Nicola Sturgeon'S latest analysis on the future of state pensions (Evening Times, May 20) neglects some fundamental points.

The most important of these is that, were a future independent Scottish Government to reverse the increase in the state pension age - as she suggests it would - it would have to find billions of pounds from other budgets to do so.

Such a move would cost Scotland around £6 billion between 2026/27 and 2035/36 in extra pension costs, as well as around £9bn in lost GDP due to people retiring earlier than they would have otherwise.

The fact is that life expectancy is projected to increase across all parts of the UK - including in Scotland. The UK Government cannot ignore the demographic challenges facing the country and, should there be an independent Scottish Government in the future, neither could it - particularly considering that over the next 20 years the proportion of pensioners in Scotland is expected to increase faster than in the rest of the UK.

Steve Webb MP Minister for Pensions Department for Work and Pensions

Square car ban

Good on Les Trueman (Evening Times, May 27) for speaking up over the council's daft traffic ban in George Square.

How many more rules will the council dream up without consulting us, the voters?

This is exactly the reason voters are turning to parties like UKIP. People are sick and tired of being dictated to.

Jean Alexander Via e-mail


The attack by Mike Moss (Letters, May 26), on those who are objecting to the planned hostel in Burnbank Gardens speaks volumes about his own prejudice, and total ignorance of the facts regarding the planned development.

The plans are to locate up to 40 males with addiction problems and, in some cases, criminal records into the heart of a predominantly elderly, residential area.

There could not be a less appropriate location in the entire city for such a facility.

D Edgar Woodside