YEP Letters: June 27

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Have your say

DS BOYES (YEP, June 23) asserts that extremism in Birmingham classrooms can be laid at the door of all faith schools, therefore all should be made secular.

The Birmingham schools in question were all ‘secular’ and not faith based, so that line of argument falls on its face.

Faith schools, so popular with many parents, also pay taxes, are constantly under attack from a small vociferous minority whose sole aim is to banish religion from public space and now use extremism as an excuse.

The reality is that for years the Left’s particular addiction to multiculturalism and diversity meant Labour turned a blind eye to radicalism in many immigrant communities, for fear of causing offence.

This encouraged ‘separatism’ and the clinging to tribal cultures alien to our own values. Now we pay the price for that folly.

The appeasement of Islamic radicalism has gone on for years. Militants (not the majority of Muslims) have taken full advantage of British tolerance and judged it as weakness, holding our way of life in contempt, while taking advantage of our freedoms they enjoy. Jihadists come and go as they please, recruiting freely online. British jihadists fighting abroad should be refused re-entry into the UK, for our own safety. Our Left elites now wring their hands in despair, blaming all faith schools, and not their own dogma of failed multiculturalism.

Hatred and barbarity are in our midst, and probably here to stay.

Brian Johnston, Burmantofts

No collection is just rubbish

IT IS ironic that in the very week you should publish a series of articles whereby our Leeds City Council is congratulating itself on its recycling efforts, our back street in Harehills has just celebrated the second month in which the scheduled monthly collection of the green bins has not occurred – so, certainly no contribution to their efforts here!

There are now three piles of newspapers three feet high in our hallway, plus sundry piles of cardboard and plastic containers in the kitchen, which we are loath to put in the black bin but they are occupying valuable space, as the collections due on the Saturdays May 17 and June 14 never took place, nor on the following Saturdays either (bins were put out again in case they should return).

From past experience there is no point in phoning them to ask why, as I don’t appreciate paying to listen to an endless recorded message saying “we value your call, please hold the line” followed by insipid music by such as Frank Sinatra.

So, perhaps this letter to the YEP may be more effective! The street concerned is Back Berkeley Avenue – any comments, Leeds City Council?

John Mollett, Harehills

Safety comes before the pole

It was with interest and sadness that I read of the taking down of the Otley Maypole (YEP, June 25).

If the experts consider it dangerous, then safety needs to come first. It would cause considerable problems if it fell down. Nearly 20 years ago, working as an engineer for the Leeds City Council Parks Department, I was asked by the then Director of Parks, John Tinker, if we could get the maypole’s weather vane working again.

As the pole was then being repainted, a large hydraulic platform hoist was on site so we were able to bring it down. At that height it was like two ears of corn moving about in the breeze!

The weather vane itself had been fastened with four large set screws and it is to the eternal credit of those who previously installed it that they had liberally coated the threads with grease so they had not seized up. The unit was removed and taken to the workshop where the weather vane was stripped, cleaned, repaired, greased and given a liberal painting ready for refitting. We went back into the hoist and up the pole, the heavy weather vane being manhandled back on to the top of the maypole with difficulty, given that even at maximum height the hoist was about two feet lower than the pole and working space was limited.

Once in place the set screws, together with lashings of grease, secured the unit firmly in place. Ever since, when passing through Otley I always looked up to see if the vane was still turning in the wind. It was, but no longer. Interestingly, the photo in the YEP shows that the road was closed as the maypole was brought down. When we did our work there were only a few cones surrounded by parked cars. Health and safety had yet to come.

Paul Thompson, Scarcroft

Lack of parking is hard on trade

I’M SURE many readers will agree that the many traders in Leeds market are having to suffer financially for lack of parking facilities to customers.

Who on earth wants to be walking any distance with a bag on either arm? Why didn’t Leeds City Council make alternative arrangements before the parking close to the markets were closed? They must have known this would create hardship for both the traders and the public.

I do have a suggestion for the council: either allow the public to park on the meters for half price or, better still, allow them to park free for at least three hours per day. Let’s face it, it is a clanger on the part of the council.

For goodness sake, give the market traders a break.

T Valentine, Leeds

Union flag was a football SOS

The Royal Tulip Hotel in Brazil where the England World Cup squad stayed was right to fly the Union flag upside down (YEP, June 20).

It is permissible to do this as a distress signal. The subsequent performance of the England team justified their decision. Had they inverted the cross of St George, then no one would have noticed.

Lin Pass, Leeds

It’s not really the England flag

With regard to the recent letters about flags, I was of the opinion that the flag of England was a centralised red cross (St George’s Cross) on a white background, therefore impossible to fly upside down.

The red, white and blue multi-cross affair is the flag of the United Kingdom, (the Union Flag or Jack) which can mistakenly be flown upside down but should not be used to represent an England team.

B Peach, Kippax

Life is not just a fashion parade

Malcolm Nicholson wrote about his dislike of middle-aged men wearing knee-length baggy shorts and said they should be locked up (YEP, June 24).

Well, sorry Malcolm, but I am one of said men and I wear them to keep cool, not look cool. So throw me in the cell!

What am I supposed to do in hot weather, melt and wear long trousers just to ensure that your obviously delicate optical senses are not offended? I dread to think what he wears in the same warm weather, top hat, dinner suit and dickie bow tie maybe?

Life is not a fashion parade, Malcolm. When the weather is warm my knobbly knees are here to stay, so learn to deal with it!

Steve Adams, Leeds

Cricket stumped for support

I wonder when the Yorkshire cricketing public and, in particular, the Yorkshire members, will realise that by their continued and quite frankly pathetic support for Test cricket at Headingley (YEP, June 25) they are only hastening the day when Test matches will be a distant memory in Yorkshire.

Howard Ray, Bramley