Readers’ Letters

CG_ Cartoon 20-03-2013.
CG_ Cartoon 20-03-2013.

Find out what our readers think of the stories making the Gazette headlines

Time to protest

Dear Ed, – Regarding the threat to Carstairs Surgery. This is a dastardly plan by Tory deregulation, Scottish Central Government and NHS-Lanarkshire to cut costs (saving two GP salaries).

What we are seeing happen in Carstairs is not new.

Other rural surgeries have also suffered and one culprit is cut-throat competition between big and small pharmacy operators driven by NHS prescription payments.

Competition ought to be healthy but in the case of surgery closures the profit motive has created a chain of unexpected consequences. At least, unexpected by the public at large.

So now we have five employees potentially going on the dole and two doctors who might well end up as salesmen for drug companies, an empty office and 2,500 angry locals.

This is economics gone crazy. What if the Carnwath surgery suffers the same fate next year? And don’t think it could not happen.

Readers should be reminded that at the Carluke PPC meeting in November 2010, while the representative for Lanarkshire Area Medical Committee was not in favour of the proposed pharmacy, the NHS Board panel members, knowing that the outcome would probably be the surgery closure, granted permission to open on purely legal grounds.

Believers in conspiracy theories will not be surprised that this was shortly followed by NHS Lanarkshire ordering the closure of the surgery dispensary and its South Lanarkshire Council rent being tripled.

May I suggest that the staff and doctors do not meekly quit but ride out this coming eviction, making as big a public stink as possible and involve our MSPs, the press and TV media?

Scenes of bailiffs being refused entry and a few dozen pensioners’ reactions look very bad when the glare of publicity forces questions in Holyrood and in Almada Street (where the council has its HQ) in Hamilton. – Yours etc.,


Carstairs resident.

Daffodils bloom

Dear Ed, – Spring is in the air and the nights are getting lighter.

March also sees the start of the Great Daffodil Appeal for Marie Curie Cancer Care.

The charity’s flagship fundraising campaign, it attempts to give everyone in the country an opportunity to buy a daffodil in aid of Marie Curie hospices, nurses and the vital end of life care that helped over 35,000 people in 2012.

There are 43 Marie Curie nurses working throughout communities in Lanarkshire, allowing people the choice to spend their final days at home and providing their family, friends and carers with respite.

As someone born and raised in Carluke and living in Uddingston, it fills me with real pride to know that Marie Curie nurses are helping so many people in Lanarkshire.

We can’t provide the support we do without the support from the general public. So please consider buying and wearing a daffodil this March in support of our work.

If you are interested in getting involved with Marie Curie Cancer Care in any way at all then please don’t hesitate to email me at or call 0141 557 7575. – Yours etc.,


Area Fundraising Manager

Want to model?

Dear Ed, – My husband, Mungo McCosh, has lived and worked in Biggar for many years. I, having only just recently moved here, have started leading a life drawing class at the uniquely designed 1930s Village Hall of Drumelzier (between Broughton Village and Dawyck Botanical Garden on the B712 road) on Thursdays from 6-9pm.

Considering it is a very remote part of the county, we have managed to gather about 18 people from a 10-mile radius who come and draw intensively for three hours.

Some of the participants are from Biggar and Peebles High School, in the middle of their art school applications, others have long ago been to art school and are highly skilled.

We also have our life models coming from as far away as Hamilton and Edinburgh, though we would rather be able to recruit models more locally and, if possible, have a greater diversity of ethnic groups and ages; incidentally we pay a good decent hourly wage plus fuel costs getting there if anyone is keen!

For all enquiries or bookings regarding life classes or being a life model please email or call 07980 575377.

I look forward to hearing from you soon if you you are interested or need further details on our weekly event. – Yours etc.,



Ploughed in

Dear Ed, – It snows. Out come the snow ploughs. They clear the middle of the road. Fine, if only we could get our cars out on that nice clear road. Because the ploughs have left a mountain of snow blocking our driveway onto that nice clear road.

I know we could dig our way out. But I for one can’t. I am 78 and have arthritis (lower spine). So I can’t shift that mountain of snow.

I depend on my car a lot. I need my car for shopping and getting out and about. My husband is now in a care home. So I need the car to go to visit him. – Yours etc.,


Turning purple

Dear Ed, – If you see lots of people wearing purple on Tuesday, March 26, it’s no new fashion trend. Ask if they are supporting Purple Day to help raise awareness of epilepsy.

You can turn your world purple too, or hold some fun purple-themed activities to draw attention to this important cause.

Join our purple ribbon brigade of MSPs, schools and workplaces doing their bit to highlight epilepsy. It may not pack the same punch as Red Nose Day but your taking part in Purple Day helps reduce the social stigma which impacts many of the 54,000 people living with epilepsy in Scotland.

Get a Purple Day ideas pack at: or ask our Freephone helpline to send you one on 0808 800 2200. – Yours etc.,


Public Affairs Officer,

Epilepsy Scotland,