicker they go the better! Since Blair the Labour party has become increasingly Torified  to such an extent you could not get a Rizzla paper between them!

A new breed of voter is emerging with the young of the country; they are fed up of seeing gross inequality from increasing numbers of people having to use food banks to bankers making up to ten million in bonuses on top of their already scandalous wages! These young people can see the wealth of the country yet cannot see how this results in so many poor people forced to live on handouts!

This is a new dawn for Great Britain, like the SNP have done for Scotland Corbyn can do for the rest of the UK . He has without doubt an unequivocal mandate for change. Middle England will not be impressed by his election for he puts at risk their lifestyle built on Butcher Thatcher greed! The witch may be gone but depressingly, her legacy of greed at any cost lives on!  We can only brave the melee which will undoubtedly ensue but for the first time in a long time there is hope for the working classes of the United Kingdom!

The young in Scotland have now secured the future independence of our country, the young in the rest of the UK are now waking up to the fact that the status quo  with Lord Snooty et al is no longer an option! The electorate now have a choice, fairness and equity or the same old dreary bungling and gross inequality!

For those who cannot figure it out!

The accursed path mentioned above led me to a great example of just why the High street is dying and why it is beyond resuscitation! The recent trespassing on to our site forced us to seek out signage to suit our needs. As you can see the wordage required was not excessive yet when I went to a local vendor to get a price he quoted £30.00 for the lot.

I thought that this was a bit steep for so few words and the fact that I would have to come back the next day to pick them up more or less did for him! I went on to e bay and found a seller who would do the whole lot for £3.98 including postage and that was 1st class letter post!
As was stated the letter arrived the next day and I duly applied the lettering to Aluminium back plates and it was job done! Now it is alright (indeed noble) to talk about supporting your local shopkeepers but when you come across massive differences in price like I found this week how can shopping locally be justified? 

Consumers have a simple choice, either go down to a local vendor and pay full whack and more and get your items whenever or order from the comfort of your sofa and receive the goods the next day and end up significantly better off!
Our economy is a good way off from being sorted by the bungling Tories and sensible families look to save as much as they can when purchasing products to make their money go further in these manufactured austere times! 

How can the High Street survive when faced with such opposition, I will tell you it cannot! Whether it be due to greedy shopkeepers, high rates, low buying power or whatever reason the High Street cannot compete with the internet seller! It’s high time the bunglers on the Regional Council accepted this and put an end to the silly schemes which cost a lot and achieve nothing in terms of rejuvenating these streets!

It would be far better if more constructive thinking was allowed to flourish such as in Galashiels issuing a compulsory purchase order on all the High Street properties and the turning them into much needed social housing! Those businesses who feel they can survive a few more years should be relocated to Channel Street or Bank Street for there are many empty premises that need filling.

The reality however is that the contraction in High Street outlets will continue unabated and it will be so for the above reason! In every aspect of life there comes a time when one must face up to reality, for the High Street in Galashiels indeed the majority of towns that time is now!

Sunday, 6 September 2015

Communication is vital!

Photo 01 - Canoeists & swimmers right over my baits!

Communication is vital!

I was fishing yesterday morning when a high powered boat came close by and planted an inflatable buoy near the bottom of the loch. I thought nothing of it and continued fishing only to see a canoe crossing my lines with a swimmer abreast of the canoe and then I realised that it could be the long distance swimmers who come every year to brave the worst that st Mary's can throw at them.

I shouted across to the speedboat and they came over and I asked exactly what was going on?  As I suspected it was the annual event of the long distance swimmers. Now we do not object to this kind of activity on the loch as there is room enough for all to enjoy their sport without impinging on others.

However as with the now infamous path the organisers neglected to consult with us leading to an utter shambles that resulted in my days fishing terminating at 13.00hrs. We are probably the principal loch users and events such as this can and indeed did affect our sport.

I tracked down the organisers and told them of the day’s events that led to my fishing being abruptly terminated. They were most apologetic as indeed they should be. We have now informed them that we must be contacted prior to this event and we have stated we will only agree to the swim going ahead next year if the following conditions are met.

(1) Swimmers and accompanying craft must remain at least 100 metres from the loch edge on whichever bank they are swimming.
(2) Rescue craft must travel at low speed emergencies excepted in order to avoid creating a huge wake that can catch anglers especially wading anglers.
(3) We are contacted at least 1 month prior to the event taking place and the conditions are agreed before the event.

Now on point (3) I have since heard that some anglers at the top of the loch watched in disbelief as some people on a boat came in to their fishing area and placed a huge inflatable yellow buoy bang in front of them thereby terminating their fishing! Now I only heard of this towards the end of the day for if I had known about this I would have taken one of our boats and engines headed up to the area and cut the rope anchoring the buoy! A group of strangers coming on to the loch where we pay to lease the fishing and cutting off our sport without a word to us, it won’t do!

