Letters to the Editor – 28.4.22

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Honouring the real VIPs

Iain Thornber’s piece about Mary Tipping with his reference to the opening ceremony for the new road from Lochailort to Kinicara brought back to my memory some details of the ceremony which might interest your readers and which shed light on the character of Mrs Cameron-Head.

A marquee had been erected on the lawn in front of the house of Inverailort and in it the large number of VIPs were given a buffet lunch and the usual speeches were heard. But at the same time, in the dining room inside the castle, all the men who had done the heavy construction work were set down by Mrs C-H to enjoy a slap-up three course feast. The VIPs were quite unaware of this arrangement!
Humphry Errington, Tobermory, Mull.

Summer dog problem

Can I bring to your attention what I have observed regarding dogs and their irresponsible owners.

I remember well the last two summers and the amount of dogs coming into town with holidaymakers. I’m sure if you were to sit down on the esplanade for a day you would count hundreds of dogs on both sides of the street.

The mess is out of control and it’s spoiling a nice walk along the esplanade. As an older person, this is a real problem. I’ve watched owners letting their dogs mess and they just walk on. Dog pee is just as bad as it marks the lovely granite promenade and is an eyesore.

I went on holiday up north a few years ago. Cafes, restaurants and hotels were all ‘dog friendly’. Dogs under tables, on seats, in passageways, dog hairs floating about food, whatever happened to hygeine? Dogs should not be allowed anywhere where food is served.

What about non-dog owners’ choice, what about what they want. I don’t want to see or smell a wet dog (smelly) when I’m eating. There seems to be no consideration for people who feel like me.

Out at Ganavan I watched in horror as an owner let two dogs sit on the picnic table while they ate (disgusting), then an unsuspecting family came along and ate off the same table.

This is a big problem and it has started again this April and no doubt it will be 10 times worse in the summer months.

Can I suggest more dog fouling signs, signs to keep dogs on short leads, someone to police the esplanade for dog fouling and long lead perpetrators.

When you walk the esplanade you have to run the gauntlet, dodging these dogs and their leads. How people with wheelchairs, prams and children manage, I don’t know. They must find it difficult to negotiate around all these dogs, and some dogs frighten children. I’ve seen myself and others having to step onto the road to get around these dogs, putting themselves in peril.

One day and oldie will trip on a dog lead. I nearly tripped over a dog lying on the pavement outside a restaurant while its owners drank coffee

I know many friends who feel as I do, this is a massive problem.

Name and address supplied

Destructive invasive daffodils

It is hard luck for a nature lover to have citizens who clear wildlife corridors by their own property.

Either for their view, or planting garden flowers, or a lawn and sitting area, or a row of the destructive invasive daffodils, or a personal ill thought out ego project.

I have sound reasons for objecting, and consider it a personal mental injury witnessing this hurrying extinction of the red alert species by destroying their safe habitat.

Unfortunately certain people, and those who carry clout, are unaware of this destruction.

They are also unaware of the distress to the truest nature lovers, those who know the value and worth of biodiversity.

Those habitats, full of life, cause no threat to livelihood or thoroughfare, and cause no structural damage, but nevertheless are described as eyesores by those who know better.
Name and address supplied

Help to find a friend

I am writing in the hope that you can help me find a friend. I recently had my computer and address book stolen, which has left me unable to contact a friend who lives in Oban. Her name is Louise MacLennan.

I would be very grateful if you were able to help me reconnect with them.
Bette Simpson, 4 Cardross House, Cardross Street, London, W6 0DW

Happy times in Lochailort

I would like to thank Iain Thornber for his well-researched, evocative eulogy on Lochailort’s Popular Postie – Mary Tipping – a couple of months ago.

The article brought back so many happy memories of the 1960s when our family spent the school holidays in Glenuig.
The house (the Ballachan) was delivered by ‘puffer’ and speedily assembled to become a much-loved home.

Our only link to the outside world was Ronald and the ferry – aptly named the Jacobite. It delivered supplies three times a week from Lochailort via Roshven to Glenuig and, of course, the Royal Mail faithfully delivered by Mary Tipping on her sturdy bicycle.
Her beaming smile, crushing hug and kiss were unforgettable – especially for Bruce and myself who were 12 and 13 years old!

Idyllic summers were spent cutting peat, making hay and checking the Glenuig burn for a salmon. Fish caught were always cut up and distributed in the glen. Ronald and Margaret Macdonald, Jimmy and Katie Mclean, and Jeannie Kennedy from the post office were always so kind to Bruce, my brother, myself and the whole family.

Mrs Cameron-Head was a gem and when I grew older I was allowed to fish the Ailort and Loch Eil, where salmon and seatrout were plentiful.

Major General RN Stewart and Marjory Lees allowed me to fish the Moidart where the best seatrout caught weighted 16lbs. Happy days – with grateful thanks.

Michael C Smith, Kinross.