LITTER louts who fouled a Comrie beauty spot have sent their apologies to the community.
In May, a number of local students camped near the Shaky Bridge to celebrate the end of their exams but left behind their rubbish.
The incident shocked the village with one describing it as a “disgusting mess”.
The debris, spread across a wide area, included a discarded tent, sleeping bag, food, clothing, cans, broken bottles and condoms. Word soon spread and within hours public-spirited community councillor Judith MacDowall was on site tidying up.
The careless culprits appear to have learned their lesson however, with 10 messages of contrition appearing at the end of a statement put together by Community Police Officer Ross Buchan.
“I am very sorry that you had to tidy up our mess. It won’t happen again,” said one.
“Very sorry about the mess left by me and others. We will be much more responsible next time we go camping,” said another.
And: “Sorry about all the mess of bottles and rubbish. We should have tidied it ourselves at the time.”
Opinion in the village on the apologies is divided. Whilst some told the Herald that by making the youngsters accept what they did was wrong and apologise, they will think twice about being irresponsible again, others felt that the apology was not enough and that they should have been made to tidy up somewhere else to make amends.
One resident said: “I hope they have seen the error of their ways but actions speak louder than words.
“It’s all very well them writing a letter to say sorry but they haven’t actually had to tidy anything up. It was a good hearted member of the community who cleaned up after them.
“If they were really sorry they could tidy up some other part of Comrie instead.”
Comrie Community Council chairman Andrew Finlayson thanked PC Buchan for spending time pursuing those responsible.
He said: “We know he has made his presence felt with them and their families and understand they have been left in no doubt about how disappointed we all are. We trust his judgment that the written apologies he received from all involved were sincere and we seem to be dealing with basically decent kids rendered thoughtless by an evening’s idiocy.
“Some hoped the police could have organised community litter picking or such as an act of atonement for the kids and whilst Ross did explore some possibilities we do understand that dealing out such localised ad hoc penalties is fraught with complications.’’
The apologies are on Comrie’s Community Website at www.comrie-online.co.uk.