A reason for the welcome
I had to go over to Gourock to do some interviews today and noticed this at the top of the Argyll Ferries ramp beside the linkspan in Dunoon. It will be the first thing that thousands of people see this weekend as they come over for the annual Cowal Games.
It might be thought that the lurid warnings alongside the message did not exactly enhance the warmth of the greeting but they are there for a very good reason.
When we first moved to Cowal in 1992 there was no ban on consumption of alcohol in the street at the Games and the result was mayhem. Without the regulation and supervision of licensed premises some people - and especially younger and more vulnerable people - were consuming far too much too quickly and the displays of public drunkness were alarming and sometimes upsetting for families and other visitors.
I remember friends who came to see us on Games weekend many years ago passing through Dunoon and arriving at Feorlean shell shocked !
The ban was a proportionate and sensible measure that has made the whole Cowal Games experience much more enjoyable for everyone. And of course there is plenty of "refreshment" available in the bars and in the beer tent at the stadium.
So congratulations to Argyll & Bute Council for taking that step many years ago , one which has made the reality of the welcome all the greater.