At random with Martin Laing 04.07.19

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Consistency is needed

I have a great deal of sympathy for the organisers of Oban Live being upset at the waiving of charges for the recent independence march in Oban to rally at Mossfield stadium.

This was thrown into sharper relief in the light of next year’s two-day music festival being scrapped because of the condition of Mossfield and lack of support from Argyll and Bute Council.

In a recent edition of The Oban Times Daniel Gillespie, managing and artistic director for Oban Live, called for improvements to Mossfield and said: ‘It is also highly concerning that the terms and conditions of hire are not consistent across all events and groups – this is another aspect that needs to be addressed and clarified by Argyll and Bute Council.’

Indeed.

However, I also understand the necessity of allowing the All Under One Banner group, which organised the march and rally, to use Mossfield given the size of the demonstration and the priority given to ensuring public safety.

Given the political implications, it is imperative that hiring Mossfield, or any other council facility, is done on a fair and consistent basis. Charging one group while providing Mossfield free for another is simply not good enough.

Common sense prevails

I was pleased to hear about the summit last week between BID4Oban and the council to discuss the issue of A-boards in the town.

Readers will recall the council removed all the A-boards earlier this year on the ground of public safety, especially for people with mobility or visual problems.

Many of the A-boards have reappeared and seem to be back in place without a problem. They are very important for some of the businesses in locations away from George Street and are helpful for visitors to find their way around the town.

However, I am pleased the good people at BID4Oban and the council seem to have arrived at a suitable solution.

What do you think?

Write to me at mlaing@obantimes.co.uk or The Oban Times, Crannog Lane, Oban, PA34 4HB, or call 01631 568021.