YEP Letters: January 3

solar panels. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos.
solar panels. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos.
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Check out today’s YEP letters

Renewables can help end fuel poverty

Jaimes Lewis Moran, member of Leeds Green Party

It’s a shame that after all these years central Government is still hell-bent on denying renewable energy the subsidies and funding it deserves to flourish.

What makes this so upsetting is that by retrofitting houses with these legitimate technologies it can indeed bring people out of fuel poverty, and thus more could be spent on our everyday essentials. Yet apart from this, it is a growing sector of industry that holds undeniable evidence of financial growth and social value. In fact a while back there used to be some council (solar panel) retrofitting programmes in action, maybe someday these could return with the right support in place? Leeds Climate Commission and Poverty Truth Commission take note. It isn’t easy to tackle living poverty or climate change, but solutions like renewables could help.

Plans for city’s bus networks: your views

Better-trained bus drivers and contactless payments and improvements to some of the region’s worst congestion hotspots are among the developments expected on Yorkshire’s roads in 2018. First Bus - which has 3500 staff across Yorkshire and carries 550 thousand people a day on its 1400 vehicles - is promising a host of changes. Contactless payments are being introduced starting in West Yorkshire in the middle of January. The firm is also re-training all its staff in the region to help its employees better understand customer behaviour and manage their own. Forty four new vehicles with wireless internet and USB charging points and next-stop announcement will arrive in the city by the end of March. A further 60 new vehicles all with a distinctive green livery will be in place by the end of 2018. We asked YEP readers for their views and here’s what some of them said on social media..

Callum Mounteney

I detest the “new buses”, they’re hidious StreetDecks. I love the design of the 04-12 buses called the Geminis. If all them are gone then I will be travelling by car instead.

New buses will solve nothing,, just waste money and drive prices up. It does nothing to reduce congestion and ‘not in service’. I hate this idea, it’s just wasteful, distasteful and shouldn’t happen!

Mark York

Maybe Paul Matthews, First’s Managing Director for West Yorkshire, should take a very close look at the Number 12 service.

Not long ago FirstBus had a song and dance about this service going to the White Rose Centre. Every day the Number 12 is cancelled, almost hourly, GPS tracking is a joke made to make it look like they are not cancelled.

So 104 new buses will be as much use as a chocolate fireguard if the Number 12 is anything to go by. I do not blame the drivers, it is not their choice to cancel one service to make sure another one is running (on an Arriva route), but the drivers deal with the public who have waited one hour for a service advertised as every 10 minutes.

Morena Klausgaard

Contactless payments, next stop announcements and more training for drivers. Great!

Now all they have to do is get their buses to show up on time (or just show up, period).

Phil Meade

Buses get stuck in the same traffic, unless bus lanes are built they will be late. How about have a go at the thousands of cars on the roads because if they weren’t there buses would be on time. Think about things logically.

Do you really think us bus drivers enjoy being late? I don’t think so. Try being a bus driver and see for yourself how hard the job actually is.

Cheryl Day Dockerty

Doesn’t happen in London and yet there’s a lot of traffic and cars, loads of buses and on time. If a busy city can get it right, why can’t we? Our transport system is rubbish. Not often I catch buses but when I do they are either late or don’t turn up at all. They are dirty and uncomfortable but yet they keep putting fares up.

Elizabeth Pickard

How about getting them to turn up when they are due?

Sandra Richmond

When the Arena opened in Leeds I thought that I’d be able to get home by bus as concerts generally finish by 10.20pm. No chance, as Arriva kindly made my last bus much earlier, so it has to be a taxi home now!

Ian Heszelgrave

Yorkshire transport is a joke. Cycle lanes that cyclists don’t use, trains that are 28 years old . Buses that have been cut to only run peak time, one big joke.

Judy Sismey

Hope the low emission buses are for city use, especially south Leeds!

Reece Richard Ramsey

Never mind contactless pay, could they get their drivers to be more pleasant and smile?

Brexit and a new referendum

Mike Harwood, Leeds 5

You may be for or against Brexit – assuming you know what Brexit promises, which as yet no one does – but at least you should be intelligent and honest enough to recognise that to call for and to hold a further referendum on the issue would not, I repeat not, be undemocratic.

To say that our lawful Parliament cannot change existing laws and decisions, is itself both undemocratic and idiotic.

It would mean, ladies and gentlemen, that if you displeased the Queen you could be tossed into the Aire on a ducking stool; on a more serious note that we would still be throwing our untreated sewage into the Aire, getting our, untreated, drinking water from the same source and be dead of the cholera. And it might, intelligently, be recognised that the previous referendum vote was like voting for pudding without any idea (but indeed with a few misleading and unfounded propaganda ideas thrown at us) as to what sort of pudding was on offer. Now that we are just beginning to get some sort of idea of what Brexit could leave us with and without, might well be the time for sensible people, with the welfare of our country and people at heart, to argue sensibly for a new and more definitive referendum.

Time to consider volunteering

Jo Hunt, Volunteering and Community Engagement Advisor, Barnardo’s

The start of a new year, when people are thinking about making resolutions, is the perfect time to consider volunteering.

The leading UK children’s charity Barnardo’s has 20,000 volunteers across UK from all walks of life, ages and abilities, and we are keen to recruit more people willing to donate their time in 2018 to support vulnerable children and young people.

Volunteers get involved for many reasons – to support our work and cause, to do something unusual and inspiring or to learn new skills. It is fun and rewarding, an opportunity to meet new people and it can be a stepping stone to a new career.

Our volunteers help us in many ways, whether directly with children and young people, volunteering in our shops and offices or helping to raise vital funds. We also have special opportunities for employee volunteering (where companies allow their staff to volunteer for a day), young volunteers, interns and university students.

All Barnardo’s volunteers are given full training and support.

If you’re interested in volunteering with Barnardo’s, please pop into your local Barnardo’s store, or contact me by email at jo.hunt@barnardos.org.uk or go to www.barnardos.org.uk/volunteering.

Finally I would like to thank all of our existing volunteers who have supported us throughout 2017 – their contribution is invaluable, we simply couldn’t exist without their support.

The reality of Brexit

Alan Slomson, by email

People in the UK expect our Government to make the best deal it can with the other countries in the EU.

And – surprise, surprise – the peoples of these countries also expect their democratically elected leaders to make a good deal from their point of view. That is why the negotiations are difficult and are most likely to end up leaving us worse off than we are now. This outlook explains why the value of the pound fell as soon as the referendum result was known.

As a result, prices are now rising faster than wages, unemployment is going up, and the prospects for 2018 don’t look good, as John Cole (Letters, December 29) has already pointed out.

These consequences of a Leave vote were predicted in advance. Your correspondents (Ian Oglesby, December 29 and Tim Bradshaw, December 31 and others) who express concern seem to have been misled by Leave propaganda which sneered at the experts who have now been shown to be correct.

Whether Farage, Gove, Johnson and others were deliberately misleading people, or are themselves living in a fantasy world, I leave it to others to judge.

The Brexit fantasy seems to include the strange idea that we can insult our European colleagues and, at the same time, expect their good will in the negotiations.

Let us know what you think

THE Yorkshire Evening Post wants you to share your views with other readers. To join the debate, email yep.newsdesk@ypn.co.uk Please keep letters under 300 words.

YEP Letters: January 4

19 December 2017......    Editor of the YEP, Hannah Thaxter presents over �19,000 raised through the YEP Half and Half appeal to hospice representatives  Kate Bratt-Farrar from Wheatfields  and Tracey Dick from St Gemma's together with the hospices staff members. Picture Tony Johnson.

YEP Letters: December 23