Comment posted Dunoon ferry meeting revealed more than it knew by newsroom.
For ferryman: Please just read what we actually say.
We said nothing about Sandbank Marina – we simply said that Mr MacDonald’s attitude is exemplary in its readiness to address the real and immediate issue – and that his careful description of the waters in the Holy Loch made us grin.
newsroom also commented
- OFFICIAL CORRECTION OF INFORMATION ON THIS POST.
We have unequivocal official information from Argyll Ferries that this incident is a complete fabrication. It never happened.
This alarmist claim is therefore, according to the company, utterly untrue and the propagation of such material cannot be other than mischievous.
If there are people with first hand experience of the alleged incident and possibly mobile phone photographs who wish to contradict this, they should make that known and we will communicate it to the company.
- For Grant MacDonald: ‘The core issue is here and now. What will fix it? Quickly?’ This is a great attitude and this is what needs to be addressed – quickly.
And your description of the Holy Loch as ‘not as exciting as the estuary proper’ gave us the best grin of the day. Thanks.
- For Bill Jardine; This is a level of dishonesty unworthy of your previous record and you do Dunboon no favours by taking this very easy option, offe3ring it succour to stay in the rut it has got itself stuck in.
From a comfortable distance, you are happy to support the complacent irrational whingeing that will take Dunoon nowhere.
Form being here, in the middle of it, we are willing to risk audiences to put the real interests of the town first in putting an evidenced but unpopular set of perspectives for it to consider.
While you and we may often disagree, we would have expected more intellectual engagement and, frankly, more balls than this from you.
Nothing we have said is ‘biased’ and nothing is about supporting the SNP or not . We have been swingeingly and unequivocally critical of the SNP administration that has brought about the present mess – and arguably more mercilessly so than any.
What we are saying is based on economic and functional logic with observation of data that was there for everyone to see on Thursday night – which we recorded and, in analysing it after the event, came to realise what interesting dynamic changes it showed.
- For Campbell Cowan: For Argyll does not dislike Dunoon but is exasperated by its apparent inability to look at what it needs to do to make itself an attractive and worthwhile place for visitors – and to get on with it.
Ferrying cars to the ‘centre’ of a place with frankly little to offer is ferrying in those with the means to move on – and they did.
Ferrying in foot passengers is delivering hostages with no means of escape – and, brutally, this is Dunoon’s best bet commercially until it gets its act together.
Of all of Argyll’s major towns, Dunoon is the noisiest in complaining and the one evidently least minded to help itself. The town has real assets (all of which need serious work) but – except for the Burgh Hall project (which has an external engine) – but is showing no will to recast itself to develop these.
The magnificent pier has been left to rot with no voting threats to protect it.
The Queen’s Hall is still standing.
The ‘town centre’ is an obstructive mess, with ‘traffic calmers’ and a peppering of bollards and posts of all kinds. Driving and walking through it is a positively unpleasant and untranquil experience.
The esplanade is – what exactly?
The road system around the pier and ferries area is such a shapeless desert it is utterly indecipherable to drivers from elsewhere.
Similarly, the road system at and beyond the McColls Hotel building is incoherent.
The potentially attractive and charming hill streets beyond the pier, which could become a lively inner village, go unrecognised in their potential and, of course, undeveloped..
There is a serious crime problem, much of it imported with crime families from Clydebank – drugs, knives and guns – which manifests itself in anti-social and violent behaviour in the evenings, in parts of the town visitors might otherwise like to be around at that time of day.
Overall, the town is tired, jaded, shapeless, visually resistant to interest, sometimes threatening and short of enough first class retail and service opportunities to attract and retain visitors.
Dunoon has had councillors leading Argyll and Bute for a long time now, yet they are regularly and unquestioningly voted back despite the shape the town is in. There has been no integrated, intelligent, strategic envisioning and planning for the economic development and the future of this important town.
