COUNCIL budget cuts, a new development plan for Argyll and Bute, and the ongoing General Election campaign are among the topics in focus in this week's Helensburgh Advertiser letters page.

To have your say on any topic of local interest, just email your views to or get in touch via the Send Us Your News section of this site.

Please remember to supply us with your name and address, and also to try and keep your contributions as brief and to-the-point as you can.

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a daytime telephone number to contact you in case we need to check any details at short notice, though this will not be published.

Happy writing!

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THERE are two significant events bubbling around the town which will have a future impact on our lives.

The first is the Argyll and Bute Council budget cuts. Community views have been invited on this and folk are encouraged to comment on the council website.

The Community Council will also put together a submission which we will share with the community. However, if anyone wishes to contribute to this submission please get in contact through our website. The closing date for comment is December12, 2019.

The second event is the recent publication of the Local Development Plan 2 which sets out for the next few years the development proposals and environmental designations for the Argyll and Bute Council area.

We are only involved with this within the town boundaries. The documentation is contained on the council's website and a hard copy is available in the library.

This consultation runs from November 14 until January 23, 2020. The Community Council will also compile a submission which will be publicly available for comment and anyone who wishes to assist this process is invited to support us.

Norman Muir (Convener, Helensburgh Community Council)

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READ MORE: Your letters to the Advertiser – November 14, 2019

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I was brought up in industrial Lanarkshire in the 1950s and 1960s when every week my parents would remind me, ‘Sticks and stones may break your bones but names will never hurt you’.

Given that my walking style was ‘distinctive’ due to wearing a full length leg support, this was good advice. Many years later when teaching in a secondary school, I was delighted to learn that my nick-name was ‘Hop-along’. Given my poor teaching skills, it could have been much worse!

Even I find the language currently used by and about politicians difficult to take. Jeremy Corbyn heckled as a ‘terrorist sympathiser’ by a Church of Scotland minister. The family members of Boris Johnson resigning from Parliament because of the high number of deceptions and untruths made by the Prime Minister.

While the First Minister of Scotland and her husband Peter Murrell, the chief executive officer of the SNP, manage to keep a tight grip on their party.

Recently there are increasing numbers of leaks on issues and occasions when they have tried to hide truths from the public.

The ‘Let’s get Brexit done’ slogan promoted by Mr Johnson is probably the most intentionally misleading statement ever. He knows that exiting the EU with or without a deal will require additional years of negotiations and arbitrations. ‘Done’ is in fact just the ‘start’.

Most of the derogatory names and pseudonyms given to current politicians are justified by their behaviour.

Regrettably the volcano of false promises, exaggerated financial hand-outs, unrealistic pledges, are likely to increase as the election gets closer.

I noticed on TV that Jo Swinson was undertaking boxing training. No doubt this was just a photo opportunity but she and the Liberal Democrats have quite a fight on their hands.

However their programme is clear; stop Brexit; stop independence; tackle the climate emergency; build a fairer economy; transform mental health services.

Finlay Craig, Cove

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READ MORE: Helensburgh Advertiser letters – November 7, 2019

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IN response to Argyll and Bute Councillor Gary Mulvaney being chosen as the Conservatives' General Election candidate, just remember that it was Cllr Mulvaney who voted for the extortionate £9 a day parking charge to climb Ben Arthur.

He might have a short memory but I don't. I just hope the man comes knocking, but then again I very much doubt it.

'Whiskywalker' (via

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READ MORE: Your letters to the Advertiser – October 31, 2019

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COUNCILLOR Mulvaney does not appear to understand that the people's priorities he mentions (Advertiser, November 7, 2019) are devolved matters and not for determination by Westminster, which is the election for which he is standing unless he is aware of a plan by Boris Johnson to grab back these powers.

Can Councillors Mulvaney and Reid also confirm that they will sign the WASPI women pledge in view of the fact that the Conservative/Lib Dem coalition government caused this disastrous situation for many, many women?

Kay Dudgeon (via

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READ MORE: Helensburgh Advertiser letters – October 24, 2019

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AS Christmas draws ever nearer, why not get the little ones excited for the big day with a letter from Santa?

It’s a great way to bring joy to your own family, whilst knowing you’re making a positive difference to the lives of children who may need it most this Christmas.

The letters can be tailored to your child with name, age, hobbies and a personal message to get Christmas in your household off to a magical start. There are eight new designs to choose from including 'Reindeer Flying Practice’, ‘Christmas Disco’ and ‘Elves are Ready to Go!'

We know that on average at least two children in every primary school classroom have suffered some form of abuse. You can help us be there for them and provide the necessary support at Christmas and all year round.

For every letter from Santa, we suggest a donation of £5, which goes a long way to helping children.

With £8 we can cover the cost for our volunteer counsellors to answer two calls to the NSPCC’s Childline service. On average, a child contacts Childline every 25 seconds. It provides a safe, confidential place for children with no one else to turn to, whatever their worry, whenever they need help.

They can get in contact 24 hours a day, 365 days a year on 0800 1111 or

A £10 donation could help us answer two calls to the free NSPCC Helpline from adults worried about a child. It is open every day of the year for any adult worried about a child on 0808 800 5000 or

Our practitioners provide advice and support, listen to concerns about a child, and offer general information about child protection.

To get creating your family’s personalised letter from Santa, and start spreading the festive cheer, visit the NSPCC website.

Paul Cockram (Head of fund-raising for NSPCC Scotland)

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READ MORE: Your letters to the Advertiser – October 17, 2019

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Christmas is a truly magical time and this year Barnardo’s Scotland wants everyone to enjoy an extra merry Kidsmas too!

We are asking people across Scotland to host a Kidsmas Party at home, school, work or with local community groups to raise money for disadvantaged children and families.

Our free Kidsmas Party Packs include games, a quiz and lots more fun fundraising ideas to help make your gathering a memorable one.

The campaign’s mascot is the Kidsmas Snowman which represents children and families coming together to build snowmen at Christmas - in the same way Barnardo’s Scotland wants people to come together to help vulnerable children.

Supporters are also encouraged to set up a Build your own Kidsmas Snowman online fundraising page. They can ask people to donate by throwing a ‘donation snowball’. The more snowballs are thrown, the bigger the snowman gets.

For many people Christmas is a time for family, fun and presents, but for vulnerable children across Scotland this time of year is just as challenging as any other.

I encourage everyone to get into the Kidsmas spirit this year by hosting a Kidsmas Party. Not only will you have fun, but you’ll also help make sure more vulnerable children are happy, safe and cared for this Christmas.

Download or order your free pack at And build a snowman online at

Martin Crewe (Director, Barnardo’s Scotland)

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READ MORE: Helensburgh Advertiser letters – October 10, 2019

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Today, November 21, is Carers’ Rights Day, and this year the focus is on supporting carers to prepare for the future.

It is estimated that there are 7.3 million unpaid carers in the UK, and we know from experience that many of these unpaid carers are incredibly devoted to their loved ones. With an estimated 6,000 people taking on a caring responsibility every day, it is understandable that many may not feel prepared to take on the role and plan for their future. That’s why I’d like to take a moment to reassure your readers that we are here to help.

As a charity we are passionate to do all we can to support unpaid carers, by creating a place where carers and their loved ones can come at the times when they need us the most. Simply spending time together in the company of our staff, volunteers and other carers; and their loved ones.

For so many of the people that we support, our breaks are so much more than just the opportunity to take some time away. They help relationships to flourish and everyone ends up better off for being together.

To find out more about Revitalise, our breaks, or the ways that we may be able to support you please visit or call 0303 303 0145.

Abby Kessock-Philip (Revitalise)