YEP Letters: January 31

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Check out today’s YEP letters

Why not use dedicated cycle lanes?

David Speight, Tingley

It is very disappointing to see a new road with two dedicated cycle lanes not being used by many cyclists, who for some unknown reason prefer to use the busy road instead of using the cycle lanes which gives them a far safer option than riding on the Wakefield Eastern Relief Road.

I do not have an axe to grind against cyclists, however many ride with little if any thought for their own and others’ safety.

They seem to not wish to ride using cycle lanes which are safe for them, however when there is not cycle lane they often choose to ride on the public footpath putting pedestrians at risk. It is time cycling proficiency courses and test were reintroduced into school. When I was in school we had to have passed our cycling proficiency to use our bikes to go to school.

Battling to reinstate a critical service

Alison Jones, by email

I was really pleased to see the article ‘Parents’ anger over swim row’ in Friday’s YEP.

My son Tom, has Down’s Syndrome and has been having swimming lessons with Jean Ingham since he was two years old. He’s now 14.

Not only has Tom struggled with the physical implications of his disability including poor muscle tone and lack of coordination, but he has cognitive global development delay which means that he has not been able to access standard or group swimming classes. His disability means that he needs close in-the-pool supervision and real patience to teach him not only to swim but about the hazards of being in or around water.

Jean has given him this and so much more. Over the years he has developed strong friendships with other children and has grown in confidence.

Jean has been a massive part of all of our lives and the fact that decisions have been made without proper consultation with parents, carers and the kids themselves is disgraceful and arguably in breach of the council’s legal duties under the Equalities Act.

As is so often the case for parents of disabled children, we are now battling to reinstate a critical service, and we are all grateful for the attention the YEP has paid to our issue.

Nothing new in showbusiness

Michael Stott, Ossett

I read with interest Leeds Arena’s head of marketing, Kevan Williams asking: “Five years ago could you have imagined Celine Dion, Prince and Elton John appearing in Leeds?” in Saturday’s YEP.

Impressive names indeed but with the utmost respect I suspect he has yet to realise in the business he deals in nothing is completely new, it being ever thus, the only difference being the capacity he now has at his disposal.

I can vouch for frantic scenes to secure seats for Bill Haley & His Comets’ 1957 pioneering appearance at Leeds Odeon following a spontaneous appearance from the Queens Hotel balcony causing chaotic scenes bringing the afternoon traffic to gridlock.

Further, an Eddie Cochran/Gene Vincent one nighter three years later at Leeds Empire drew similar irrepresible reaction along Briggate, trust me, and merely two of many worthy examples. However if capacity is perceived to be the ultimate barometer, how about Springsteen, the Rolling Stones and Madonna at her most provocative pulling successive footfall to Roundhay Park in the eighties that would top Premier League matches and dwarf the Arena.

Ultimately all things are relative to the times irrespective of capacity and as proof additional inclusions in surrounding areas must include Mario Lanza, no less, at Bradford St George’s Hall one week after Buddy Holly’s appearance in the city and Louis Armstrong’s historic fortnight in Batley, circa ‘68.

In Lanza’s case such was the demand a hastily arranged additional show ensued days later and all remain memorable 50 and 60 years later surely qualifying too for the “could you have imagined” sobriquet.

As regards diversity of acts Mr Williams was at pains to trumpet the varied sources of entertainment appearing at the Arena, probably unaware of the foot jugglers, comedy on cycles, puppets, stilts and tightrope acts and unfunny funny men all more akin to the circus than the notorious variety bills they festooned though just occasionally if you were very lucky you could come across Morecambe & Wise in a supporting role to the headliner. I repeat nothing is new.

Throwing cash at NHS won’t help

Terry Watson, Adel

Throwing money at the NHS is not going to improve it.

Tony Blair’s pledge in 1997 was “24 hours from saving the NHS.” The then Chancellor Gordon Brown soon after gave the new health secretary Frank Dobson £ billion to be distributed to hospitals around the country. Two months later newspapers reported an increase in premature deaths and cancelled operations around the country and what many described as third world hospital wards.

John Reid took over from Alan Milburn, scrapping the new contract he had drawn up stating that consultants should work exclusively for the NHS for seven years, and should be available for work after normal hours and weekends.

That is why NHS patients rarely see consultants in the evenings or weekends. Billions have been invested every year since but we have the same problems every year. Shortage of beds and nurses, but no shortage of managers. The NHS needs an independent review from top to bottom. Let us find out what all these managers do. Why are we employing so many agency doctors and nurses at three times the normal cost?

Health tourism must be clamped down on and visitors must take out holiday insurance before they can use the NHS.

If someone from the UK takes a job in Germany ,they have to take out private health insurance even though we are still members of the hated EU. We could do the same if we had a Prime Minister who puts Britain first.

Brexit: no deals, just get out

B Leonard, by email

In answer to Alan Slomson’s letter (YEP January 23) and the rest of the remoaners, yes we who voted leave all know to the letter what we voted for, to leave and leave the very next day.

No deals, just get out. Only today I read in the news the former treasury minister Lord O’Neill admits the economy is thriving and the UK is better placed to deal with Brexit than all the rubbish we heard from ‘Project Fear.’ No matter how much we get told the country is on its knees we can find £43million to bung to the French, no problem. So yesm we all know what we voted and would do so again. We are still here, unlike ‘Call me Dave’ who got out on the double, could not see the job through.