A bit of local stuff here.
Whilst passing the Dumbarton Council Chambers the other day with banners, balloons (sic) and tartan much in evidence, I wondered what the occasion was.
Had Poundland got Nescafe in again?
Had a Labour councillor had a half decent idea?
No, it turned out that former world champion motor racing champion and legend Jackie Stewart was visiting his home town to receive the freedom of West Dunbartonshire.
Jackie never misses an opportunity to emphasise that his schooldays were the most unhappy of his life through his unidentified dyslexia. He was by his own admission regarded as stupid and had few friends.
Only when he left school and was able to make his own way and create a successful path for himself did he flourish.
I suppose it’s good that he has raised awareness on this issue. He says his dyslexia was only identified when he was 42.
One of my earliest memories was attending Jackie’s wedding in Helensburgh. He married a relative of a friend of our family.
Having said all of the above, I heard him on the radio laying into the government for not doing more to support motor sport. He was absolutely scathing about Labour and Gordon Brown.
Maybe it’s just me but the Year of Homecoming seems to be characterised by people who have been successful and buggered off out of Scotland to forever pay their taxes elsewhere. In Jackie’s case it’s Switzerland and it was specifically to avoid tax that he went there.
These people have no right to tell the Scottish or UK governments how to conduct their affairs.
As for the freeman honour, one would like to think that Jackie would put his hand in his pocket to help some worthy local project.
I won’t be holding my breath.