Following their first appearance in court, campaigners against the extortionate toll on the Skye Bridge with multiple charges against them have been advised by their legal team to scale down their activities.
Over 180 people charged with non-payment of the toll had their cases heard in Dingwall Sherrif court last Friday. Their council advised them not to refuse to pay anymore to avoid contempt of court charges although they should request hand written receipts from the bridge office so that they can claim their money back from the Skye Bridge Company when they win their case.
A statement issued by SKAT (Skye and Kyle Against the Tolls), said that 'paid under duress' should be written on the counterfoil of the handwritten receipt and pointed out that the till receipt issued by the toll booth attendants was not a proper receipt. Protesters were also advised tht they could pay their toll with small denomination coins.
SKAT are organising a 'New Wave' protest for Saturday the 24th February at which those cited at Dingwall will walk across the bridge followed by new individuals in cars who want to say 'no' to the tolls.
The Sherrif, James Fraser, conceded that whatever his findings were they would be challenged by one side or the other and would inevitably go to a higher court "It is one of those cases where I'm damned if I do and damned if I don't".
Copyright © Ray Shields, 1996.
Most recent revision, 15 February 1996.