An Argyll kind of demonstration...

I was at Dalmally this morning to meet , once again, a group of parents who are concerned about Argyll & Bute Council's plans to transport their children to Oban High School by train from the start of the new school year in August.

This proposal will, for some children, mean an increase in the school day of anything between half an hour and an hour. The school day is, for them, already much longer than for their compatriots in the town or close to it. Parents also have concerns about safe routes to school in Loch Awe village and within Oban .

The Council decided on this change to school transport last June. Only after the decision was made there any consultation with the communities. That was clearly the wrong way to do things and it has added to the anger.

On Monday morning I will be at Oban Station welcoming the first of the new timetabled trains to the town as the service is increasing to six trains a day. That is great and it is pity that the Council is tarnishing that great new opportunity with this row and with an assertion that the new service is dependent on the school contract. The original announcement of the service last year clearly demonstrates that such a claim is untrue - it was a suggestion from Scotrail after the service was agreed.

Anyway the parents and children were in fine and determined form even though these station platform was very midgey. We had a good conversation, had our picture taken for the Oban Times and were given tea and coffee by Liz who is based in the station premises along with her amazing business "Heartfelt by Liz".

If you think you know what felting is about and what can be made from wool, think again. Her achievements are stunning as are those of her pupils , but I will say no more as I must return to blip her one day.

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