YEP Letters: June 7

Muhammad Ali.
Muhammad Ali.
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Check out today’s YEP letters.

Goodbye to The Greatest

Jack and Sue Banner, Meanwood

It would appear that 2016 will be remembered as the year during which we lost so very many remarkable people !

Superlatives are used quite inappropriately in my humble opinionhowever, in the case of Muhammad Ali I feel that the title ‘’ The Greatest ‘’ isthoroughly deserved .

Not just a wonderfully gifted boxer , but wonderful human being.

He was a very handsome and articulate human being .

His efforts on behalf of the poor and underprivileged , regardless of race or creed should not be underestimated .

His death will be grieved by many millions around the world . R.I.P

Calling former classmates of these schools

Scott Bradley, by email

WERE you a pupil or teachers at Newall, Whartons, Weston Lane and Prince Henry’s Grammar School, Otley up to the Millenium (2000)?

If you have not yet heard or seen our links on other Facebook sites, we want to let you know we have created two new Facebook groups, for you to join.

After a Prince Henry’s Grammar School reunion last year, four friends - Scott Bradley, Tracey Murrell, Diane Garrett and Graham Smith - who attended these schools in the mid 1970s created a Facebook page called Newall, Wharton’s & Weston Lane to 2000, which would bring former pupils and teachers back in touch with their friends and colleagues in some cases, of over 30 years ago.

The group numbers are steadily growing, but we realised early on, there were not as many photos taken in the early years and hope that this letter encourages people to look through their photo albums and speak to friends, ex teachers and other family members . You could join the group to post pictures or email us your photos (otleyschools2000@gmail.com) or text us (07722 358 910).

If you are not on the internet we will arrange somebody to call, collect,scan to the site and return the photographs to you.

Just a week ago we launched a follow on site which is called Prince Henrys Grammar School to 2000. This site is attracting more members andmore photos in a smaller period of time, but we are still looking for more photos and memories from ex pupils, teachers and family members. We look forward to welcoming you to the group, but if you are not on facebook, please email us your photos to otleyschools2000@gmail.com or contact us on 07722 358 910

Stand firm and vote for you

James Kirk, by email

No matter what the outcome of the EU Referendum when you wake up on the morning of June the 24 your life will not have altered in the slightest.

You will not be cast into a pit of fire, hordes of migrants will not be fighting to get though our doors like shoppers on Black Friday. The economy will not implode, nor will fire and brimstone fall from the sky as I suspect the outlandish scaremonger David Cameron will claim as he tries yet again to whip up a frenzy of fear in his bid to keep the UK as part of the United States of Europe.

We will all be £4,000 worse off, 400,000 jobs will go, and our IQ’s will drop lower than the average room temperature if we leave. Where do they pluck these figures from?

There is not a politician out there who can tell you the price of a pint of milk in this country, yet they can accurately forecast the loss each and every one of us will endure for years to come.

The people have a say in the future of our Nation, and that is cause for concern amongst politicians who like to run our lives rather than improve them. Cast your vote as you see fit, but in-or-out we are still lumbered with the same self-serving politicians. The leaders of the exit campaign won’t rise to power to ensure all that they claim can be achieved, will be. Cameron will most likely have to fall on his sword if we vote to leave, but the same Tory government will still be in power. The Conservatives will not tear themselves apart in civil war, the lure of position and power too rewarding to risk internal strife. God forbid the alternative! a Labour Government under the leadership of Willie Nelson’s love child Jeremy Corbyn.

Enjoy this moment of people power and ignore all the doom and gloom that goes with it. Now is your chance to shape the future. Whatever you decide don’t be swayed by statistics and fear put out by both sides.During the War, after every German air raid my grandmother would roll up her sleeves get down on her knees and vigorously scrub her front doorstep until it shone like a new penny. It was her home, and the sons and daughters of whom she had many were fighting to free Europe from tyranny. She wanted them to return safely and when they did she wanted them to see she had shown her own spirit of defiance toward those who sought to control us.

“She must have been very house proud?” I asked my mother.

“Oh the house was gone. Blown to smithereens,” My mother replied. “But that bloody doorstep was spotless.”

People in glass houses. . .

T Maunder, Kirkstall

I WATCHED most of the interviews with John Major and “BoJo” this weekend on The Andrew Marr Show.

I always find the behaviour of politicians, both current and former, amusing, hypocritical and unintentionally ironic at election times and the same is true of this referendum. For Major to describe the Brexit campaign as “squalid” given what we know about his private life (and there’s an image that’s unbearable) must be the “Ironic Quote Of The Week” surely ? Impeccable.

Dogs, love and mum-in-laws

Ernest Lundy, by email

This is an approving tale on dogs and mothers’-in- law! Dogs in this instance meaning the last one I owned in particular. A misnomer really as I always believed he owned me as much as I did him. Either way, he was the most lovable and faithful animal I (we) ever owned, as those of my friends and acquaintances will confirm. As for my mother-in law, Annie Harrison, unlike others in the same position, who are often maligned and made fun of in jokes, meant or not, she and I got on very well indeed. She was as they say ‘salt of the earth’. A hard working women for most of her life who worked until well on the way to 80; who loved bowls and bingo in equal measure. In addition to which she was a cook extraordinaire, as I discovered when courting her daughter, and since on Friday evenings and Sundays for many a year.

For a long time I never questioned the appearance of game being on the menu, until upon asking how this should be, sometime later Annie produced a signed copy of a fine of 10/- paid by her husband, Clifford, to Otley magistrates for being caught poaching by a game keeper on the Harewood estate.

It seems he was attending to a call of nature, and while in the act, suddenly felt a pitchfork prodding his rear end; and the event passed into history.

Back with our dog Sandy! He was a constant companion in everything we did, when bowling or eating out, which in later life was usually at the Polish club in Harrogate Road, where after leaving’ Annie always made sure he had remains of the meal in a doggy-bag.

Now some folk say dogs have no hearts or souls. But for my money they do; or if not they have senses beyond our ken.

This was proved when Annie had to go into a nursing home at Roundhay after a fall. When we visited for the first time, we passed the window of a large lounge, at which point Sandy placed his front paws on the window sill and wagged his tail, his gaze focused on my mother-in-law sitting across the room.

Furthermore, after Annie passed on, we were up in the cemetery at Woodhouse Hill tending to the grave of other family members, when Sandy disappeared! After searching all over we found him lying across Annie’s’ grave, on the patch of grass below her headstone. It is hard to think about those two wonderful creatures (one human the other, a so-called animal) in my life without filling up with love and nostalgia. Now that my dear wife has gone, she too makes me realise how lucky I have been in my life. Yes, I could fill a book of memories on the same subjects. But please don’t ever believe that all mothers-in-law’ are a nuisance, or that dogs in particular are animals to be avoided. If such a view is questioned, blame the owners, not the animals which, when God was deciding to give us the blessing of mother’s- in- law and dogs, he really knew what he was doing.

Leeds HSBC UK City Ride event.
10th September 2017.
Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe

YEP Letters: September 25