KIRSTEEN Paterson’s article “Former Tory MP denies flouting lockdown rules” (May 12) makes very sad reading as it would appear to demonstrate a sense of arrogance towards the local people on Skye, who are understandably concerned about the number of coronavirus deaths in one of the local care homes.

I note that the former Tory MP in question, Patrick Mercer, admits that “he and his wife have each made the 500-mile road trip twice in three weeks” and yet he claims that “there was nothing in what I did that was outside government directions”. Am I wrong in thinking that the 500 miles is one way and that each round trip would be in the region of 1,000 miles, making their total 4,000 miles?

READ MORE: Ex-Tory MP Patrick Mercer defends 500-mile Skye lockdown trip

It would be interesting to know if half of the mileage, which would be within Scotland, is within the Scottish Government’s guidelines. Perhaps Patrick Mercer’s attitude is that there is only one way, the Westminster way, and does not concern himself with the rules laid down by the Scottish Parliament.

Over the last 60 years I have enjoyed many wonderful holidays on the island of Skye. One memory, among many, that remains with me was going for an after-diner walk along towards Armadale pier when I met two American tourists. The “Skye Mist” was down and I commented that it was a rather a miserable evening, to which they responded “it is a wonderful evening, we are from Arizona and have not seen rain for nine months”.

I look forward to returning to Skye for a holiday but only when it is safe to do so, as I have no wish to be responsible, however unwittingly, for spreading the coronavirus.

Thomas L Inglis

AS ever we can depend on The National and its band of talented writers to reveal the utter contempt Tories have for Scotland. Kirsteen Paterson’s excellent report really blew away the paltry excuses for his actions from ex-Conservative MP Patrick Mercer. It clearly laid bare Mercer’s uncaring behaviour for all to see.

It annoyed me, and no doubt only added to the fears among the community on Skye that has suffered so badly in recent days.

Driving from the middle of England (where he admits he lives) and back again to “support” his self-isolating wife, who herself had travelled from England to her “home” on Skye before returning, is clearly rubbish. Yet another English Tory who feels he has the right to ignore Scotland’s government, its medical advisers and law. More power to Ms Paterson’s writing elbow – and to those of your other talented team members.

Brian Lawson