YEP Letters: November 18

Check out today's YEP letters

Greenway is a waste of money

Martin J Phillips, Leeds 16

I note that West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s Transport Committee are set to approve £2 million of taxpayers’ money to extend the Castleford Greenway.

Could someone please explain to me how this path can be described as a “green” way? The existing path is anything but ‘green’ - it is a strip of tarmac that blights the countryside. It seems to me to be a complete waste of money since it is no different to using existing quiet backroads. Surely to be classified as a “greenway” the path should be surface with natural materials? It is worth noting that the most used stretches of the Leeds/Liverpool canal towpath by cyclists, walkers, and runners are those with a natural material surface. Walkers, cyclists and runners may as well use roads and pavements rather than have money wasted on a strip of tarmac.

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Some years ago I gave up my time to volunteer in helping to lay access paths on Otley Chevin using natural materials. They are still there 20+ years later and well used by walkers, runners, cyclists and people in wheelchairs so tarmac is not necessary.

Continue fight to protect green belt land

David Bowe, Guiseley

Over the last few years as a resident in Guiseley (Pudsey parliamentary constituency), I have received on a fairly regular basis leaflets or brochures from our Conservative MP Stuart Andrew.

One consistent theme in this correspondence has been Stuart’s repeated assertions that he is opposed to the use of green belt land for housing. Claiming that “this is a battle that he is committed to continue to fight”.

On November 22 the Conservative Chancellor, Philip Hammond, will announce in his autumn budget that he is to release green belt land for new housing.

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Whilst I think we would all welcome action by the Government to tackle the housing crisis, this is not the right way to do it.

Building on green belt land is the easy way out and does not build what our communities need – affordable houses. Research shows that three quarters of the housing proposed on green belt will be unaffordable for most people living in our local area. Why lose country side land when there is potential for one million new homes on brown field sites?

I therefore call upon Stuart Andrew MP to continue his fight to protect green belt land in Aireborough.

He must stand up in the House of Commons and tell the Chancellor and Prime Minister that he will not vote for the budget proposals until the provisions to release green belt land are removed.

Horsforth residents fed up

M Boyes, by email

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It’s good to tell there is an local election around the corner, with the announcement of the reduction of the number of houses to be built on green belt land.

One glaring omission though is the ‘Strawberry Fields’ land at Horsforth.

This council is set on destroying Horsforth and then they will throw more money at the inadequate roundabout at the junction of A65\Broadway Ring Road. No wonder Horsforth residents are so fed up!

Patients need peace of mind

Shaun Kavanagh, by email

The hospital fat cats sitting in their ivory towers seem to ignore the fact patients need peace of mind, not the added misery and stress of family and friends paying extortionate amounts for parking when visiting. The same applies for outpatient visits for hospital treatment.

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Being in hospital can be extremely stressful whether as an “in” or “outpatient” and inexcusably high parking charges simply add to stress levels. Hospitals should encourage patient visitors as they provide, in many cases, support and comfort to ensure a speedy recovery. The hospital hierarchy should look to minimise stress and discomfort not add to it, to put it mildly.

Robert Halfon, Tory MP accuses NHS bosses of “taxing the sick” and how right he is. They should be showing a high level of compassion not trying to rake in millions from people’s grief. The fact Yorkshire charge more than any other area outside of London for hospital parking is nothing short of scandalous.

That said, one has to appreciate the Leeds General Infirmary (LGI) is somewhat unique being that it is located in the centre of Leeds and free parking would undoubtedly be abused by city centre workers, but there can be no excuse for charging at outlying hospitals.

The LGI should receive serious consideration with a view to the introduction of some form of policing in order to punish those who are not justified to park in the hospital grounds. Difficult as that it might be there is always a solution when properly thought through.

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Many will wish Mr Halfon every success in his quest to abolishment hospital parking charges, having already presented his bill to Parliament which will have been the first hurdle of many. Good luck Mr Halfon!

Pensioners are taking the blame

Malcolm Shedlow, Moortown

On behalf of all pensioners still living, I would like to apologise for apparently being a drain on society, so it is rumoured, for living as long as we have.

It’s obviously not the millions of pounds the government borrows regularly in order to give it away to other countries.

It’s nothing to do with the tax evaders. It’s nothing to do with the amount of benefits being paid out even to the people who have never paid in to any scheme.

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It’s we, the pensioners, who have worked all our lives and paid all dues and demands in order to retire with a living retirement pension.

That pension by the way is the lowest of most other countries and yearly becomes lower as inflation rises.

So there you have it, we the pensioners are to blame even for workers being laid off or having reduced hours.

I feel so guilty for keeping myself reasonably fit in order for me to reach the age of 84 with the full intention of living a lot longer.

Fortunate to have grandparents

Ernest Lundy, by email

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What will they come up with next? Being looked after by grandparents can be bad for children some think tank or another has decided.

What a load of old tosh! In days when both parents were obliged to work to afford a few extras, they were indeed fortunate to have them.

Furthermore, if they were so inadequate at caring for children, how one wonders did their own children survive?

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