Letters to the editor


First class

Sir, - May I once again thank your readers for continuing to donate used stamps for the Zumat organization in South Africa.

Zumat were established in 1975 and is a Christian Missionary Organization dedicated to bringing health care to the rural areas of the KwaZula Natal Province in South Africa, through aviation.

Their mission is to serve the communities and health workers of the area. They transport doctors, health workers, patients and emergency cases between hospitals to larger medical centres as far south as Durban.

Zumat serves a number of clinics in the rural Maputoland area. They fly doctors from the hospitals to the clinics on a weekly basis.

Used postage stamps can be handed into Long and Gilmour Dental Practice, Bo’ness, marked for my attention. Yours etc., -


by email

Praise be

Sir, - Probably being pedantic - however, the text of “40 years ago” relating to the Songs of Praise Service from Bo’ness recorded in Carriden Parish Church seems to indicate that it was Carriden Parish Church Choir that was 260 strong!

The programme from the event shows that it was a combined choir of the churches, schools and other groups in the town. Indeed the list of those taking part shows the rich tradition of church, community and music within Bo’ness. Yours etc.,


Name and address supplied

Ed hunting

Sir, - I am looking for some information on my ancestors on my father’s side. I have just been given a book of poems from Linlithgow and my great-grandfather or maybe my Ggrandfather has a section in it. In the foreword it mentioned that he was the editor of the Linlithgowshire Gazette around 1883. His name was Robert Fleming and he was born in 1856 in Bathgate.

I am his either great-grandson or grandson, I am not sure which. I would appreciate any information you can give me on his family, I know he married in 1883 in Aberdeen, but do not know who to, and I have a photo of him in a team photo of the Linlithgow Victoria cricket club in 1909, he was the president and I think his son is also in the photo, although this is a guess, but he is listed as R. Fleming Jnr and the other is R. Fleming Snr. My father was also R. Fleming and was a compositor with the Glasgow Herald before we immigrated to Australia in 1951. I am having a hard time getting any information on the Flemings as all my father’s siblings are dead and their progeny are spread around from the UK to Canada and Australia.

Any help would be greatly appreciated, Yours etc.,

Robert A. Fleming


Keep warm

Sir, - May I respond to Mr Ross (letters 27 January).

The supposed “consensus” on man-made global warming is facing an inconvenient challenge after the release of new temperature data showing the planet has not warmed for the past 15 years.

Based on readings from 30,000 measuring stations, data was issued last week by the Met Office and the University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit.

Not unsurprisingly this was issued without the strident fanfare usually associated with these organisations.

It confirms that the rising trend in world temperatures ended in 1997.

Mr Ross mentioned China. In Shanxi Province giant trucks haul coal out of the biggest man-made hole on the planet. Producing steel needs coal and China has 90 years supply. China is supplying 24,500 tons of steel for the new Forth crossing.

I wonder if China will give us foreign aid? Yours etc. -


138 Springfield Road


Bus blues

Sir, – Why is there not a better bus service for Bathgate?

With a two-hourly bus service after 6pm weekdays, it is not acceptable, especially if like myself in December, you are left stranded on the coldest night of the monthbecause the 9pm bus had broken down.

The only means available to getting home in these circumstances is by taxi, which is very expensive.

It also seems to be that the timetable at the West Port is only relaying two hourly services by the 484. The only way I was able to confirm that there was a bus at 9.10am, was to go online.

Something is badly needing to be done in upgrading the bus service to Bathgate. – Yours etc.,


Preston Road, Linlithgow