David Stewart MSP

Archive for May 2009

End the Kessock Queues

29 May 2009

That was the plea from the North’s three Labour MSPs this week as they launch a campaign to persuade the Government to take action on the growing congestion on the Kessock Bridge.

Their campaign to ease congestion is underway, already with the backing of people in Ross-shire.

The MSPs will also seek meetings with Transport Scotland, the Highland Council, HITRANS as well as local businesses to push the issue up the political agenda.

Peter Peacock said: “The Kessock Bridge is a key transport route which links the north to Inverness and beyond.

“Over the last twenty years, travelling to and from East Ross, the Black Isle and further north has been revolutionised by its existence.

“We want to find a long term solution to the growing problem and get the issue up the political agenda and we need people to make their voices heard if the share our view.

“As every year goes past the frustration of drivers’ grows.

“The queues now regularly extend back from the Longman Road roundabout right across the bridge and, although moving slowly across, are reminiscent of the queues that used to form either side of the old Kessock ferry crossing.”

Rhoda Grant said: “Most commuters from Ross-shire who use the bridge daily to travel to and from work have found their travel time has increased, along with the volume of traffic.

“Waiting times of fifteen, twenty minutes to cross the bridge aren’t uncommon.

“The long term solution is likely mean some kind of grade separated junction at the south end of the bridge, as well as park and ride schemes and the like on the north side and further improvements to rail and bus services to help ease the traffic pressure.

“Any improvements won for the Inverness trunk link route will also help.”

David Stewart said: “Amazingly the Kessock Bridge where it meets the roundabout on the Longman Road was not even mentioned in the Strategic Transport Projects Review as being an issue.

“As matters stand nothing is even going to be considered before 2020, but the delays on the bridge, which is one of the main arteries to the North and South of Scotland, will only increase if the problem isn’t addressed.

“There will not be a quick fix to the problem.

” We know from responses we received to a small survey in the area just how fed up people are with the problem and we will be giving people the chance to show their support over the coming weeks.

The MSPs also urged people to give them their experiences of using the bridge.

“This can be done by visiting their website, http://www.handimsps.org.uk

 and clicking on the ‘End the Kessock Queues’ link.

The petition can also be accessed via – http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/endthekessockqueues/index.html

Written by davidstewart

May 29, 2009 at 10:08 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Fly the flag for Caley Thistle.

22 May 2009

That’s the message from die hard supporter and MSP David Stewart ahead of Inverness Caley Thistle’s crucial game with Falkirk.
He’s calling on the Highland Council to fly an ICT flag from the Town House during Saturdays game.
Caley Thistle need to take at least a point to secure their place in the Scottish Premier League and the Highlands and Islands MSP is urging the all of the local community to do their part to back the side.
Mr Stewart said: “This is much more than another game of football, its about preserving the status of the game in the
Highlands and Islands.
“Having a top flight club in the Highlands provides a huge boost to the local communities and
economies when visiting sides come to Inverness.
“I’m urging the Highland Council to use our city landmarks to show their backing for the team.
“Caley Thistle flags have flown from the top of the Town House after victories over Celtic in the Scottish Cup.
“If we secure our status in the Scottish Premier League, that will certainly be something to celebrate and worthy of marking in this way.
Mr Stewart added: “It’ll be stressful afternoon, but when the tough gets tough, the tough gets going.
“Our players need look no further then Terry Butcher as a role model who epitomised courage, dedication and leadership as a player.
“I believe that the Caley Thistle fans will be the secret weapon, cheering every kick of the ball.
“At the final whistle, I’m convinced that we will have a team of heroes who deserve their own chapter in the history of the club.”
George Fraser, Chairman of ICT said: “This is an excellent idea and I’m fully behind David Stewart’s plans for the whole of Inverness and the wider Highlands to get behind the team on Saturday. ”

Written by davidstewart

May 22, 2009 at 8:23 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Launch of David Stewart’s Victims’ Commissioner Bill

single click on the video to play it

Written by davidstewart

May 8, 2009 at 9:23 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Launch of Member’s Bill to create a Commissioner for Victims’ Rights in Scotland

Scottish Labour’s David Stewart formally launched his Member’s Bill to create a Commissioner for Victims’ Rights in Scotland.
His bill was backed by Victim Support Scotland at an event at the Scottish Parliament.
At the launch Scottish Labour Leader Iain Gray said:
“Labour has a proud record of defending the rights of victims, we introduced news laws that protected victims of crime giving evidence in court, we allowed victims to get their say in
sentencing and Labour now continues to stand up for victims with this bill.
“Labour will always promote victims’ rights and this Bill is a next logical step.
David Stewart, the Bill’s proposer said:
“Crime affects all our communities across Scotland. It blights families and damages lives and causes some of the most vulnerable members of our community to live in fear.
“Prisoners in Scotland have their own Commissioner – it’s time that victims of crime had someone to speak for them.
“I hope that my Bill will go a long way to helping to address this imbalance.”
Labour has been backed by Victim Support Scotland, Ron Daniel, the National Chair of Victim Support Scotland said:
“We believe, given out vast experience of dealing with hundreds of thousands of victims and witnesses of crime over the past 25 years that such a post is justified. We do acknowledge the considerable advances made within the criminal justice system in Scotland which do place victims closer to the heart of that system. The appointment of a Victims’ Commissioner would be a further step along that path.”
Importantly, the Bill is being backed by victims of crime.
Anita* (see notes), who attended today’s launch spoke of being attacked by her husband and said that she hoped that a commissioner could be introduced.
She said:
“Without the assistance of Victim Support Scotland I would never have been able to cope. They have been there for me when I needed them and have helped me rebuild my life and that of my family.
“Even so, there are issues which I encountered along the way which do need to be addressed and which need the attention of someone dedicated to championing victims’ rights. That is why a Victims’ Commissioner should be appointed.
“After all, there is a Commissioner to represent the interests of children and young people so why not one to develop and build more rights for the victims of crime.”

Written by davidstewart

May 7, 2009 at 10:22 am

Posted in Uncategorized