Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Escape from Alacatraz

“I confirm that there is now no question of our erecting a permanent structure – it simply is not going to happen.”

So said councillor Duncan MacIntyre, Argyll & Bute Council transport spokesperson, as quoted in this week’s Buteman article on the subject of the proposed 3 metre steel security fence and its topping of three strands of barbed wire.

The fence was initially claimed to be needed to comply with the Department of Transport’s ‘Transec’ policy on the protection of passengers, ports and shipping. Then, in the face of the resultant outcry, it transpired that things might not be quite right and that this insanity had been dreamed up by someone who had been reading the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code, which applies to ships larger than five hundred gross tonnes in weight, and making voyages in international waters. Quite which of their brain cells was responsible for equating this code to the likes of Bute ferries will probably never be known, but it should be pensioned off sharpish if it is ever found.

While the news is welcome, after reading the carefully chosen words of the authority, I find myself remaining concerned about the future for free access to the area of Rothesay pier by members of the public – that’s you and me.

I dislike articles dependent on carefully selected short quotes, generally taken out of context to change their meaning, and commend you to read the full article to confirm that while I am indeed making a few carefully selected quotes, these are only for the purpose of review.

From the first quote given above, we have a specific reference to “no question of our erecting a permanent structure”, which leaves the door open for temporary structures.

The Buteman article begins with a similar observation, and notes that senior officials and council member met and “quickly came to the conclusion that there was no need for a permanent barrier”. Again, ruling out only a permanent structure.

The door remains open for future developments under the hysterical anti-terror banner, as councillor MacIntyre went on to say the authority was now “seeking to agree a measured approach in full consultation with local members”.

Whatever happens in future, perhaps the last word is best left with the statement Tim Saul, chairman of Isle of Bute Marketing and Tourism Ltd, gave to The Buteman, “This is a very welcome development – perhaps common sense has prevailed after a fleeting instance of insanity.”


Jul 17, 2008 - Posted by | Civilian | , , , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. […] seems to contradict the last report from a few weeks ago, where we were quoted: “I confirm that there is now no question of our […]


    Pingback by It’s Health & Safety madness time again « Secret Scotland | Oct 3, 2008

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