Check out today’s YEP letters
The girl in the spotty dress
Stuart Clark, Garforth
Bert Hardy who took the photograph of the girl in the spotty dress at Blackpool was a former Sergeant and Captain combat cameraman in the Army Film and Photographic Unit, serving in Europe and the Far East.
It was taken in answer to a challenge to produce a front cover picture with an ‘ordinary camera’ instead of the his favourite work tool the Leica. As one of the few former member of the AFPU, I present a talk ‘Photographers At War’ featuring the little known existence and work of the Unit in WW11, many former members later becoming the movers and shakers of the post war TV, film and photojournalism industry, Len Chetwyn becoming one of your chief photographers.
Later, as a civilian, Bert produced iconic images of the Korean War. The girls on the prom feature in my talk, causing me to wonder what became of them. Now local audiences will be especially delighted to know one was from Featherstone.
Secretary of State should put the NHS first
Councillor Peter Gruen, Councillor for Crossgates & Whinmoor Ward, Chair of the Adult Social Services, Public Health & NHS Scrutiny Board, Leeds City Council
An old joke is doing the rounds: the NHS has more pilots than British Airways. (Yes, I know, the old ones are the best ones).
In my experience, as the Health Scrutiny Chair in Leeds, no one takes risks and introduces new ideas, different processes, initiatives or medicines without a proper trial first.
So, for example, Leeds West CCG piloted seven-day working in a number of GP practises, with their agreement.
Usually such pilots are then evaluated and possibly tweaked before a general roll-out may follow.
So, this is the question. In an environment when pilots are the rule why would Mr Hunt not jump on the good idea to trial his contract in a few areas and have it independently evaluated?
I really think this could have been his ‘get out of jail’ card and shows that he is motivated by other reasons than trying to find genuine solutions. The strike could have been averted!
It now needs statesmanship and thinking outside the normal political constraints and if Mr Hunt is not willing to put the NHS first, his time as Secretary is fast coming to an end.
Brian Ormondroyd, Leeds 29
Jeremy Hunt versus our doctors. Which side are you on?
The majority of British people support the doctors. Makes sense. We all need to call the doctor some time in our life.
A call for sense, common sense. Reopen talks between all the parties concerned. Or do we wish for a USA style ‘health’ service? Pay as you go or on the never, never?
Christine Halsall, Leeds 29
I am writing to send my whole hearted support to the junior doctors in their dispute with the government.
We need our doctors more than ever, as the NHS struggles to cope with an ageing population.
The NHS is a brilliant resource which should be treasured and protected at all costs.
Confusion over official figures
Jon Trickett, Hemsworth MP
I was recently contacted by parents whose son tragically died in 2014.
Rory James Embling, a fit and healthy sportsman and a practicing solicitor, had a sudden and unexpected heart arrhythmia and died.
His parents have since supported the charity Cardiac Risk in the Young (Cry) and have to date raised a fantastic £7,600 and will continue to raise as much as they can. This money will be used to run a heart screening session to test if individuals have any indicators that point towards a heart condition.
Every week it is estimated that 12 young people in the UK die from an undiagnosed heart condition.
That’s 600 deaths a year. However, there is confusion over the official figures for exactly how many young people are affected by sudden cardiac death.
I have questioned the Government over this discrepancy because until we acknowledge the true scale of the sudden cardiac deaths and roll out screening nationally, young people will continue to die from this condition unnecessarily.
UK can hold EU together
John Cole, Shipley
As my previous letters have indicated, I am strongly for voting to remain “IN” on June 23rd.
President J.F. Kennedy famously stated in his inauguration speech: “Ask not what your country can do for you but rather ask what you can do for your country”.
In recent years in Europe we have seen the dangerous growth of nationalisms. An insidious right wing patriotism is on the move. Think Europe, 1930s.
The EU, with its commitment to “an ever closer union of the peoples of Europe” (note, “peoples”. NOT “governments”) is a bulwark against these narrow nationalisms.
So for me, a strong argument for “In” is the way the EU can hold in check destructive, self-seeking tendencies.
It would be a tragedy for Europe and civilised society if the UK departing the EU were to lead to fragmentation of the whole community project and the unpicking of 70 years of progress.
There is a role here of the UK – an altruistic one – of remaining within the EU and working both to reform it and hold it together.
I see us as a vital counterweight to other players who might otherwise dominate.
M Meeson, Leeds
Imagine, President Obama has ordered the removal of the Mexican border controls and is to allow millions of migrants into the country, not only Mexico but all who wish for a better life in the “land of the free”, plus the Government will be controlled from Canada.
Does this sound familiar? Well this is exactly what is happening to Great Britain, and yet he sides with the “yes” vote for the forthcoming referendum.
I would suggest the President keeps his opinions to himself, and that the UK can prosper out of the EU allowing the UK to trade with the rest of the world without the restrictions the EU.
Help be the difference
Christine Walker, by email
If you looked at me you probably wouldn’t guess that I live with excruciating pain every day.
I have an invisible condition, arthritis and I’ve had this for over 30 years.
This disease is often dismissed as minor aches and pains.
However, my condition effects every aspect of my life and stops me from being spontaneous.
Over the years, I’ve had support from the charity Arthritis Research UK which has been a lifeline for me –you might not have heard of the charity before, but its organisers understand how all 10 million of us are living with daily pain.
I am one of many who have benefited directly from their research.
I have taken part in a hand trial based at the Arthritis Research UK Primary Care Centre.
The trial recruited 257 people like myself, with hand osteoarthritis, to test the effectiveness of joint protection and exercises.
The trial made an incredible difference to my everyday life and it inspired me to manage my condition and remain active.
I’ve lived with my condition for a long time but arthritis doesn’t stand still and although I’m managing my pain now, I’m worried about what the future may hold.
The charity recognises that whilst they are experts in research, they’re never going to know what it’s like to live with this condition on a daily basis, which is why they want our help.
Despite all the breakthroughs the charity has had we still need better treatments, quicker diagnosis and a cure.
Arthritis Research UK cannot do this alone, the charity and its researchers need people like us who are living with the condition to join them to make a difference.
During April and May, Arthritis Research UK’s ‘Be the Difference’ campaign gives us all rare access to arthritis experts – researchers and other people living with arthritis.
This is a unique opportunity to hear them talking about how to stop joint pain now and in the future.
To take part in the campaign go to www.arthritisresearchuk.org/bethedifference