We have had several letters regarding proposals for a modern transport system to serve the Leeds area.
If you will allow me to comment on the decline of the effectiveness and reliability of the Leeds Transport System since the Second World War.
When I was growing up in NE Leeds you could get a tram for just over 1p from Gipton Wood to Leeds and never have to wait more than five minutes if you missed one.
Although some of the trams were positioned away from the main carriageway, eg from Roundhay Park to Harehills and out to Temple Newsam, the old trams were set mainly in the middle of the road and couldn’t cope with the increase in road traffic on Leeds’s narrow roads, so a switch was made to buses. This was the best part of 50 years ago but the same narrow Leeds roads are still there.
Some ideas for separate bus lanes in the central reservations of Scott Hall Road and York Road were implemented but of insufficient scale to make substantial improvements. Now a trolley bus system has been put forward, still designed to use the narrow Leeds roads and then only a small section.
Unless a completely separate and dedicated system either under or above ground is provided for the Leeds area the road jams and delays will only get worse.
Alternatively the narrow Leeds arterial roads now choked with traffic could be made one way, eg Roundhay Road one way out of Leeds with Harehills Road one way in. This would require large scale engineering works with considerable disruption – and of course funding which has always been a problem whichever government has been in power.
Will the same debate still be running in 2020 or will someone make a decision that will benefit everyone?
Bleeps stop any conversation
Morning. Rang hospital several times for an appointment. No answer. Had appointment booked at my local surgery to see doctor.
Walked in past two receptionists to the electronic receptionist, pressed buttons for date of birth, another to state male. It bleeped and informed me I was seeing Doctor A and there would be 10 minutes waiting time. 40 minutes later bleep my name came up on the electronic screen telling me to go to room no. 8.
I walk in, sit down, doctor reading about me on the computer. I say stomach upset, could I have Zantac tablets. He presses buttons, bleep, and out comes a prescription and I’m on my way to town.
At the bus stop there is one other person gazing blankly at his mobile phone. Bus arrives, I get on, put pass on sensor, bleep, take ticket, arrive in town, go in supermarket, need milk and a loaf of bread, go to automatic checkout, pass milk and bread over scanner, two bleeps. Put correct money in slot, bleep, and leave.
Next stop library. Pass three librarians standing behind counter, choose book, place it in the automatic librarian, show it my card, bleep, do I want it with or without receipt? I press with receipt, bleep, leave library with my book, milk and bread and head for home, catch bus, bus pass scanned, bleep, take ticket, arrive home.
Dog greets me at the door, ears pricked up, tail wagging. I say, “Hi, dog.”
Dog says, “Woof, woof”.
First conversation I’ve had all day. I ring the hospital again, no answer.
David Newbould, Main Street, Allerton Bywater
Labour digging a welfare hole
COME THE General Election in 2015 taxpayers will not have forgotten how Gordon Brown wasted their hard earned money and plunged the country into debt.
Nor have they forgiven him for handing that cash to shirkers who claim more in Benefits than the workers who pay the bill. The “two Ed’s” may offer fuel price freezes, but anyone with half a brain knows this is a Wizard of Oz fantasy.
Miliband and Balls are bound hand and foot by their party’s disastrous record in office under Gordon Brown. “Red Ed” cannot deny that legacy. Ed Balls doesn’t want to. These two have dug themselves into a hole on welfare reform. And with the election looming they are still digging.
Malcolm Nicholson, Barwick-in-Elmet
Childish debate in Parliament
THE OTHER day I watched for quite a while a group of people on television shouting, waving papers in the air, laughing, nodding their heads and paying very little attention to the views being discussed by the other people in the room.
Was this a school play or debating society or mebbe a children’s party? No, it was in the House of Commons and I was watching the Chancellor giving his Autumn Statement. It seems the object of them being there is to never agree with the Opposition and ridicule any worthwhile suggestions, however sensible they may be.
No wonder the country is in the state it is in when the people who are running it behave like children.
Malcolm Shedlow, by email
Copping lots of endless jargon
HAS ANYONE noticed that if you see police officers speak on TV these days you get endless sentences full of meaningless jargon?
I’ve just seen someone on BBC News talking about crime figures and every other word was something like “transparency”, “outcomes”, “crime-oriented activity objectives” (which when translated apparently means arresting criminals so why not say that?) and, of course, “learning lessons” through “process reflection”.
If only as much effort was put into public servants like Nurses, Social Workers and such like doing their jobs properly and honestly instead of developing and speaking an alien language to hide behind.
T Maunder, by email
All migrants must pay at A&E
THE GOVERNMENT say they are going to charge migrants to go to A&E but not people from EU countries.
Why is this? When we go abroad we must have insurance, even if we go to a European country.
Surely, what is good for the goose is good for the gander.
We must charge all migrants for treatment.
Roger Watkinson, Oak Road, Leeds
Indigenous are paying the price
WITHOUT ATTEMPTING to go into the pros and cons of the problems in Syria, but with reference to how a further influx of refugees from there and the Balkans will affect our own situation as a country already groaning under the weight of housing shortages, hospital places, and a benefit system near collapse, there is little wonder that most people think enough is enough.
We are now informed that we have already contributed £500m in aid to Syria, more than the sum of all other EU countries put together. One has to ask why.
Could it be that long-term commercial interests have something to do with our nearly always becoming involved in situations of this kind?
An hour-long programme on BBC Five Live (December 30), discussed the situation at large. With various views being expounded relating to the humanitarian aspect, the doubtful ways in which the varying factions in the conflict have been supported, in what some may call dubious methods, when money could be better spent at home.
A contributor then posed a definitive question when he asked: “How is it that we, the British public, are never asked for our opinion?” Why indeed, when it is the indigenous population who have to suffer the consequences?
E A Lundy, by email