Alan Reid, Liberal Democrat MP for Argyll & Bute, and Alison Hay Scottish Parliamentary Candidate welcomed the announcement by Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander, that a 5p per litre cut in fuel duty would be piloted in the Inner & Outer Hebrides and the Northern Isles, subject to agreement from the European Union.
Alan Reid said:
“This cut in fuel duty will help the fragile economies of the Argyll Islands. I have long campaigned for a reduction in fuel duty in remote communities. If the pilot is a success, and I see no reason why it shouldn’t, the scheme should be extended to the Clyde Islands and remote communities in mainland Argyll”
Alison Hay said:
“This would be a tremendous boost to the economy in Argyll & BUte. We have so many island communities that depend on the use of private vehicles for travel and this will help keep the cost of living in these communities down. I hope that the scheme could be moved quickly on by the EU and that it could be extended to include remote mainland areas in the future.”
A similar scheme operates in France, Portugal and Greece, so the EU should have no objection to its introduction here. Here on Tiree, the price of a litre of diesel is 142p and petrol 140p compared to the national average of 118p and 115.2p respectively.
We have been celebrating our first year in practice with a series of awards and the launch of a travelling exhibition.
Roots Design Workshop, our mobile architectural + environmental design practice, pitched our business to on-line Dragons Den star Shaf Rasul on Thursday. This was after we were selected as one of the most promising entrepreneurial businesses in the country. The practice has also been short-listed for a Shell LiveWIRE Grand Ideas Award. This means we are in the running to win a £1000 prize.
We also held a workshop this weekend at the Scottish Housing Expo in Inverness. This involved hosting ‘design surgeries’, where members of the public could approach the team for free advice about building projects they had. The workshop also involved an exhibition of the projects developed during Roots’ first year in practice. These included a range of proposals for domestic new-build and extensions, and energy efficiency upgrades to existing buildings on Tiree. This was an exciting opportunity for us to show our work on a national scale.
We expect over one thousand members of the public to see our work during the course of the Expo, which has been called the single most important architecture and design event to take place in Scotland for the past decade. We plan to tour this exhibition around remote communities during the rest of the summer before presenting to the Power of Place conference in Shetland this September.
Roots encourage members of the public to vote for them in the Shell LiveWIRE Awards at www.shell-livewire.org
Recent reports in some newspapers regarding the death of a young Peregrine Falcon have caused concern here on Tiree.
A visitor to the Island, staying with relatives, found the bird dead at the foot of an electrical pole in their garden and called John Bowler, the RSPB Officer, who, as Peregrine Falcons are protected informed the Tiree Constable, Steven Tanner. The body of the bird was sent to a Veterinary Pathologist in Edinburgh to determine the exact cause of death and as sometimes happens before the facts are known, rumours started that the bird had been shot, possibly with a hand gun.
The Post Mortem found that the Falcon had suffered “superficial trauma to the right side of its head and blunt trauma to its body – actual cause of death was a ruptured liver”. It appears that the youngster had flown into the pole, banging its head and the consequential fall to the ground caused the fatal injury. This had nothing to do with a shooting and unfortunately it is not unusual for young Peregrines to meet their death in this manner as they learn to fly and hunt for themselves.
There was no evidence of the bird being shot but a full toxicology report is being carried out. Unlawful killing of a Peregrine Falcon carries a fine of up to £40.000 and up to 6 months in prison.
Wayne Clark and his bride Elaine Connolly were married recently in Heylipol by the Rev Robert Higham.
The couple held their afternoon reception in An Talla and later Wayne said:
”I’d like to thank Josie and her helpers for putting on such a good meal at such short notice.”
Wayne’s grandmother was born on Tiree before marrying a seriviceman and he is related to Neil ”the Beeler” Macarthur. The couple now live in Oakley, Fife, and plan to continue to visit the island as often as possible.