If Dunoon buys promises rather than delivery and is not interested in doing anything other than continually demanding the sort of ferry service it does not need, there is little anyone else can do for it.
And that should underpin just why Dunoon exasperates us.
The entire Cowal peninsula badly needs Dunoon to shape up because it is needed as the economic engine of the area – and that is its responsibility.
Nothing would be so energising and nothing as much fun as seeing Dunoon gather the will to reshape itself strategically for a prosperous future. If there were evidence of that, Dunoon would find For Argyll amongst its most vigorous and inventive supporters.
- For ferryman: We were the only one to set out to do a first hand and exhaustive analysis of the passenger service in action, identifying faults and lacks at an early but fair stage of its service: http://forargyll.com/2011/08/the-dunoon-passenger-ferry-experience/
We have regularly identified the necessary actions to be taken. We rest our case on our record, which has always been based on research, evidence and analysis (all of which we openly share) and not on sentiment.
Recent comments by newsroom
- Argyll and Bute Council: Where are we now?
The difference is that the new ferry to Campbeltown had an arrival time and actually arrived.
A major part of what we work to do is to support initiatives at all levels that are focused on regeneration and are driven by positive, creative energies that make things happen.
Campbeltown wins hands down over Kilmory any minute of any day on these criteria – and we never spare ourselves travelling and hard work on a cause that has some hope of going somewhere.
And just in case you are implying that this was a jolly – which we never do: I myself drove to Campbeltown – 1 hr 30m – did the work and drove back again immediately.
- Argyll and Bute Council: Where are we now?
This amusing spin disguises the fact that there was no political ‘speculation’.
There was formally recorded political realignment and manoeuvering by all councillors – which was done in some urgency before the council meeting, yet appears to have stalled – for some reason and for the time time being at least.
Councillors do not seem to realise that this adds to the alienation of voters rather than assuage concerns.
- Big welcome at Campbeltown for new Ardrossan ferry
We understand she carried about 60 passengers and although, flying around to catch as much as possible, we didn’t have time to count the cars coming off, we did look out for this and there were a respectable number of them.
- Argyll and Bute Council: Councillor McCuish leads again
We appreciate that it is inconvenient for a light to be shone on doings your party would prefer to keep hidden in shady places from those it asks to vote for it.
That is a dishonourable contract.
As the former Alliance of Independent Councillors [which had nothing at all do with Michael Russell ] knows very well, when it was damaging Argyll and Bute by its conduct during the 2010-11 schools closure wars, we were even more vigilant in keeping them under scrutiny and publishing on their manoeuvres.
We had to be even more vigilant because they were skilled at keeping things under wraps – where the SNP has conducted its acts of political genocide en plein air. All anyone has had to do is draw up a chair.
It should be obvious from our stance in recent weeks that we have no ‘vendetta’ against Councillor Dick Walsh, whom we dealt with arguably more harshly than we have done with Mr Russell.
A central function of our role is to contribute to the holding to account of those elected to serve the people. We do our best to fulfil this fairly – and hard. But we have no vendetta against anyone.
In Mr Russell’s case we simply feel he is a hot air balloon who has imploded over Argyll and done a great deal of harm – profoundly so to his own party, which we used to support. The evidence for our view is in the public domain.
- Radically new council group changes all the dynamics: party politics dead in Argyll
The fact is that the SNP councillors in the Argyll and Bute for Change group are not ‘SNP councilors’ in council group terms – as rules forbid membership of more than one group.
So the ‘Russell camp’ is definitely no longer in the council’s SNP group, although presumably they will personally vote in elections according to their preferences.
And IF the other 8 SNP members have actually joined [as opposed to supporting [the Argyll, Lomond and the Isles group, there is no formal SNP group at all in Argyll and Bute Council.
If this has become the situation, it means that the SNP as a party has no right of purview over the behaviour of ANY of its originally elected councillors, none of whom would now be SNP councillors.
You have to say this is fun. It’s not politics but it is a laugh.
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