Letters to the editor – week 39

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Tides and Loch Gilp


I was delighted to read Stuart White’s letter in the September 21 edition of the Argyllshire Advertiser, and I could not agree with him more.

It is certainly more than time we shook off – or at least drastically reduced – the inefficient and over-subsidised wind farming. As he says, it is far too dependent on the vagaries of the weather.

Tidal power can never fail and here in Mid Argyll we have potentially the most efficient and cost-effective tidal system under our noses. This, in turn, would open up additional tourist and recreational facilities at virtually no extra cost. This would be a win-win situation, but without, I suspect, sufficient profit to satisfy the usual parasitic financial interests.

What is this simple and relatively inexpensive answer?

Simply build a sea wall or dam, call it what you will, across the relatively narrow entrance of Loch Gilp from the Lingerton promontary towards Ardrishaig via the rocky skerries, which would reduce the cost, and finish short of the Ardrishaig lighthouse/harbour wall, thus funneling all the tides through a very narrow area.

Then simply incorporate as many sea locks and gates as needed to allow passage of boats in and out of the harbour and the Crinan Canal.

The additional locks would be used for either lower-able turbines or permanently submerged tidal units such as in the Pentland Firth. This would be simple and cost-effective, as the generating turbines catch the tides both in and out. After all, the Romans were using tide mills 2,000 years ago, so the idea is nothing new.

In addition to this, Ardrishaig would finish up with an enhanced harbour  and marina and, with a few rocks removed from the beach, the wide open area at low tide back to Lochgilphead – now wasted – would make a splendid international course for activities such as land yacht racing.

The other deceitful cuckoo that we should consider debunking is the very misleading fallacy that electric cars are helping to save the planet. Yes, it is ideal and justified for town or city use to keep the fume level down in densely built up areas where fresh air is in short supply among high buildings. But generally their use is unjustifiable because pollution would actually increase considerably overall because to generate every single power unit of electricity it takes roughly two polluting units of other fuels such as coal, oil or even gas to produce that single electrical unit.

So, unless the electricity is always generated from renewable systems such as hydro, tidal, solar or wind, then total pollution would go up, not down.

One more cuckoo destined to be the sham of another expensive white elephant.

Bob Henderson, Lochgilphead

Tarbert in harmony


We would like to say a huge thanks to all the bands who played on the Sunday of this year’s Tarbert Music Festival for making it a successful afternoon after the event had to be moved from the quay to the village hall – this has to be our most stressful decision.

Thanks to all the hotels and pubs for organising the great music for the weekend.

We raised just over £700 at the coffee morning, so thanks to everyone who baked or donated and also to all the helpers – Anne, Gail,Jane, Allie, Nina and Zena.

Many thanks also to the award-winning Mid Argyll Pipe Band, who entertained a huge crowd in the pouring rain and also the Loch Fyne Pipe Band who played to the Sunday survivors.

To Mrs Brown, our very own collector extrondanaire, her wee buckets totalled £915.

Finally, and most importantly, thanks to visitors and locals for turning out to support our music festival.

Thank you all.

Margaret, Duncan, Barbara and Kirsten of Tarbert Music Festival

Autism excellence


The National Autistic Society is looking for people and organisations who have done something amazing for autistic children, adults, or their families.

Perhaps it’s a teacher who has helped a child achieve something great, an autistic adult who has been campaigning tirelessly or a business that has put a lot of effort into making their workplace accessible.

If any of your readers know of a person or organisation like this, please nominate them for our seventh annual Autism Professionals Awards. We want to celebrate their achievements, so we can improve understanding of autism and inspire other people and organisations to make a difference too. Find out more about autism and nominate by visiting the www.autismprofessionalsawards. org.uk website.

Carol Povey, director, National Autistic Society’s Centre for Autism

Where there’s a will


Research funded by the British Heart Foundation has helped halve death rates from heart and circulatory diseases over the past 50 years, and so much of our work has only been possible thanks to the amazing individuals who have remembered the BHF in their will.

I would personally like to honour these people and express our gratitude for the research breakthroughs and thousands of lives they have helped to save.

A gift of any size, after you’ve provided for your loved ones, will enable the BHF to continue to fund pioneering research to find future cures and treatments into heart and circulatory conditions.

To find out more about leaving a gift in your will and to download a free wills guide, please visit bhf.org.uk/wills

Simon Gillespie, chief executive, British Heart Foundation