MY wife and I were delighted to receive our Covid vaccines the other day. This was carried out in a most efficient manner in our local Kilwinning Academy.

The task was undertaken by a very caring and cheerful group of NHS employees, who were indeed glad to spend more than adequate time to deal with each patient and their injection.

What I am about to say is probably very much a statement of locking the stable door after the horse has bolted.

The Government has now indicated that it has no plans to introduce a travel passport as proof of individuals having received the vaccine. The suggestion is that at some time in the future, anyone wishing to travel may have to make a personal application to their GP for documentary proof of vaccination.

I would suggest that it would not have been a demanding or even a time-consuming procedure for the Government to have considered a system whereby the individual personal Vaccine Invitation letter, could have received some form of NHS or government) stamp by the vaccinator, post-injection, to confirm the vaccination has taken place.

Perhaps this is not too late to be considered for the second and more important injection.

I realise that the vast majority of people concerned about future travel arrangements are, in the main, tourists eager to position their derrieres on sun-loungers in the usual hotspots of Europe and further afield.

What must however be noted that many individuals have family and grandchildren (in Holland, in our case ) whom we have not seen in the flesh for over 18 months.

I cannot see that when travel does resume, there will be many countries which do not insist on some form of Vaccination Travel Passport.

George Beagrie, Kilwinning.


ERIC Macdonald asks, of being bored, “Is anyone else in the same boat?” (letters, February 8).

Boredom, as defined in the dictionary, has never afflicted me. Sharing a home with 3,000 books on every subject and theme under the sun has ensured my pleasure in life, especially through these Covid lockdowns.

Every day I take a solitary walk, read The Herald, do the crosswords and then settle to the book I am reading, often taken from the shelf at random – my choice is endless.

Today it is the wee book by John Vince – Vintage Farm Machines, written in 1973 – where I observed that George Wallace and Son of Glasgow, in the 1880s, made ‘hay sledges’ and James Usher, of Berwick-upon-Tweed, patented a ‘steam engine with a mounted digger’. And what about that diagram of ‘cast, yoked and coupled ridges’? Amazing!

And moths – I need to consult about one I have just found in a vase where I put it for safety in the summer.

The next book, Special Correspondent, will be about William Russell (1820-1907) who reported from several 19th-century wars for The Times newspaper and who died ‘full of honours’. Then, after that, The Monks Of War, on Military Orders, the Crusades being a passion. Of course there is poetry every day, too, and listening to music.

Boredom? What is that? I hope that Mr Macdonald finds lots of things to occupy his time, even taking up knitting or making things from matches.

But for me, walking in a wood and reading are the best, with some day-dreaming in the mix. There is also the great delight of reading the correspondence of other letter-writers to The Herald. Perhaps Mr Macdonald will report in when he has found other ways of combating boredom?

Thelma Edwards, Hume, Kelso.

SURELY Eric Macdonald can’t be bored all the time. He clearly reads The Herald, after all.

And by a happy coincidence help is at hand. Monday’s Issue of the Day reported that researchers at the University of Seville have found that having humble house plants is beneficial to mental health and wellbeing during pandemic stay-at-home.

Just be careful if choosing from the Family Cannabaceae.

R Russell Smith, Largs.

PERHAPS Eric Macdonald’s boredom would be relieved by trying Sudoku, which I am told is solved by logic. I have tried in vain to relieve mine by searching for his pastime Suduko.

David Miller, Milngavie.

I APPRECIATE that the letter from Eric MacDonald is whimsical, and my response is not intended to take him to task.

However, Mr MacDonald is obviously fortunate enough to be in a position where he can take such a view, as am I, though there is a vast number of our population in a more perilous and worrying situation.

These include families with children who are homeless and living in temporary accommodation, whose number have in the past year soared by 40 per cent and whose plight you highlight in The Herald earlier this week.

Then there are the over 100,000 families in the UK who have had the trauma of losing a family member to this dreadful pandemic, plus the relatively lucky ones who have recovered, though many of them are now living with the effects of long Covid.

Add to these all those who have lost their livelihood and for many of them for the first time having to rely on the state and/or food banks to survive.

We also have those whose life-saving operations or crucial diagnosis have had to be cancelled, plus the boom in mental health issues affecting all ages and the dramatic affect on our children’s education which will have ramifications for them in future years to come.

I could go on, but it is disheartening, and I guess you get the picture now anyway.

This is therefore a very stressful, worrying time for many of us and the role of our Government both at Westminster and Holyrood is do all it can to help and focus 100 per cent to support those who need it most.

James Martin, Glasgow.