YEP Letters: June 5

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Check out today’s YEP letters

Triathlon will hit city bus services

PD Burrill, Leeds 8

I am writing concerning the massive cancellations of bus services due to the Leeds Triathlon on June 9 and 10.

While I am sympathetic to the motives of the council, many thousands of people will have no bus service on June 10 from 5am to probably late afternoon. All buses serving my area (12, 13, 13A, 38, 36, x98/99, 91) are not running at all, many others will not be running either.

I cannot even get to my church service (again) we will all have to pay for taxis (£10 minimum from my home to the city, for example). I have written to Mr Riordan, council chief executive, requesting the council pay me the sum of £20 to cover my taxi fares – I am not holding my breath!

Leeds needs tunnel vision on public transport

James Bovington, Leeds 18

I ECHO your editorial’s recent call for Leeds to be forward-looking, independent and visionary in tackling the inadequate state of public transport in our city but for once what is required is tunnel vision.

In both senses. City centre rail tunnels in our own version of London’s CrossRail would vastly improve the network and give direct passenger access to major traffic objectives such as Quarry Hill and the Southbank as well as freeing valuable space at Leeds Station.

In the sense that having tunnel vision means being single minded and in this case refusing to countenance inferior solutions then tunnel vision to build the rail tunnels is what is required so that the ‘Motorway City of the Seventies’ can become the ‘Metro City of the Twenties’.

Leeds has the stated aim of becoming the ‘best UK city to live in by 2030’. To do so it needs radically to improve local public transport.

Rather than spending vast sums on shortening journey times to destinations further away like London or Manchester investment should focus on improving the daily lives of all who live in the city and making Leeds itself the key destination for all living in the city region.

At present our city’s traffic problems are more than just an inconvenience in fact the ongoing traffic nightmar eappreciably worsens the quality of life and in many cases public health.

Yet a Metro style system isn’t even on the radar for the unimaginative local transport planners.

I want to see an underground railway at least in inner Leeds with an expanded and fully electrified local rail network possibly supported by trams in my lifetime and I’ll be 60 in 2020.

If the local councillors and their timid planners can’t deliver what other cities (Liverpool, Newcastle, Glasgow) take for granted make way for someone who can.

I’ll be retiring in a few years.

Funerals are voluntary

T Crawford, by email

Yet again the outrageous cost of funerals is hitting the headlines.

The average cost is now around £4,000. In addition, those peddling funeral ‘plans’ are driving this figure even higher with expensive add-ons when approaching vulnerable and worried people.

Yet there is nothing at all to worry about. As I have pointed out before in these columns, holding a funeral is purely voluntary. The law does not require you to have one. All that’s needed is a death certificate and appropriate disposal arrangements with the local authority.

Surely, people have better things on which to spend their money rather than a funeral. It is, quite definitely, the last thing to worry about. So keep your money in your pocket dear people or spend it on the living.

Speed limits are not outdated

Phillip Marsden, by email

In response to Peter Horton regarding speed limits (YEP Letters, June 1), I agree with him that cars are much more advanced with brakes that apply themselves in certain circumstances, anti-locking brakes, anti-skid measures, the list goes on and on.

Despite all this the crashes still continue. Why? The one thing that has not advanced is the driver, arguably the most important safety device in the car.

The roads are full of drivers who cannot, will not, control their urges to go far faster than is safe. For example, those who drive at 40-50 mph in 30 limits until their satnav tells them that there is a speed camera ahead. Because of these people causing crashes, killing people, we are now inflicted with speed bumps, chicanes, and 20mph speed limits.

Speed is not the only problem (there are many others, most driver-related), but it is a major factor. Until such time as the general driving attitude advances as much as the cars then speed limits are not outdated.

In my view, the car designers should be working on a system which analyses a driver’s driving pattern and, after deciding that the driver is arrogant, irresponsible, and a danger to others, takes control of the car to move the car to the side of the road and then shuts down the engine until the police have re-activated the car. After a suitable fine, of course.

Give us some decent roads

Terry Watson, Adel

Ken Clarke was responsible for introducing speed humps to Britain and admitted it was an awful mistake.

Leeds City Council have ignored his mistake and have given priority to these monstrosities, giving the motor trade full-time work repairing damaged cars.

No thought is given to the fact that our roads are so badly potholed that we do not need any traffic calming measures.No thought is given to the emergency vehicles whose response times are increased by ten seconds for every speed hump they have to drive over. I have just paid £300 for three broken springs which were only discovered in the MOT check.

I have been driving with a faulty vehicle unaware of the condition. The mechanic confirmed that the damages he is constantly repairing are due to potholes and speed humps, and had three more vehicles to repair after mine. How many more vehicles are being driven with faulty steering suspension and wheel damage, with owners unaware of the problems?

It is time the council stopped wasting money on decorating our roads with pointless white lines, rumble strips and excessive signage, and give us what pay so dearly for: decent roads.

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