I am writing in response to the letter from Mike Harwood regarding Kirkgate Market (YEP, July 9).
In particular, I would like to correct the claim that Leeds City Council ‘have closed the only car park serving Kirkgate Market’.
This is clearly incorrect. There are in fact more than 1,700 car parking spaces within five minutes’ walk of Kirkgate Market, the closest of which is the NCP car park which has a capacity of 646 and is also immediately adjacent to the market.
We have also recently announced that people spending £5 at Kirkgate Market will be able to reduce the cost of a stay of up to two hours at the NCP car park by £2.
The council accepts that developing the Victoria Gate scheme will cause disruption to the immediate environs of the site, which is often the case for any major city centre development.
However, it is the case that the closure of the Union Street car park has been planned for many years and has been the subject of significant publicity and a number of planning applications.
The outcome of this work has resulted in the council, in partnership with Hammerson, facilitating the delivery of the largest John Lewis outside of London and which will drive many millions of additional visitors to that part of the city centre and crucially create 2,000 new jobs.
Against this background I cannot agree with Mr Harwood’s assertion that the council is acting with ‘idiocy or blind malice’, but rather it is helping to place Leeds as a retail centre of national standing and to drive increased footfall for the long-term benefit of all its retailers.
Councillor Richard Lewis, Executive Member for Transport and Economy, Leeds City Council
Walk instead of buses to school
MELISSA Stowe, who has to catch 12 buses to get her daughter to and from school, surely has the definition of the nightmare school run (YEP, July 22).
Firstly, I think her daughter, Olivia, should have automatically been given a place at Methley seeing as she is already attending the nursery there. That would seem the common sense way of allocating places. However, given the circumstances, and bearing in mind that neither of Olivia’s parents drive, I would suggest walking the distance from Methley to Allerton Bywater.
There’s no need to walk over four miles via Castleford because there’s a footpath alongside the River Aire, and to the north of Mickletown there’s a footbridge over the river which is clearly visible on Google Earth. Cross this, turn right and the path will bring you out at Woodend. A further half mile and the school is on the left.
This must surely be quicker than taking three buses.
I know I’m very much a supporter of public transport, but I wouldn’t really expect anyone to do this five days a week.
The only other alternatives I can see would be to home school Olivia, learn to drive or to take taxis. The latter may, however, be prohibitively expensive, unless sharing could be arranged.
Nick Keer, Cottingley
Great effort by running bear
I have just finished reading your very good report on Sunday’s Leeds 10k run (YEP, July 21).
However, I couldn’t help but notice that you didn’t mention in your list of fancy dressers the big fluffy bear running for the children’s hospital who came in at the very end.
I just thought the runner deserved a special mention as I couldn’t imagine the temperature inside the full suit and they were having great fun dancing and giving high fives to all the crowds.
A great effort was definitely made, well done Bear.
Matthew Whitehead, Gildersome
Plane crash and past horrors
What a state this world is in! Or should I say we who are living in it.
Greed, envy, dissatisfaction and the pursuit of materialism have brought us to this – leading to disruption, wars, cruelty, starvation and horrors such as those now taking place in Palestine, Ukraine, Afghanistan, Iraq, Africa and countless other places.
It seems that we will never learn how to live together in peace and harmony.
Yet the world is a wonderful place, providing us with all we need if only we had the sense to see and appreciate it.
When dissatisfaction and disagreement arise from differing beliefs that is one thing.
However, the sickening, shooting down of the Malaysia Airlines plane in Ukraine seems to indicate that those in power in Russia have learned little or nothing from the horrors endured by their country during the Second World War.
Although nothing has yet been proved, Russia and its President, Vladimir Putin, have to be regarded as agents provocateurs who created this mess, especially after the prior problems in the Crimea.
Yet they certainly have the power to end this futile struggle which, if it continues, can only lead to much worse.
As things are, we can only anxiously ponder how things might be for our children and grandchildren in the future, and hope with all our hearts that things will improve and that men will eventually come to their senses.
Ernest Lundy, Beeston
Speed bumps - cost effective?
For some time I have been puzzled why the area of Strathmore Drive and Foundry Approach area has been saturated with speed bumps, some in streets barely 100 yards long. We can only assume that speeding was a serious problem in the area, in view of the cost involved in putting in the bumps.
Could someone from the department responsible for the idea tell us how many arrests were made for speeding in the streets prior to putting in the speed bumps and how many since? Has it been cost effective?
Walt Emsley, Gipton
Kindness vital in latter years
I thought Oliver Cross’s column (YEP, July 18), in which he talked about us “needing new thinking” on how to deal with aging and infirm people, was very profound.
Without using any medical jargon, the article really brought home the fact that compassion and kindness are a great help, and can provide reassurance when people feel lost and bewildered in their latter years.
Mavis Harrison, Saxton Gardens
Fighting is against Hamas
I would like to answer John Appleyard’s letter (YEP, July 21.
I have been in touch with the Jewish Telegraph newspaper who have not heard of a hundred British citizens going over to fight alongside the Israeli army, so where does he get his information from?
Secondly, the fighting, although regrettable, is not against the Palestinian people but against Hamas who don’t want peace at any price.
Israel is a peaceful nation but cannot do anything after continuous rocket attacks day in and day out on innocent men women and children.
The moment the rockets stop being fired on Israel is the moment all the fighting will stop.
Malcolm Shedlow, Moortown