YEP Letters: December 22

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Cycleway is ‘preposterous’ project

Vernon Wood, Garforth

Your reader Chris Tyne’s (YEP Letters December 12) description of the Seacroft/Bradford cycleway as a council ego trip is one way to describe this preposterous project.

Another description of City Hall may be to liken it to a place where white elephants and flying pigs compete for domination of Cloud Cuckoo Land.

Rarely has an authority been so comprehensively conned to the extent that Leeds councillors and officers have been in this £30 million pie in the sky venture, where any measure of cost/benefit ratio went out of the window in the shadow of “Le Grand Depart” legacy aspirations (which we now discover lost over £1 million).

Did the planners try to evaluate future use of cycleways? Did they even count the number of bikers currently using the two main road approaches (east and west) into Leeds and the eastern approach into Bradford?

I did. In the spring of 2014 I surveyed cycle traffic in the rush hour periods of 8 to 9am and 5 to 6pm on east and west approaches on York Road and Wellington Bridge over a five day working week.

These 20 hours of rush hour cycle traffic produced a total of 654 cycle movements. It is sobering to reflect that each of those bike rides was subsidised to the tune of almost £50,000 - yes EACH.

The YEP published the results but to no avail as some time later the scheme got an enthusiastic approval and here we are, with growing criticism from all road users such as Mr Smart (YEP Dec 17) who details the imposition of dual bike tracks on narrow road sections such as Stanningley Road, creating danger and distraction onto all other road users whose room for manoeuvre has been severely restricted.

Junctions will become a nightmare to negotiate. Many residents and traders will be unable to park close to their premises.

When will the city fathers learn to listen to the people they should be representing?

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All taxpayers contribute to roads

Tony Winstanley, Castleford

Once again an irate motorist writes to the letters column berating cyclists (YEP December 19) and like others before suggests that cyclists should pay road tax as other road users do.

I am not a cyclist but am increasingly puzzled as to what this “road tax” is that is paid by “other road users”. The facts are that road tax does not exist. It was abolished in 1937. The payment made by some vehicle owners is vehicle excise duty. Many cars are exempt from this duty and many others pay a lesser amount. It is a duty that is paid dependant on the emissions produced.

Road building, and repairs, are paid for out of general taxation so a car driver pays no more than a cyclist or even a pedestrian. ANY person paying ANY type of tax contributes to our roads.

The term “road tax” is a conveniently shorter term to describe the payment made by SOME car owners.

What about tolerance?

Martin Hamilton, Leeds 28

Anthony Craven berates cyclists for slowing the traffic down and suggests that they pay road tax.

Quite apart from the fact that a bit of good old British tolerance and fair play would not go amiss here, such a proposal would be illogical. Road tax us now levied according to emissions. My car is low (but obviously not zero) emissions and I pay no road tax.

Bicycles are zero emission. It would be perverse to levy a tax on them but not on my vehicle!

Will postman ring third time?

Ann Squires, by email

Are you stressed out with all the Christmas preparations? I might be able to make you smile.

I had a card through the letter box from the Royal Mail saying that they had been unable to make a delivery and that we should phone to arrange a redelivery. I was very puzzled as we had been in all day, but made the phone call to arrange for the redelivery.

I was even more puzzled to receive a further card marked ‘2nd card’ again stating that they couldn’t make the delivery. Once again and slightly more annoyed this time I phoned the Garforth office and explained that we had been at home and even sat underneath the doorbell at the time given for the attempted delivery.

I explained all this to man in the office only to be told in a most polite manner that the delivery man is only obliged to knock on the door, but not obliged to ring the bell. I have to admit to being stunned into silence, had I just heard correctly, I had, because once again this very polite voice was assuring me that this was the rule.

I told the gentleman that this was the best laugh ever and asked if they had that written down somewhere, he didn’t know but was prepared to go and look until I assured that I didn’t have any time to wait and he himself must be very busy, so still scratching my head and laughing at the same time we ended the call. Can’t wait for Monday and the third attempted delivery. I still think that it would have been quicker to ring the bell than write out the card not to mention the toing and froing of the said parcel. Still rules are rules!

Katya Jones with her celebrity partner Joe McFadden

YEP Letters: December 9