IT IS surely tragic that the Council has decided that the summer events – the music festivals – have to be discontinued. What an inspiration they have been as hundreds of thousands of people have joined the celebrations of both classical and popular music.
Unfortunately, once again, the quality of life of ordinary people must take a down-turn, in the name of austerity – and all for the lack of less than a couple of hundred thousand pounds. On the one hand, the city boasts to be awash with money but not for a couple of festivals that were once the pride of the county.
Again, we see the tale of two cities emerge as the city boasts a wave of prosperity, and eight more shops than Manchester, all the roads in Otley are to be resurfaced in time for ‘The Grand Depart’ and our Arena continues to add a 10 per cent Booking (Fee) Tax on all card purchases, which must make much more than the cost of Party In The Park. Will ‘them that have’, the retail moguls etc, as ‘honoured partners’ of the city, be prepared to dip into their trousered largesse, and ‘put something back into the community’ (as the jargon goes)? More than that, will the Council put some more pressure on the ‘takers’ to sponsor these events?
Contact your councillors and lobby for the retention of these world class events. Unless the ‘flag-ship ventures’ of the city (as they call themselves) are telling porkies, one does not need to have a Doctorate in Mathematics to know that the cash is there – in shed loads.
B Smith, Leeds
Jobless figures manipulated
MR Jack Brown’s letter (Yorkshire Post, February 22) reminds me of the first lecture I received on unemployment statistics when I was a student.
The numbers recorded as unemployed included the people not out of work, but those eligible for benefits. Since married women seldom paid the full ‘stamp’ and juveniles (under 21) were regarded as the responsibility of their parents, neither group appeared in the numbers recorded as unemployed. The women, in clogs and shawls, standing outside the mill gates in Northern textile towns were invisible to the statisticians.
If today’s figures are manipulated (and I suspect that they are) then there will be inaccuracies in estimates of changes in productivity for without accurate data on the number in jobs we cannot make more than ‘guesstimates’ of productivity levels.
Allan Davies, Heathfield Court, Grimsby
Why so many councillors?
THE YEP asked the question: what can we do to improve this great city of ours?
For me I would start at the top and ask why we need so many councillors? At the same time I would ask the residents of the Lingfield and Fir Tree estates if they know who represents them on the council because you never hear from them. Alwoodley and Moortown are represented by three Conservative councillors.
The next question is what have councillors done for your estates or your community in the past? In the past 12 months the local health centre has been taken away, the local pub has been turned into a Mosque and the community centre is now a funeral parlour.
Has anyone heard from them or noticed any change? They were elected with your votes, but I am sorry to say they have done nothing to improve our community or estates.
It is about time we voted for a change. We could reduce our representatives down to one. Let’s look into this; maybe along with the savings of reducing the amount of councillors we could improve local services.
LE Slack, Lingfield View, Leeds
Nearly killed by idiotic motorist
ON SUNDAY February 16 at about 7.20pm I was cycling home along Kirkstall Road on my bike with lights on and wearing a reflective jacket when I heard a motorist coming towards me at speed. He cut across in front of me.
If I had not braked hard I would be dead or in hospital now. This was by far the closest near miss of my life face to face, and all because some idiot could not spare a few seconds to be safe. Thankfully this driver is in a minority or there would be few of us still cycling.
AE Hague, Bellbrooke Grove, Leeds
Second class PO complaints
SANDRA MORRIS of Moortown (YEP, February 21) complains of the unkind Post Office for not delivering her post.
What planet is she living on? The Post Office do not work for nothing. A few years ago my ageing forgot to put a postage stamp on my Christmas card. I had to pay a small sum to get my card. I could afford it so it was not a problem.
Mrs V Bedford, Pudsey
£28m per mile not good value
THE LAST time I looked at the YEP trolleybus poll the percentage against was 75% (13th February). That’s ¾ of YEP readers who don’t want a trolleybus.
There are many reasons for this: ugly poles and overhead wires spoiling our attractive city, small businesses adversely affected, cyclists forced to share the trolleybus lane, mature trees felled and green oases overrun, gardens compulsorily purchased, £250 million being spent but none of it to improve public transport or roads in other areas. People do not consider £28m per mile for a single route to be good value for money.
Coun Lewis must realise that a large majority of people are against it, yet he continues to deny this and to promote a scheme using vehicles which are limited to one route where the wires are fixed, when the latest technology allows for modern, eco-friendly buses which, at much lower cost, can go anywhere, do not need poles and wires, can be used on any route (and can be re-routed in the event of fallen trees across the road, as happened on Headingley Lane last week) and which can be built in this country, unlike trolleybuses which will have to be imported. A letter appeared in the YEP yesterday about the lack of democracy and openness in modern politics. Here is another example of politicians ignoring the people they are supposed to represent. Metro say they do not have time to release the results of their consultations conducted last year, even when requested to do so under the ‘Freedom of Information’ Act - that tells its own story. Leeds needs a transit system which serves the entire city, does not require the destruction of our heritage and does not result in a fortune being spent on something which is such poor value.
S Sleeman, Trenic Crescent, Leeds
Clean sweep by volunteers
COULD I, through your paper, thank the group of enthusiastic volunteers who turned out on Saturday on the first litter pick by the Tadcaster Litter Collectors’ group. It was very heartening to have so many of Tadcaster’s young people getting involved and shows we have many young people here willing to give up their time to help improve the town. A dozen of us spent two hours clearing the river bank and collected 14 bin bags of plastic bottles, tin cans and various other pieces of rubbish - an indication of the need to carry out these cleans as plastic causes so many problems in the environment. This was our first organised clean and we hope that when the people see the difference that can be made, then they will want to be part of our group. If we can attract enough people then eventually the whole town will be covered and Tadcaster can start being somewhere to be proud of. If anyone reading this would like to join us then please get in contact through our Facebook page or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
David March, Springhill Court, Tadcaster