AS a founder-member of the Billy Connolly Appreciation Society (founded 1968 in The Saracen Head pub in the Gallowgate), I write to alert fellow members – and the general Scottish public – to the fact that an impostor is appearing on television who claims to be the Big Yin but, from his comments and the cut of his jib, cannot possibly be the genuine article.

This old wiseacre does look like Billy and does seem to know quite a lot about the childhood, working-life and general provenance of Billy – but his patter is (as Glaswegians used to say) "like watter"; it just runs . It's almost as if he's reading from a script or is being prompted to spout the meretricious claptrap he does, like a real life, unfunny, IM Jolly.

This charlatan gives out with homilies on ageing, approaching death and life's problems and how to deal with them. Anyone who remembers – as I do – Billy from those riotous days in The Scotia and The Sarry Heid and remembers the very un-PC jokes and patter we all, including the Big Yin, indulged in, can only suffer a serious bout of the boak watching this guy. Like a big hairy agony aunt – or uncle.

He talks about how "the mores" of society change when speaking about his year in "the yairds with all its effing and blinding”. "The mores"! If he'd said that when a welder his mates would have thought he was talking about something happening the day after today.

Our Big Yin is being used (yes, by the usual suspect, the Beeb) to disavow and somehow distance himself from the things that so endeared him to Glasgow's (and Scotland's) working class. They're trying to sanitise him. They may succeed – but most of us will remember the real Billy – Glesca's beloved son, who, in wur ain langwidge, showed the world that we could be as funny as "bleep". Aye, sweary-words an' aw.

From the Glesca folk that love him goes the message: "Whit the (bleep's happened tae ye, big man? Tell aw yer advisers, minders an' producers tae get tae (bleep), an' gaun yersel.”

John McInnes, Glasgow G42.

The magic circles

I WANTED to share a story with you that has spanned nearly 70 years of reading of The Herald. It started back in 1944 when my mother, now 94, married my father and introduced him to what was then known as the Glasgow Herald.

As farmers we paid particular attention to the farming, weather and business sections. Since my father passed away nearly 35 years ago my mother started to circle sections of The Herald that she wished to highlight to me. She would write comments alongside particular articles of interest and star items she wanted back so she could cut out and put in her scrap book. Just recently I found the constant markings and pen across the paper rather irritating and I asked her to stop doing it, which she wasn’t that pleased about.

What has since evolved is a realisation that I actually miss her scrawling across the paper and smiling as I get an insight into what she found interesting and funny and that she had wanted to share with me too. I have asked her to start circling things again, which she is delighted about, and made me reflect on how The Herald has connected us for the last 50 years in what is now a very different world to the one back in 1944.

John Paterson, Balfron.

Swearing by seaweed

AS I was born and raised in the Hebrides, I am able to assure Elizabeth Mueller (Letters, June 24) that the use of seaweed as fertiliser for potatoes has been a widely known practice for centuries and is still practised today. The fresh seaweed left by the high spring tides was carried to crofts in creels on one’s back (imagine the weight of that). The seaweed greatly enhanced the flavour of the potatoes.

Good use was also made of edible seaweed including carrageen, which was a favourite for gastric problems.

My ancestors made good use of all natural products including herbs/plants for medicinal purposes and I am certain they would approve if they knew seaweed is now popular in smoothies.

Mary Taylor, Bothwell G71.

Always never enough

TOO Much and Never Enough is the title of a book by Donald Trump's niece, Mary L Trump, that his lawyers are trying to suppress.

Recent Oxfam research reporting that "26 billionaires own as many assets as the poorest half of the world's population", revived memories of our lovely erstwhile neighbours Robert and Mary, who met an American millionaire while holidaying in Florida.

Charmed by their Scottish accent, he took a shine to them, inviting the couple to a party on his luxury yacht.

As guests on board continuously voiced their frustration at a stock market dip jeopardising further acquisitions of yachts and properties, Mary wondered innocently: "But there must come a time, surely, when you feel you have enough?"

The shocked silence that ensued, was finally broken by a whispered "There's NEVER enough."

This phrase, now a byword in our household, is invoked at each new report of unbridled greed.

James Stevenson, Auchterarder.