LENNIE Pennie ("Standardising Scots won’t make it more of a language", The Herald, August 26) is exactly right in calling attention to the fact that the Scots language exists in a variety of different forms: this is indeed one of its most distinctive and most fascinating characteristics.

Each of those forms, though some more extensively than others, has been developed as a literary dialect, with features of orthography, grammar and vocabulary which clearly indicate its regional provenance. As an unusual demonstration of this, a brilliant initiative by the Lewis Carroll Society of New York to mark the sesquicentenary of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland in 2015 was the commissioning of a galaxy of new translations of this classic work, which eventually included no fewer than seven versions of the book in clearly differentiated forms of Scots: Shetland, Caithness, the North-East, the Borders, Ayrshire, Glasgow and Ulster; besides two, one more archaic and recondite in its vocabulary than the other, in non-regional literary Scots.

It would be absurd to argue that a language of which the exuberant development of the various dialects is such a conspicuous and productive feature should be “standardised”, if this is taken to imply the imposition of a uniform set of rules governing spelling and grammar to which all speakers and writers of the language would be expected to conform. There is, however, another point to be made.

All too often in social media, and in print too, we see passages which have obviously been composed in English and - in the imagination of the writers - made into “Scots” by simply misspelling some of the words: a practice comparable to the formerly (but thankfully no longer) common misconception among English and American actors that a few Rs and glottal stops added to their normal accents made them sound Scottish.

From the fact that the mither tongue exists in many different forms, it does not follow that “anything goes” in the writing of it: Scots is not misspelt English, and by the same token misspelt English is not Scots. An agreed “standardisation” which at least went as far as to acknowledge that the language is not something which you can make up as you go along would be very useful.

Derrick McClure, Aberdeen.

Read more: Should we really standardise the Scots language?

Missing out on renewables jobs

YOUR recent article "Renewables industry warns that new 'super pylons' are crucial" (The Herald, August 24) contains the statement from Scottish Renewables that "we must build more power lines, pylons and substations". By use of the word "we" it is reasonable to presume that it is Scottish-based manufacturers that the trade body expects to provide the required grid infrastructure.

Given that expectation, can Scottish Renewables inform us of the contribution of Scottish industry to the existing renewables manufacturing industry? Can it tell us, for example, how many of Scotland's many thousands of onshore wind turbines have been manufactured in Scotland to date? And how many of the hundreds of offshore wind turbines operating or planned to operate in Scotland's seas have been or will be built in Scotland?

Then there are the sophisticated ships used to install the offshore turbines. How many of these have been constructed in Scottish shipyards? And the highly specialist vessels that lay the undersea cables? And the many thousands of kilometres of these cables needed to bring electricity ashore?

As I suspect that the answer to all of these questions is either "hardly any" or "none'" can Scottish Renewables tell us what hope it has that any of the much-needed grid infrastructure will be manufactured in Scotland?

The repeated assertion of the Scottish Government that Scotland is the UK's renewable energy powerhouse may be relevant to the wind, rain, sun, land and sea our country provides, but its failure to develop and sustain the essential infrastructure manufacturing base might suggest that in reality our powerhouse is more akin to a dud battery.

John Riddell, Fairlie.

Stop ticket office closures

I WRITE to highlight the fact that the proposed closures of rail ticket offices will have a devastating impact on blind and partially sighted people’s ability to travel independently: stopping people getting to work, health appointments, and seeing friends ("Explained: Ticket office closures and public consultation", heraldscotland, August 30).

Ticket offices are not just about selling tickets. They provide a reliable first point of contact for many kinds of staff assistance, such as arranging sighted guidance through the station and safely onto the train, to advising on any changes to journeys.

Modernisation of our railways doesn’t just mean apps and touchscreens; modernisation means inclusivity and not leaving anyone behind. These proposals must be scrapped.

Jean Cherrie, Glasgow.

Foul play from World Rugby

AT last, someone closely connected to rugby has written of the ridiculous situation in which Scotland now finds itself ("World Rugby’s incompetence robs Scotland of fair chance in France", Martin Hannah, Herald Sport, August 30).

Irrespective of the fact that it is Scotland, on this occasion, who are most affected by the early draw made on rankings from three years ago, it is surely absurd in principle, in any sport and at any level, to have a competition draw made so early. What on earth is World Rugby’s rationale for so doing? It also seems a bit odd that when the draw was made the teams ranked first, fifth and ninth, therefore top of their respective groupings, are all in the same group. Is this also a part of the regimented approach that World Rugby appears to employ when making draws?

Mr Hannan uses the word "incompetence"; I’d add the word "absurd" to his analysis of World Rugby’s approach.

Willie Towers, Alford.

A painful Tattoo

I AM unclear why BBC Scotland keeps repairing something which isn't broken.

It was bad enough Sportscene Results with Jonathan Sutherland, Michael Stewart and Steven Thomson being replaced by David Currie, Julie Fleeting and Cammy Bell; but now Bill Paterson's superb commentary at the Edinburgh Military Tattoo has, inexplicably, been replaced by JJ Chalmers and Jennifer Reoch.

What a shame there is no Scottish Points Of View programme.

John V Lloyd, Inverkeithing, Fife.