YEP Letters: January 5

Kay Mellor
Kay Mellor
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Check out today’s YEP letters

Plenty to entertain on local radio

John Appleyard, Liversedge

The BBC yet again was the most watched television channel over the Christmas period with Mrs Brown’s Boys receiving the most viewers, which shows that ‘Auntie,’ despite its critics, is still popular with viewers.

There were also some gems on local radio, including one about Scott ‘Pretty Boy’ Midgley, a bare knuckle boxer from the Buttershaw estate in Bradford who is ranked world number two at the sport.

Apparently bare knuckle fighting is on the increase and its supporters claim it is now safer than boxing with gloves. I also enjoyed an hour long interview with John Kear talking about his life in rugby league from his time at Bramley, Paris, Sheffield, Huddersfiled, Wakefield, Hull, Batley and now at Bradford. If any one can take the Bulls back to the top flight then there’s no one better than John Kear.

Finally, the acclaimed writer Kay Mellor did a couple of interviews on Radio Leeds.

Kay is so busy and has such a prolific output of work, advancing the causes of women that often get neglected.

History turning full circle with development

Michael Meadowcroft, via email

I saw the piece in the YEP on Boxing Day about the proposed residential development at Sweet Street, Holbeck. Very interesting.

History turns full circle. In 1936 the great Leeds housing pioneer, Rev Charles Jenkinson, lost his city council seat in the Holbeck South ward to a Liberal candidate, Albert Edward Wilkinson. Wilkinson was a 63-year-old manufacturer of chip shop ranges with a business in Balm Road, Holbeck. He had been the city’s Lord Mayor in 1934.

It was quite a surprising victory as Jenkinson was a remarkable man, responsible for the clearance of the slums of Holbeck and Hunslet and the building of a number of new housing estates, including at Gipton and Halton Moor.

He was also responsible to the construction of Quarry Street flats a huge development east of the city centre containing 938 flats of different sizes. He had also introduced a differential rent scheme with adjoining tenants paying different rents. The scheme was very unpopular and was opposed by Wilkinson.

Another significant part of Wilkinson’s campaign was to bring new housing back to Sweet Street, Holbeck. Having won on this promise the City Council began the construction of 366 flats, called St Barnabas Garth, just before the war.

One block was partially erected and the foundations for the remaining two blocks were constructed but the work was suspended when the war started. After the war it was decided to complete the block of 84 flats but no further work was ever carried out on the other two proposed blocks. The one block was completed by 1949.

The flats were never popular and the whole plan was deemed a failure and were partly demolished in the 1970s and the tenants rehoused elsewhere. After this the remaining premises were utilised by the city council’s public works department.

I believe that the ugly block still visible from Victoria Road is that block. All the terraced houses in the Sweet Street area – most of them railway houses – were demolished in the 1970s, as was the Holbeck Liberal Club, also in Sweet Street. So, some eighty years later, housing is returning to Sweet Street!

Making wrong comparison

John R Wainwright, by email

John Cole (Letters, December 29) likens our departure from the EU to a football team electing to be relegated from the Premier League, but the comparison he makes is the wrong one.

When we leave the EU we’ll not be leaving the Premier League (or any other league) because currently we are not a team but just one member of a 28 strong multinational squad, run and managed (like most Premier League teams) by a group of foreigners. Also like most PL teams, the EU has a penchant for the use of cheap foreign players in favour of home-grown talent, pays it’s employees astronomic wages out of all proportion to their talents, and makes it’s customers pay through the nose.

The UK on the other hand will, after leaving, run it’s own team and will go straight into the global premier league, and as a nation with the world’s fifth largest economy, membership of the G7, and one of only 5 permanent seats at the UN will be one of it’s higher ranked teams.

The EU on the other hand will probably suffer quite a drop in form after losing one of it’s two best players, and the only current prospective replacements being from Albania, Croatia or Iceland.

The only issue related to Brexit which needs to stop is Mr Cole’s incessant whining.

No more NHS waiting lists

Paul Muller, by email

My new year resolution for the NHS is that it stops making waiting list.

The main reason why the NHS can no longer treat all the sick coming to it in a timely fashion is the terrible habit of making waiting lists. The English out of good will don’t mind waiting in an orderly queue.

Waiting lists have a habit of increasing in length and there is nothing that can stop this. We have been told by NHS England that there will soon be 5,000,000 people on the surgical waiting list.

This means some unfortunate patients will never get their operation; this is already happening.

There is a long waiting list for every appointment you request of the NHS. For every blood test every scan every MRI scan there is a long waiting list for the test.

Then when the test has been done to confirm the diagnosis or not there is another waiting list for the GP or consultant to get the result and then yet another waiting list made for you to see the GP or consultant to get the diagnosis.

After all this you are put on another waiting list to get your treatment. Y

ou have now been on seven waiting lists. This is called procrastination. I will do it tomorrow, but tomorrow never comes.

So we will soon have 5,000,000 on the waiting list. This procrastination has delayed treatment by up to three or four months. So we are at the bottom of the league for cancer treatment in the whole of Europe.

There are fewer and fewer nurses and doctors willing to work in our disorganised and failing NHS and so the few doctors and nurses that are left are having to work until they drop.

Waiting in accident and emergency for up to four hours is deemed to be okay, it is a blot and a disgrace on the NHS.

Today Jeremy Hunt the health minister is urging us to care for our mentally ill 24/7 and not in a year’s time.

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