Letters to the editor

From our November 4, 2011, edition

Sir, – Linlithgow Rose Community Football Club would like to thank the staff and patrons of The Four Marys for their continued support of youth football in the town.

Ian and Eve have been long term supporters of the old BFC Linlithgow, and have carried on this support for the new Linlithgow Rose CFC. The latest “change jar” collection has raised over £50 for the club. Every penny of this is invested in providing facilities, kit and opportunity for the youth of Linlithgow and the help is hugely appreciated. – Yours etc.,

DOUG JOHNSTON

Coach

Linlithgow Rose CFC

Wrong priority

Sir, – Regarding building on green land from Kirkliston to Bo’ness and the West Lothian Plan, there is a booming world population, desertification in Southern Europe and Russia and poor harvests of wheat, corn and soya in the United States, Canada and Australia.

Commodity speculators do not help the situation.

Despite obesity and food waste, the forecast food crisis has arrived and can only get worse.

It affects everyone on the planet. For the USA this means less biofuels and more oil consumption, for us this manifests itself as rising food prices, in Algeria and Tunisia as riots and sadly for the world’s poorest, famine.

We import 40 per cent (and increasing) of our food so our soil is our most valuable natural resource, not coal or oil.

There is a housing problem but this is being addressed and more can be done.

Lots of new housing has been made available within Edinburgh and here in Linlithgow without elimination of productive land or countryside.

Take a trip into Glasgow on the train and look out the window. There are acres of derelict land waiting for redevelopment. Land speculation is part of this problem.

This has nothing to do with housing, jobs or regeneration but depletion of a non-renewable natural resource for the short term profit of landowners and business.

Affordable and quality housing is not their priority, there is more money in building more supermarkets and five bedroom villas at £385,000. – Yours etc.,

JAMES BRINDLE

47 Bellsburn Avenue,

Linlithgow

Super show

Sir, – I was fortunate to hear a concert by the Tommy Smith Youth Jazz Orchestra on Saturday night held last Linlithgow Primary School as part of the Arts Guild programme and what a marvellous performance it was.

The musicians, whose average age must have been about 19 or 20 were as good as any of the modern and big band jazzers I’ve heard over the last 50 years or so.

Tommy compered with his droll sense of humour and worked in a tenor sax solo which demonstrated his own amazing virtuosity.

The ability of these talented youngsters to play everything from well-known standards to the more technical modern jazz was superb - as were the soloists.

I think we are going to hear a lot more of this band whom I gather are the product of Tommy Smith’s teaching. Well done Linlithgow Arts Guild for booking them. – Yours etc.,

BOB ANDERSON

Blackness Road, Linlithgow

Sacrifice

Sir, – This Remembrance Sunday, November 13, as our thoughts turn to the sacrifices made by the armed forces, I would ask readers to spare a moment for the remarkable men and women of the Royal Air Force.

Today the RAF is deployed worldwide, defending our skies at home and supporting our troops in Afghanistan, as well as playing a vital role in toppling the tyrannical regime in Libya.

Seventy years ago the RAF was just as stretched, flying to defend the UK, Malta, Egypt, and the Atlantic supply lines. Like their successors they also fought to defeat a tyrant regime.

By then we had won the Battle of Britain but bomber missions during November 1941 were hazardous in the extreme.

The RAF Benevolent Fund was on hand then and is still here today, supporting all generations of the Royal Air Force, including those currently serving.

Our mission is to honour their sacrifice by looking after the RAF family, helping to repay what Winston Churchill called the ‘Debt We Owe’ to all RAF personnel.

At this time of giving thanks I would urge anyone with a Royal Air Force background who is in need of help or support to contact our free advice line on 0800 169 2942 or via our website: www.rafbf.org

You can also find out ways of getting involved with our work. We receive no government funding and could not do what we do without the support we receive from the RAF and general public.

I would like to close by paying my own tribute to all those serving in the RAF today. Their bravery, commitment and enduring spirit are worthy of the highest traditions of the Royal Air Force, and this Remembrance Sunday we will stop to give thanks for all that the RAF does in defence of our freedom. – Yours etc.,

AIR MARSHAL

SIR ROBERT WRIGHT

Controller,

RAF Benevolent Fund