At Ran­dom

The Oban Times - - DISTRICTS - MARTIN LAING mlaing@oban­

Let’s get rid of this dan­ger­ous cross­ing

WE RE­PORTED last week and again this week about prob­lems in con­nec­tion with the ze­bra cross­ing out­side Lidl on the Soroba Road.

Re­gard­less of the is­sues sur­round­ing plan­ning per­mis­sion and whether the cor­rect pro­ce­dures were fol­lowed, this cross­ing should not have been in­stalled.

There have been nu­mer­ous in­ci­dents and near misses. In fact, it is a mir­a­cle there has not been a very se­ri­ous ac­ci­dent there.

The cross­ing is right be­side the junc­tion with Sin­clair Drive, right be­side the en­trance to Lidl and right be­side a very busy filling sta­tion. And it is just a very short walk from a traf­fic lights pel­i­can cross­ing that is far safer to use.

It is a dan­ger­ous cross­ing in the wrong place. Let’s get rid of it as soon as pos­si­ble.

Ex­cite­ment builds for Oban Live

IT IS only just over a month now un­til Oban Live, the big­gest mu­sic festival on the West Coast.

I am so look­ing for­ward to the big event over the week­end of June 2 and 3 as it has a great line-up of acts, head­lined by To­ploader but also fea­tur­ing a host of well-known bands and per­form­ers.

Among the best of them are Sk­er­ryvore, Skip­in­nish, Manra, Tide Lines and Trail West. But there will also be mu­sic from Oban High School Pipe Band, newly re­turned from the Big Ap­ple af­ter a star­ring role in New York fa­mous Tar­tan Day pa­rade along Sixth Av­enue.

There is a range of tick­ets to suit dif­fer­ent bud­gets, with op­tions for just the Fri­day or Satur­day, or both.

Then there are dif­fer­ent prices for VIPs, adults, con­ces­sions, un­der-18s and chil­dren un­der eight (who are ad­mit­ted for free).

If we are lucky enough to have the same weather as last year, it will be a bril­liant cou­ple of days. Make sure you’re there.

Gripped by the thrill of elec­tions

I LOVE elec­tions.

I’m not es­pe­cially po­lit­i­cal but I find my­self gripped by the whole drama of cam­paigns and the way people be­come po­larised over par­tic­u­lar is­sues.

I love the cut and thrust of the ar­gu­ments and de­bates. I’m fas­ci­nated by the pas­sion which people of all par­ties dis­play as they strive to per­suade oth­ers to their points of view.

Prime Min­is­ter Theresa May has been praised and pil­lo­ried in equal mea­sure for her de­ci­sion to go to the coun­try on June 8. I thank her for do­ing so.

The gen­eral elec­tion comes, of course, just five weeks af­ter the lo­cal elec­tions here in Scot­land on May 4. I’ve heard some people grum­bling about ‘elec­tion fa­tigue’, a phrase that has now be­come a cliche. I am any­thing but fa­tigued by the prospect of two polls within weeks of each other. Just the op­po­site, in fact.

But don’t worry: I’m not go­ing to try to per­suade any­one to vote for a par­tic­u­lar party.

What I would urge, though, is every­one should go out and vote for some­one. Our demo­cratic rights have been hard- earned and there are those who would deny us them if they could. Make sure you turn out to vote on May 4 and June 8 if you pos­si­bly can.

What do you think?

Let me know by writ­ing to me at The Oban Times, Crannog Lane, Oban, PA34 4 HB, or by email to mlaing@oban­

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