The organisers agreed they had not acted properly and would seek to redress this in the future. It was an unnecessary farce that could have been avoided! Our casualties numbering five in all who had their days fishing abruptly ended! We look forward to welcoming the swimmers back to the loch and can but admire their steely resolve in undertaking a challenge that would be beyond most of us! I saw one unfortunate lady draped in a blanket being led back to base absolutely juddering with cold, yes the loch can be a very inhospitable place!

Again the accursed circular path has blighted our anglers at the boathouse with 5 walkers attempting to come down our steps and through our work/launch area! We can put up with this no longer and are going to chain off the steps with a sign saying “angling traffic only” although other more colourful phrases have been suggested! We hope this will ease the bedlam caused by this construction if you could call it that and ease the troubled minds of those fishing and working around the boathouse area! All this carry on simply because external parties did not communicate with us and we are after all one of the principal loch users!

Photo 02 - Last week a woman refused to go down here. Can you blame her!

The wider world in my view!

Embarrassed to be British!

It’s not the first time under the Tories that I have felt repulsed at the arrogant uncaring and despicable attitude of those who claim to be our government! The attitude of these diddy’s is of course well known, characterised by the way they seek to punish the unfortunates in our society and line the pockets of those who have too much money!
Lord Snooty was adamant that there would be no change in policy regarding the taking in of refugees from the Syrian crisis. The crisis of course was partly started by the British government poking their noses in where it was neither required nor wanted! It’s funny how a single image can force governments into massive U turns and indeed not for the first time that is exactly where Lord Snooty found himself! A damned shame that it took the image of a dead 3 year old to spur them to as it turns out limited action!

We live in a country where 2% of the population own 95% of the wealth and it is unchallengeable to expect those with such vast wealth to contribute to the relief of suffering of these refugees fleeing a murderous situation in their homeland. It was reported that the sight of the lifeless 3 year old being carried up the beach touched the heartstrings of cold blooded Lord Snooty! Still however he would not bow to the public’s wish to take in some of these people.

However as an online petition gathered near half a million signatures Lord Snooty at last realised he would once again have to capitulate and U turn and accede to the wishes of the people! Germany, Italy, Greece and many others have for a long time been taking in significant numbers of refugees and giving sanctuary to these desperate people, only Britain stood out like a sore thumb refusing to help these unfortunate people.

Embarrassed on the worlds stage yet again we are increasingly seen as the hard hearted British who are incapable of showing any compassion! Germany has said it would be happy to accommodate around 800,000 refugees whilst Snooty talks about 15,000! Thanks however to our First Minister, Scotland managed to distance itself from the robotic Tories!

Yes Nicola Sturgeon stated publicly that the Scottish Government would happily take 1,000 (initially) of these people fleeing their homeland for peace and the right to live! It’s a small gesture but Scotland is but a small nation, hopefully one that will in the near future become an independent country! Unlike our brothers in England, Wales and Northern Ireland we may walk with our heads held high saying to the international community that we are proud to do our bit!

Many are now completely fed up of the heartless uncaring attitude that characterises the Tories. As a country we are completely out of step with our international brothers all of whom are more than willing to accommodate large numbers of these unfortunate people. It should of course be no surprise that the heartless Tory automatons programmed only to utter the words of getting the defecit down and punishing the poor show such an uncaring attitude in full view of the rest of the world!

We as Scots have shown a completely different attitude. We have shown a caring and compassionate concern for those who are worse off than ourselves. Even if it means our own standard of living is compromised we are urging that we take in these people! What a proud and worthy stance to take saying to the world that in spite of many problems on our own shores, we have compassion and we want these people to come!

I am indeed embarrassed to be seen as British following the pathetic posturing of Lord Snooty, but without reservation I am proud to be Scots as we shout to the world, yes Scotland does care!

The Waverly Line opens!

No one locally could be in any doubt that today sees the first of the scheduled running of the long awaited railway line. I remain unconvinced about the economic benefits that are bandied around but feel the current position of a single track line terminating at Tweedbank (where?) is but the first step into what should become once again the lifeline of the Scottish Borders!

Yes the line must be double tracked, operate goods and passenger services and go all the way to Carlisle! Only then can it be considered to be a success! The attractions of the Borders is somewhat limited with a few historical buildings granted some stunning scenery but not a lot else!

Anyone coming off the train at Tweedbank will find absolutely nothing of interest unless you like  sparsely populated 70s industrial estates! Similarly those disembarking at Galashiels will find nothing other than empty shops, and take a walk up the High Street all that can be seen are dilapidated shop fronts with paint flaking off and the sound of silence as tills fail to ring, a type of local Harlem! Indeed once the furore dies down I will be on the train but only to relive memories of the old Waverly line and thereafter I will be on it infrequently as will be the case for most people!

It is vital that the route is upgraded to double track and moves on to Carlisle, for if this does not happen the railway will flounder! What has happened up to now is but the start there is still a long way to go!