It is a comfort to know that Ian Tinkler does not despise any of the trustees of Shetland Charitable Trust (Readers’ Views, 2nd October).
You would not know this from his endless letters, routinely casting aspersions on our character, competence and motives.
Yet again, he asks questions that were answered long ago. I have patiently explained that the £10m allocated for the Viking Energy windfarm is an investment, not a handout; that Viking might have been generating revenue for good causes by 2017, but for the attempts at sabotage by “Sustainable” Shetland, which must have cost the project getting on for a million pounds already; that the windfarm revenue cannot now arrive before the early 2020s, again mainly because of SS; and that the “massive environmental destruction” Mr Tinkler foretells is a fantasy.
Enid Jehu asks why we didn’t have a referendum on the windfarm. It is because planning law in this country does not provide for one. It does provide for a public inquiry and I voted for that as a councillor and also lodged a private objection, because at that stage the windfarm was too big.
The democratically elected Scottish minister who considered the planning application agreed and cut the number of turbines by a third. There was no public inquiry but there was a council election in 2012 when Mr Tinkler stood as an anti-windfarm candidate. He was resoundingly defeated in that plebiscite.
We then saw lengthy legal actions where objections that would have been considered by a public inquiry were minutely examined. The objectors lost.
On a different topic, I was sorry to see Andy Holt’s slightly unchristian comments on the refugee crisis.
I had indeed said the people of Shetland and the UK as a whole had shamed the government by their generous response. The shipment of aid that recently left on Northlink, and the sums of money donated locally and nationally, testify to that.
The council convener took part in the Scottish government’s meeting to discuss what can be done to assist and councillors unanimously voted to offer what help we can, when we are asked to do so, although for obvious reasons most refugees are likely to be accommodated in towns and cities on the UK Mainland. So it is not right to say that Shetland’s contribution has been “nil”.
I hope some evil spirit has not hacked into Andy’s email, for I cannot believe he really holds such views. After all, he was welcomed here as a settler (I won’t say a refugee) himself many years ago, as I well remember, and a very good Shetland citizen he has been.