If the UK government wish to continue receiving the goodwill of Gibraltar and its citizens, I suggest that they urgently re-establish satellite reception with home.
One thing is losing its free port status, another, and much more serious, is not being able to watch Eastenders or Strictly.
No doubt the Spanish government are, at this very moment, working on some acceptable alternatives.
I think that those who are protesting against the proposed offshore petroleum exploration off the Baleares should be aware that there is already an offshore oil producing platform not far away off the Tarragona coast.I should know because I was in charge of the sea transport and installation some 20 odd years ago and to the best of my knowledge there have been no ecological mishaps.In fact probably the contrary as it is well known that undersea life proliferates around undersea platforms and pipelines.
So please be aware that any decision should be based on facts not emotion.
Just for the record I also did the same work for 12 major platforms in the North Sea and again I have yet to see any reported negative impact on the environment there.
Christopher H Strickland
I am a Scottish person who has had a long association with Majorca and have good friends there. Your correspondent Bill Stirling is of course correct in saying people who do not currently live in Scotland will not have a vote in the coming Referendum about Scottish independence. I do, however, object strongly to the general tone of his letter, and in particular his view that it is "tough tittie" that Scottish people outwith Scotland will have no say. This is the kind of bad tempered flavour that he does the "Yes" Campaign no favours.
I was intrigued by the letter from Bill Stirling from Alloa in last Saturday’s Bulletin on the question of Scottish independence, particularly in the way it was punctuated by so much misplaced optimism for the nationalist cause. It appears he was responding to grouses by expat Scots that only those registered as resident in Scotland would have a vote in September’s referendum, no matter how deep-rooted those expats’ Scottish ancestral ties or family links might be.
It is hardly an argument, however, as this sort of disenfranchisement applies everywhere, not least for UK expats losing the right to a postal vote in UK general elections after 15 years (possibly under review) or for former residents of a London parliamentary constituency who cannot vote, even by post, for the Mayor of the city. And just look at the unelected Eurocrats in Brussels.
Democracy these days seems in very poor health. It is no different in the Scottish referendum where thousands of born and bred Scots around the world have no franchise while thousands of Asian and other immigrants (about 10 percent of the population) now living in Scotland do.
Never a supporter of the LibDems, I do nonetheless agree with their new idea that British expats should have some form of representation if living outside the UK, in the way France provides for its overseas territories, and especially if they are still paying taxes in the UK. I wonder if the SNP might consider this in future if they gain independence.
In my own case, I can trace my family back 700 years in Scotland but I will have no vote. So be it, as I gave up on Scotland’s politics and tragic left wing ideologies a long time ago. What saddens me about this little country – whose population is a mere eight percent of the UK’s, is completely in thrall to the genetically lefty nationalists and hard line socialists in the west of Scotland, that is the Glasgow area, with some West Lothianites like Alex Salmond thrown in. What concerns many is that the lesser populated, but much greater area of the Highlands and Islands, is far more inclined to stay with the UK, but will be subjugated totally in an independent, SNP- dominated Scotland run from Edinburgh.
As I strongly believe in the Union, for a thousand reasons, it has to be said that the dividing lines between the YES and NO voters are being muddied by politicos who are not sure what posture to adopt. ‘NO’ obviously sounds negative, so how could the limp entitled ‘Better Together’ campaign under former Labour Chancellor Alistair Darling, sound more positive and upbeat? Perhaps a new slogan, ‘Unionists Unite’, might serve better. (Other suggestions welcome).
Thank goodness David Cameron has now started to roll out the facts of life on preserving the Union. And at last British and Scottish business leaders, and the all-important financial community in Scotland, despite intimidation and threats by the nasty nats, are now taking courage to state the over-riding economic case for the Union, both for Scotland and the rest of the UK. Thankfully, as the NO’s seem to be in the ascendency, I would therefore like to wish Bill Stirling well in enjoying his retreat to the wilds of Clackmannanshire, that garden county of the north, and continue to enjoy the subsidies from the UK taxpayer by means of the Barnet formula, under which Scotland receives additional sums from the UK Treasury to support its overblown public services, £7bn per annum no less. No amount of North Sea oil can fill this black hole. So, at the end of the day it’ll all be about bawbees. Emotions be damned.