I MAY not have been the brightest button growing up just after the war, but I can read, write, do maths in my head and managed to be employed all my working life.
I played and loved most sports and I captained my school football team.
I delivered papers, worked in the fields from the age of 11 and still had time for the usual outdoor pastimes that for centuries kids took to be the norm.
Today’s children start nursery one day a week at the age of two and are in there for five full days by the age of four.
When they start school, the homework can take some children over two hours to complete.
When are these children supposed to have some quality time with their parents or to play games with the local children of an evening?
The key criteria for a good education are reading, writing and arithmetic – but politicians keep moving the goalposts.
Any untoward behaviour in school should be dealt with by the headteacher, but it’s at home where children learn manners and discipline.
But how can you have discipline at home when children are in the care of someone else for most of their young lives, in bed just after seven o’clock, then up early because lots of parents have to be at work by eight o’clock?
Alex Gillies, Killingbeck
Spend the cash on the railways
I read with interest Councillor Andrew Carter’s letter (YEP, June 12) regarding his government’s £10m investment in new stations at Apperley Bridge and Kirkstall Forge.
During the morning rush hour, trains from Skipton and Bradford are going to arrive at the two new stations just as they now arrive into Leeds – full and with people standing.
How are all these extra people who are using the new stations going to get on the trains, let alone get a seat?
During the evening rush hour, the situation is reversed with people currently rushing down the platforms trying to get on trains that are full.
It’s no good making the platforms at the two new stations longer because longer trains will not fit on the platforms further up the line.
That’s assuming there are extra coaches to make them longer.
On the same day as Andrew Carter’s letter, Alan Chaplin, the service delivery director for Northern Rail, stated that trains are already restricted by current platform lengths.
And let’s not forget that the Northern franchise has not had a new train in the last 25 years, only a few cast-offs from other train operators.
So come on, let’s stop sticking our finger in the dam and get some real money spent on across the board improvements to the rail infrastructure.
Network Rail has just made £100m profit. Why not use some of that?
Steve Fodden, Garforth
Gullible over seaweed claims
Being a member of Ukip, V Platt (YEP, June 11) is clearly as gullible as the rest of them when it comes to believing idle gossip.
The ‘fact’ that the European Union prohibits the use of seaweed as a fertiliser is a myth – one no doubt created and perpetrated by the same elements who seek to further their own agendas by spreading other such blatant lies and untruths.
Passing such tales on as fact without verification is doing nothing for the credibility of Ukip, or rather the lack thereof.
There is no EU directive prohibiting the use of seaweed as a fertiliser, and many Jersey potato farmers still use seaweed in the traditional manner.
As for why V Platt found his or her Jersey Royals lacking their usual taste, I cannot say.
But this is one thing that cannot be blamed on the foreigners.
Adam Dickinson, Leeds
V Platt’s whimsical story about the EU ruining the taste of Jersey Royal potatoes is exactly that – a story, a lie.
Let’s be generous and say an urban myth, not least because, as a Crown Dependency, Jersey is not an EU country.
No such directive exists – and I certainly won’t be changing my voting intentions based on lies and urban myths propagated by Ukip.
Dave Pentelow, Otley
Labour made a mess of BGT!
So, Malcolm Nicholson is expanding his writing repertoire, in a bid to be the YEP’s TV critic no doubt (YEP, June 12).
He didn’t seem to enjoy an edition of some ‘talent’ show or other. He says, ‘but the big question is, has BGT run out of steam?’
Surely in Malcolm’s case the big question is, why did Gordon Brown allow BGT to get in such a state?
We mustn’t allow the Labour Party anywhere near BGT again after the mess they made of it!
Kevin Wilson, Cottingley
Help firefighters to retire at 60
I SEE that the firemen are going on strike again.
This pathetic Government insist that the firemen have one of the best paid pension schemes in the public sector.
Public sector pension schemes have been hit by recession and government cutbacks, so they will have to work longer in order to get less out of the system.
I side with the firemen. If their pension is not sufficiently adequate to retire at 60 then something should be done.
Would you really want to climb up ladders, lug heavy equipment around and so on at the age of 60 or beyond?
Why do MPs receive gold-plated pension schemes when a firefighter will put his life on the line every day for far less perks?
MPs are nothing more than public sector workers. But you can’t get that into their thick heads.
I watch them on TV and they are so arrogant and do nothing but interrupt people who are trying to ask them a question.
Terry Watkinson, Castleford
Cycle register’s a good idea
Recent figures have revealed that Bradford is the capital of uninsured drivers, with crash for cash accidents high on the list, along with cases of drivers without tax or a even a driving licence.
It is therefore obvious that far too many irresponsible and inconsiderate people still take to the road illegally.
But as such drivers create danger, havoc and considerable expense for other road users, isn’t it time the police came down on them heavily to either make them act more responsibly or confiscate their vehicles?
Otherwise they will just continue to flagrantly disregard the law to the detriment, anger and annoyance of all other road users.
In a similar vein, the TV Cops programme showed a cyclist being questioned by a patrol car driver.
When the biker asked why he had been stopped, the policeman replied: ‘For riding an unregistered cycle’.Now there’s a thing! Would it not be good idea to implement registration here?
Apart from other advantages it would also help in the recovery of lost or stolen cycles.
With the cost of a good cycle these days being high, surely it would be worth it.
Ernest Lundy, Beeston
THERE IS much talk about building cycle paths around Leeds – at great expense.
Perhaps then, cycles should be road taxed for anyone over the age of 18. After all, motorbikes are.
D Daniel, Killingbeck