Protect our health service provision
THE SALAMI slicing of hospital services in Oban has got to stop.
There is a steady, relentless trend that is seeing the superb Lorn and Islands Hospital in the town being diminished.
The latest service to be transferred to Glasgow and Paisley is the urology department. Patients requiring to see a consultant in that specialism now face an arduous and expensive round trip, sometimes for an appointment that lasts just a few minutes.
This problem is thrown into even sharper relief for those residents of our many islands who simply cannot make a 9am appointment and have to travel down the day before and stay overnight.
At a time when there is a major effort to reverse depopulation of the Highlands and Islands, it is crucial we have properly resourced essential services here.
If we want to attract inward migration to the Highlands and Islands - let alone persuading people who are already here to stay - providing good healthcare is vital.
We pay the same taxes as anyone in the central belt or other towns and cities, so we should be granted the same consideration and treatment.
As we said in our editorial comment last week: ‘If there are diffi- culties with hiring consultants, the solution should not be to abandon the attempt. People in Argyll and the Isles deserve better.’
Let’s get behind Oban Camanachd
THIS Saturday sees one of the highlights of the shinty season with the final of the Gregor Cameron Glasgow Celtic Society Cup.
Oban Camanachd will be taking on Kyles Athletic at Taynuilt Sports Field in the 113th final.
The Oban boys face a stiff challenge as Kyles are the holders and will going for five in a row. Camanachd last won the cup in 2005, though they came close a couple of years ago, losing out to Kyles in the final.
Why not roll along to Taynuilt and cheer on the boys? It all starts at 4pm.
Luxury liner sails into Oban Bay
OBAN Bay will be graced this weekend by the arrival of a major cruise liner, the Star Pride.
The luxury ship will be calling at Oban on Saturday as part of what its parent company, Windstar, calls its Gaelic Explorers cruise. This particular jaunt carries passenges from Edinburgh to Dublin, with visits to, among other ports, Kirkwall and Portree.
It should make a fabulous sight anchored in the bay.
For those who like their information to be detailed, the Star
Pride carries 212 ‘ guests’ - the company’s word, not mine - in 106 suites. She has six ‘ guest decks’ serviced by a crew of 151. The
Star Pride is registered in the Bahamas, though Windstar Cruises is headquartered in Seattle in the United States. The liner is 440 feet (134 metres) in length, has a beam of 63 feet (19 metres) and a draft of 16.5 feet (five metres). She displaces 9,975 gross registered tons and is driven by four Bergen marine diesel engines which give her a cruising speed of 15 knots.
Her passengers will be keen to spend their hard- earned - or inherited - cash in our economy, so let’s make them welcome.
Brilliant Tiree Trainspotting video
THERE is a bit of video filmed on Tiree that has gone viral... and quite right too. The video is a pastiche of the Trainspotting scene where Renton and his chums are fleeing the ‘polis’.
I won’t give anything away but it’s a must-see. Go to https:// vimeo.com/220545492 What do you think? Write to me at The Oban Times, Crannog Lane, Oban, PA34 4 HB, or by email to mlaing@ obantimes.co.uk.
The Star Pride will be calling at Oban this weekend.