In this week's letters, residents discuss the upcoming council elections and Helensburgh Community Council's first beach clean of the year.

To have your say on any topic of local interest just email your views to, with 'Letter' in the subject line, by 12 noon on Monday.

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I got a lovely surprise recently as a communication from a local councillor dropped through the letter box.

It’s been a long while since I heard from any of them, I thought, but better late than never. Then the penny dropped: it’s been five years so there must be an election soon.

The phrase “Delivering for you” or something similar caught my eye as the leaflet flew on its arc into the recycling bin.

Irony will obviously be a central theme of the election.

Councillors have indeed delivered – a burst tyre in a pothole and two broken suspension springs on my car due to the state of the roads but the council denies all liability.  Streets strewn with rubbish as we follow council rules to leave uncollected bins on the pavement for weeks, only for them to be blown over by the wind.

As good neighbours and citizens we all did the decent thing and picked up the litter. No chance the council would do anything.

However, our councillors have been successful in ensuring/stopping (delete according to your point of view) the visits of the Tooth Fairy, Santa Claus and a second independence referendum.

It looks like a case of deja vu as voters are again asked to treat the council election as another opinion poll on another independence referendum. A matter on which councillors have zero power or influence.

That neatly avoids the question of accountability on what councillors have actually delivered for Helensburgh and its residents in return for the eye-watering council tax.

It also avoids any serious debate on the necessary improvements in efficiency and the priorities of the woeful Argyll and Bute Council.

To be fair, there is so little that councillors actually decide nowadays. Social care, education, planning, leisure and recreation have been wholly or effectively divested, nationalised or delegated to others. So the councillor basic salary of £18,604 a year for joining two Zoom meetings seems indefensible.

Public service should be just that – not a party perk for a handful of people in any party to decide given the predictability of council elections.

Personally, I would prefer that salaries for councillors be abolished and the money returned to residents through council tax rebates or given to community councils for local priorities thus giving them some relevance.

James Robb



How refreshing to come across a well-written piece about a building without any spurious use of the term “property”.

Well done the Helensburgh Advertiser editor and staff for the Clydesdale Bank piece in last week’s Advertiser, in contrast with page 20, where “property” is mis-used a number of times.

Of course in this context property is land, and buildings, houses, etc. are only examples of land use or development , and not “properties” themselves.

Air-head TV presenters in particular are guilty of using such terms whilst being blissfully unaware of their meaning.

Again, well done you!

Jim McKillop

Napier Avenue, Cardross


More than 20 volunteers took part in Helensburgh Community Council’s first beach clean of the season on Saturday.

They had to contend with the past four months of winter debris including a considerable mass of timber that had been swept on to the shore.

The Community Council would like to publicly thank every one of the volunteers who pitched in for all their hard work.

We would particularly like to  thank Davy Howie of Drumfork Farm for his continued support, for it was he, once again, who provided the tractor to do the heavy lifting.

Our thanks also to the Argyll and Bute Council staff at the Blackhill Depot in providing the invaluable assistance of a skip to remove the debris.

It was an all-round community effort and our sincere thanks to everyone who took part.

We look forward to seeing you at the next one.

Norman Muir

Convener, Helensburgh Community Council


With the days lengthening and temperatures slowly rising, more and more children can be seen outside again, doing what all children should do – playing.

Muddy knees, hide-and-seek and picnics with teddy bears should be part of every childhood but there’s never been a more challenging time for children.

Right now, children are facing conflict, disasters and other crises in countries around the world. And it is children that are often hardest hit – like the 7.5 million children currently affected by the rapidly escalating conflict in Ukraine.

One way to support Unicef’s work for all children around the world is taking part in the Soccer Aid Schools Challenge. Pupils design their very own sporty obstacle course, with all fundraising efforts going towards Soccer Aid for Unicef. By kicking, bouncing, sprinting, skipping, dribbling, or hopping across the playground, schools across the UK will be doing their bit to help children around the world.

If you think your school would be interested, please visit  to sign up.

Mimi Gordon

Unicef UK