YEP Letters: March 21

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Check out today’s YEP letters

Concern at homes near church

John Appleyard, Liversedge

I share the concerns of those reported in the YEP (March 18) regarding the building of homes near the Grade 1 listed St John the Baptist Church in Adel.

This is a beautiful Norman church that I first visited with my school many years ago and remember being impressed by its Norman stained windows.

The church has an elaborate carved stone doorway and the bronze sanction ring which I’m told was cut in York in 1200, and that if a couple were too poor to buy a wedding ring they could be married in the church porch, take the sanctuary ring and say ‘with this ring I thee wed’.

We do need housing but let’s hope Leeds City Council and Historic England can come up with a decision that will satisfy all those concerned.

Homes will put ‘desirable’ postcode at risk

Anne Bell, Leeds 18

It was very pleasing to hear Horsforth is the eighth most desirable postcode in England. It is a pleasant place to live, unfortunately, if Leeds City Council has its way this will no longer be true.

They wish to build nearly 1000 houses on land on each side of the ring road at Horsforth roundabout, 777 of these are to be built on green belt land of special interest known as the strawberry fields as well as a primary and secondary school. In the article a resident particularly referred to the green rolling hills around Horsforth. The rest are to be built on the other side of the ring road in the green areas of the old Horsforth college.

The council are not supposed to use green belt land just to make up the housing target which in any case is excessive. This number of houses, cars more than 1000 and people possibly 3000, will cause an increase in congestion, air pollution and an increased risk of flooding as the fields are on the steepest part of the Aire valley, water runs off the hills above Horsforth.

In the past walls have been knocked down by this rush of water, one around Hall Park and one on the A65 into the strawberry fields, West End Lane can become a river, if the fields are covered in housing there is increased risk of flooding in Leeds.

The council is hoping to get money from this development to build a bus lane on the roundabout and into the development and possibly on the A65 then a road to the airport. This road is also on greenbelt land and appears to be part of the route for the old Pudsey-Dishforth by pass, it does not go to the airport, it joins the Harrogate road.

This is not going to ease congestion at the Horsforth roundabout, most of the traffic on the A65 is local, very little goes to the airport as stated in the plans for the airport’s expansion. The increased air pollution with over 1000 cars added to traffic on the A65 will not help the air pollution already caused by the airport. There is no provision for a doctor’s surgery, the local ones are full. Finally, in the 1970s or 80s the engine of a light aircraft stopped as it passed over West End Lane and it crashed in the strawberry fields, it was in the rush hour. Fortunately no one was killed on the ground.

No pat on back for councillors

Dr Michael Lowry, by email

I will echo thoughts expressed by Patricia May, Gildersome (YEP Letters March 18), regarding the disregard of developers for needs of communities affected by new building.

Whilst there are needs for homes to be built, it appears Leeds Council planners are so deeply entrenched in obeisance to developers, that they fail to acknowledge needs of the communities they are supposed to serve.

Building new homes should not mean destroying green spaces. Leeds and other major cities have many examples of neglected buildings and brown field sites that call out to be developed and restored. But no, these are too costly for developers and don’t attract premium prices as do green sites.

The ultimate payers for this avarice are future generations, who not only will be unable to afford those green site homes, but will have significantly less natural environment to enjoy.

Greedy developers and council planners have much to answer for, and it will be our grandchildren who will lament the decisions made today.

Leeds Council planners please take note, have courage and insist on all brown field sites being properly developed before any more green fields are destroyed.

Leeds Labour councillors who are responsible for these approvals, should be held to account for the travesty surrounding unwise planning decisions at the expense of residents’ best interests.

No pat on the back for you, no pats in the fields now either!

Paying their share?

Alex Gillies, Leeds 14

So we’ve a whopping £2billion hole in our finances by another woman Prime Minister who was not for turning?

National Insurance is not negotiable for anyone that earns monies whether PAYE, self employed or otherwise.

Sickness, holiday or maternity leave is negotiated company to company, as with rates of salaries. Self employment is up to the individual to allow for such events in their costing for work they are undertaking.

I was astounded that some self employed pay as much as half the amount of PAYE employees and even with the proposed budget were still not going to pay the same as PAYE employees. One chap who earns £36k was having to pay an extra £10 a week. I pay that on my private pension, contributed wholly with my own money and I’m 73.

Where do they think the money comes from when a family member has to visit a doctor or worse a hospital?

I recall a Sunday lunch in my local, a good friend standing at the bar wearing overalls. I said: “ You been working for the taxman?”

He replied: “If I have to pay the taxman I will be changing my accountant.”

That sums up the self employed to me.

Time for action on dog mess

Steve Kennell, by email

I’m a Morley resident for over 10 years.

Over the past year, the dog muck on the pavements in my local streets is overflowing. I feel like Indiana Jones navigating a path of dirty traps to get home.

The better walkers seem to pick their poop up but then leave the bags on the pavement.

Who do they think is picking up their bags... the dog muck fairy? Three times, yes three times, I’ve had to clean my shoes and entrance floor this week.

This isn’t a bit of poop every now and again, this is simply the walkers making a dirty protest and claiming the streets for their dogs. It’s a disgrace to Morley that children are subjected to faeces in their path.

We need to draw attention to the problem and get some movement on dog walkers in my area taking pride in their local environment and not covering it in the foulest sort of mess.

Clean up the environment

Shaun Kavanagh, by email

there is a distinct likelihood of Leeds City Council (LCC) removing yet another service to its residents unless they pay LCC for the long established “free” uplift of unwanted bulky household items. Many residents will have extreme difficulty in taking such items to the council’s waste disposal sites.

This will ultimately result in the abandonment of those items in public areas, irrespective of what Coun Lucinda Yeadon might think, and it matters not that other councils have not seen a difference as she suggests.

LCC suggest a small charge will perhaps work, but let’s not kid ourselves, it’s just another way of taking money out of the pockets of residents.

This will then be followed by the inevitable rises as it will be the start of things to come as is always the case with our city council.

If people were to resort to flytipping of bulky items, as they surely will, then LCC incur cost to uplift those items, whereas now such items are uplifted by arrangement and do not blight the neighbourhood, so costs will be swings and roundabouts.

To remove the service, unless residents are forced to pay, will certainly not only encourage flytipping, but potential danger especially in the case of fridges / freezers and other possibly harmful items.

LCC should be looking to clean up the environment not make it worse.

YEP Letters: August 18