Your latest letters to the Advertiser includes your views on council cuts, Brexit, Scottish independence, higher education and more.

To have your say on any local issue, just email your views to Please remember to include your name and address, and to keep your contributions as brief and to-the-point as you can.

We also require a daytime contact phone number in case we need to check any details at short notice, though this will not be published.

Happy writing!

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After reading all the facts and figures from several members of our glorious Argyll and Bute Council with regards to the latest budget, I just couldn’t resist completing a Freedom of Information (FOI) request to them.

The FOI in question was for figures with regards to fly tipping, litter and dog fouling, and to see if the residents of Argyll and Bute are getting value for money.

It was said that these services were costing hundreds of thousands and yet when you see the results it’s quite shocking to see the services are a total waste of time and money.

Over a period of 12 months, in a total area of 6,909 square kilometres and 87,000 residents, there were, and I quote from the FOI report, three for dog fouling, four for litter and 12 for fly tipping.

So are the people of Argyll and Bute getting value for money from our council? Looking at the above figures and taking into consideration money being spent on wardens, I really don’t think we are.

So instead of wasting money on new ivory towers and maintaining old ivory towers that have been left to rot because the council can’t sell them. Let start directing money to where it is needed, youth projects, elderly care etc etc etc.

Graham Walker

Machrie Drive, Helensburgh

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AS a long stanging guest of Helensburgh Lions Club, I would like, on behalf of Helensburgh Lunch Club and the members of Grey Matters, to thank the Lions Club committee and their ladies for arranging the lovely afternoon we enjoyed at Helensburgh Golf Club on Saturday, March 2.

It was also a delight to have Beth Street and the Streetwise group back in the swing of things at the event.

We are all looking forward to the next event.

Jean Holland


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The infamous “McCrone Report” of 1974 was published in full for the first time in a national newspaper last week.

The report, you will recall, was hushed up by successive Labour and Tory governments until it was uncovered after a Freedom of Information Request by an SNP researcher in 2005.

It blows away the myth that Scotland depends on Westminster generosity to survive. It admits that an independent Scotland would “tend to be in chronic surplus to a quite embarrassing degree, and its currency would become the hardest in Europe, with exception, perhaps, of the Norwegian kroner”.

The Norwegians have a £1 trillion 'rainy day fund' from their oil. What is Scotland getting? Pulled out of the EU against its will, and we are only now being told the full horror of what lies ahead if that happens: we will be forced to accept Trump’s terms and conditions. Trade with the US is apparently the Brexit promised land!

Scotland has been taken for a fool for too long. How dare Westminster accuse us of selfishness for wanting to manage our own affairs, when we have suffered deprivation for more than 40 years as a result of their mismanagement?

Our resources are bountiful, even without oil. A simple internet search confirms this. Anyone who trusts Westminster to manage our considerable assets better for us than we could manage them for ourselves would be wise to reconsider their loyalties.

Margaret McDonald


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We are all mesmerised by the repetitive swings of the Brexit process. It is an exercise in national hypnotism. We have lost the capacity for rational thought as a result.

The solutions are simple. Or to quote Alexander, the meerkat from the TV adverts – and, now, our Prime Minister: "simples."

We should have left the EU the day after the vote, when David Cameron resigned and Theresa May became Prime Minister. We did not; however, we could leave on Monday. In a stroke, the uncertainty is gone and the will of the people has been fulfilled.

In the Good Friday Agreement, both sides, north and south, agreed on a united Ireland at some point in the future.

Ireland is united on Monday. No need for a border, hard or soft, or any backstop.

Everyone in Ulster was granted dual citizenship in the Good Friday Agreement. If some are not happy, they can move to the UK. British sovereignty will be observed by immigration checks at ports of entry on the mainland.

The United Kingdom welcomes and needs the skills of immigrants from around the world. Immigrants in the country today have the automatic right to stay.

We abolish the Holyrood and Westminster parliaments. They have become talking shops for self-indulgent hypocrites.

Every member of The Independent Group should have resigned their seat to force a by-election. This would have given the public their democratic rights to re-elect or reject their MPs who have instead kept their salaries and perks because "their values" are important.

After three weeks, we are no further forward in knowing what The Independent Group are for or against. Chuka Ummuna has no leadership abilities.

Theressa May was an incompetent Home Secretary. She has been a disaster as Prime Minister. She survives because there is nobody in the wings to challenge her.

Fire the lot. Simples.

John Black

Mahe, The Seychelles

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Every university in Scotland faces cuts to funding under the SNP. Research from the Scottish Funding Council has revealed that every university in Scotland faces cuts to funding, with half of institutions facing cuts of more than 2 per cent.

Universities Scotland have warned that some universities will now struggle to make ends meet.

The SNP are refusing to listen to what this could mean for students and higher education.

This is what happens when as usual the separatists continue to obsess over another independence referendum while forgetting to do their day job.

Cllr Alastair Redman

(Conservative, Kintyre and the Islands)

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As we discover more about dementia and develop a better understanding of the disease processes which cause dementia, it is crucial that we reflect on how we respond to the needs of people living with this progressive terminal illness.

Our improving understanding is not reflected in current policy and practice; the increasing health care needs of people with advanced dementia are too often not recognised or met.

Every day, people living with advanced dementia, their carers and their families are dealing with a complexity of physical, emotional and psychological challenges, and ever-changing health care needs.

However, people with advanced dementia do not receive the health care they should be entitled and instead face significant social care charges.

By recognising and identifying advanced dementia we can work towards ensuring that people living and dying with advanced dementia can have equity of access to the health care they need on an equal basis to those who have other progressive terminal illnesses, and which is free at the point of delivery.

Alzheimer Scotland’s Fair Dementia Care campaign calls for a number of reforms, including equal access to free health care for people living with advanced dementia and is leading the way to highlight the unfair inequalities that are a reality for so many families.

Whilst we understand that it will require significant effort and dedication to fully transform our health care system, we ask that the Scottish Government lead the way by delivering fair dementia care for those with advanced dementia without delay.

To join the campaign to help transform Scotland’s dementia care visit We would also encourage anyone who has experienced issues in accessing the care they need for advanced dementia, to email

Only by sharing your experiences can we show why we need change, to make sure that Scotland delivers fair dementia care.

Jim Pearson

Director of Policy and Research, Alzheimer Scotland

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If you love a game of golf then why not pitch in for a good cause this year?

Par for Parkinson’s is a fund-raiser that gives you the opportunity to create your own golfing event to raise vital funds for Parkinson’s UK.

Whether you want to organise a golf competition, take on a Three Course Challenge, or hold a golf quiz night, there’s something for all golf fans.

The money raised through Par for Parkinson’s will fund our research to help find a cure and improve the lives of people with Parkinson’s, a progressive neurological condition that affects 12,400 people in Scotland.

We are the leading charity driving better care, treatments and quality of life for those with the condition. Our mission is to find a cure and improve life for everyone affected by Parkinson's through cutting edge research, information, support and campaigning.

There are more than 40 symptoms of the condition. As well as the most widely known symptom - tremor – there are other symptoms like muscle stiffness, depression, anxiety, hallucinations, memory problems and dementia. Parkinson’s affects everyone differently.

To find out how you can take part in Par for Parkinson’s and make a difference then please visit

Jan Mattison

West of Scotland Regional Fundraiser, Parkinson’s UK