At random with Martin Laing week 03

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Town trash

Rubbish! It is a perennial problem, it seems.

I’ve lost count of the number of people who have approached me in recent weeks to complain about the amount of litter blighting Oban town centre.

Now, I’ll be the first to make allowances for the holiday period and the fact that our sterling council staff charged with clearing up behind us are entitled to their time off.

However, it is now more than two weeks since we all went back to work and the town is still awash with rubbish.

What’s more, I have been used to seeing the cleansing staff most mornings as I walk through the town on my way to work but I have not seen anyone operating the mechanical road sweeper or manually picking up litter for weeks now.

What is happening? Has Argyll and Bute Council suffered a loss of staff or have the workers been reassigned to other duties?

It might not be the tourist season but Oban is looking a mess and the residents deserve better.

Punish the vandals

We report this week on the disgusting behaviour of vandals who smashed a memorial bench on the Esplanade during the New Year celebrations.

What a miserably shocking thing to do.

David Hobbs had the bench installed as a tribute to his late wife, Amnuai. Mr Hobbs told us she would want him to forgive those who perpetrated such a heartless act.

I have to confess that I am much less inclined to take that point of view.

These people behaved appallingly and deserve to be punished. What they did was not only the cause of much upset, it was also a criminal act.

We are told the police in Oban are studying CCTV footage in an attempt to identify the culprits. I wish them well and would urge anyone who has any information to pass it on to the authorities. I hope these vandals are jailed.

And I give credit to Gael Force Fusion, who repaired it for free.

What do you think?

Write to me at or The Oban Times, Crannog Lane, Oban, PA34 4HB, or call 01631 568021.