YEP Letters: August 4

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Check out today’s YEP letters

May should reject austerity

John Appleyard, Liversedge

So Mr Austerity, better known as former Prime Minister David Cameron, has given out knighthoods and honours to his mates and £283,000 golden goodbyes to each of his 20 special advisers.

A petition to honour the man who put his life on the line in assisting Jo Cox on the day she was brutally murdered was rejected on the grounds that we mere mortals can’t make nominations. Meanwhile workers in Britain have seen their wages fall 10.4 per cent between 2007 and 2015. Cameron and his former sidekick George Osborne said ‘we are all in it together’ when clearly we aren’t. Public libraries are closing or having their hours reduced and Leeds City Council, like other local authorities, is facing up to 2000 job losses.

If Prime Minister Theresa May is offering anything different she would reject Cameron’s cronyism and the austerity that has been the Tory Party’s economic policy for the past six years.

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North faces housing crisis akin to London’s

Cities in the north face being saddled with a housing crisis akin to that of London a think tank has warned as home ownership levels across Yorkshire plummet. We asked our readers for their views on the subject. Here are some of them.

Luke Pattinson, via Facebook

Nothing new it’s same all over the UK.

The way I see it is that houses are no longer homes, just investments. Too many made huge profits, home ownership is now only available too a select few within certain areas as landlords from down south or elsewhere continue to buy and rent them out. There is also the lack of social housing or similar, and people who refuse to let houses be built on greenbelt.

Jon Kett, via Facebook

Houses are no longer an asset - simply a government saving scheme to pay for your healthcare in old age.

Rent a house, spend the money on beer and enjoy your free healthcare - paid for by the houses of the responsible. Are we really saying this is down to the price of houses? House prices haven’t increased above wages over the past 10 years in Yorkshire - this is a change in attitude we are seeing. There are government schemes providing an additional 20 per cent equity - all you need to put down is five per cent.

Mick Lucani, via Facebook

Maybe people are starting to see through the big lie..that home ownership is the only way..it’s high time more social housing was built with affordable rents.

Dominic Hill, via Facebook

Many people’s wages in real terms have decreased 20 per cent in recent years. It’s no surprise with house prices increasing as they have it’s nearly impossible for them to buy a property.

Brendon Bremner Sullivan, via Facebook

People’s wages haven’t increased really in the last 10-20 years so mortgages are expensive but I as a homeowner of a modest home would still rather pay a mortgage than pay someone else’s !

Darren Johnstone, via Facebook

I think this is because people want a £200k house and let landlords buy the £70-£150K houses, people won’t start on a reasonable priced house and improve it, they want a new home in new area.

I saved and bought my home for £80k and the whole area is sold to renters many of whom do not improve or care for the houses.

Marcus Houlden, via Facebook

Could it be anything to do with the constant stream of articles in the YEP from estate agents saying how wonderful the buy to let market is?

Nothing to do with immigration: most immigrants don’t have a credit history so they can’t get mortgages.

It certainly isn’t down to refugees. who don’t have any money either.

Devolved government in Leeds

Robert Craig, Weston-super-Mare

EXPERTS at the London School of Economics, and also Manchester University, say that the gaps between the English north and London have widened.

The study found the two pulling further apart on traditional measures such as goods and services and employment. It also recorded gaps growing in education and health.

The findings come after the Government said that £1m is being invested in the Northern Powerhouse project each day.

Since 2010, London has been pulling away from English England on many economic indicators. London has seen improvements across the board.

London’s increasing wealth, however, is not reflected in general improvements. The study concluded that economic growth cannot be relied upon to improve social outcomes.

The TaxPayers’ Alliance, in the meantime, has called on the Government to scrap the High- Speed 2 rail project (HS2) as a “wasteful vanity project” which should be axed as it is likely to be delayed and over budget.

It is also designed to suck English talent into London and away from English England. HS3 across the North would bring greater benefit to the English North than HS2.

It would show commitment to the English if the construction of the HS2 project were to begin in Newcastle rather than London.

The conditions of English England will not improve until the English have their own parliament and devolved government in Leeds. One only has to look across the border to see how devolution and its own government has benefited Scotland.

Thanks for saving house

Chris Dobson, Meanwood

I would just like to say what a great job has been done renovating a property on Street Lane.

22 Street lane has opened as a nursery. I pass on a daily basis and for months wished i could win the lottery to save the building as it was left unattended, sad and becoming overgrown. Obviously a lovely property but needing cash injection.

The renovation now complete the building is a joy to see and sits proud on the corner near Roundhay Park looking full of life - well done to the owners and thank you for saving a fantastic house.

No boundaries

Ian Stevenson, Royston

I marked Yorkshire Day by asking everyone to think on that our towns are well known both at home and abroad.

Tiny Haworth and old York, Redcar and Pontefract races, Middlesbrough chemicals, towns with sports venues and long-standing manufacturing industries from Skipton to Sheffield are all nationally important.

Furthermore, there is only one town in Britain called Huddersfield, one Harrogate, Wakefield, Doncaster, and so forth. When I hear “Halifax” I do not think of Nova Scotia. Our “Carltons” can by identified by their nearest town. In local news reports, there is no value in prologues that introduce Leeds Grand as “a West Yorkshire theatre”, Thirsk as “a North Yorkshire racing venue”, Bridlington as “an East Yorkshire resort” or Experience Barnsley as “a South Yorkshire museum”. These divisive terms are seldom used in national news items and are utterly useless to a home audience. Some of them are obsolete.

After less than 12 years, the disbanded South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire County Councils were replaced in 1986 with local unitary authorities that we have today.

It is now 30 years since my home area was freed from those experimental funding zone authorities – time for some kind of anniversary to mark that liberation, one might think.

A few organisations are still locked inside their 1980s funding boundaries and they perpetuate a bureaucratic barrier to local authority co-operation, to north-south public transport and to environmental projects.

The Berlin Wall could be physically demolished. How can we demolish the ghost of an experimental administrative division? I urge you all to break this habit of using the vacuous terms “South Yorkshire” and “West Yorkshire” in your conversation and your mailing addresses – unneeded, if you give a post-code.

We can build for tomorrow on the deep heritage of York’s Shire, founded as a kingdom 1,139 years ago.

YEP Letters: December 16