YEP Letters: March 2

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Check out today’s YEP letters

Wilson: Effective and innovative

Don Burslam, Dewsbury

The celebration of the life and career of Harold Wilson is of course very timely.

I have always believed that performances of Prime Ministers should be assessed within the context of the period and by that test, Mr Wilson comes out very well. The Labour Party is notoriously difficult to manage even when the party is in power.

It is a tribute to Mr Wilson that he was able to do this so successfully with the economy being in such a state. But his government was not content just to manage, but to reform. Lasting social reforms were introduced and he will always be remembered for the creation of the Open University. Also notable was his firm stand against being drawn into the Vietnam War. This in sharp contrast to Mr Blair’s enthusiastic participation in the Iraq War. We are suffering from the after effects of this.Lastly, the government of this country has always been something of an ordeal for the occupant of No. 10 but Mr Wilson can now be seen as an effective and innovative Prime Minister. He was treated badly by the media at the time so the time is over due for reassessment.

Cycle highway will only benefit minority

D Angood, by email

reading the letters in the YEP February 23, I found two giving very disparaging opinions of the cycle highway and one asking the question that has bothered me since the saga began.

We all know it was a done deal before we knew about it, but as one of the writers asked, who saw the plans for the route, because I do not remember any being published, not a detailed plan anyhow. It beggars belief that the design/plan was not subject to a more detailed perusal before construction began because if it had been I am sure there would have been major alterations.

Instead it is due to be opened shortly for the benefit of a minority of cyclists and to the detriment of thousands of car, bus and other vehicles and their occupants. Not only has the construction of this white elephant caused major disruption but it will continue to do so throughout its life and length.

The beast has devoured great swathes of the carriageway, sometimes a car’s width, width that allowed traffic to continue to flow around vehicles such as buses at bus stops or delivery vehicles parked temporarily. This will now be an impossibility when faced with oncoming traffic, so what will happen when an emergency vehicle is on such a mission?

The traffic will be unable to move into the cycle highway to give free passage because the cycle lane has raised kerbs along most of its length. Certain stretches of the carriageway were narrow enough beforehand, e.g. Armley Road, Stanningley Town Street and these have been truncated and will therefore only allow single file traffic for some considerable distance. A taxi picking up a fare will cause hold ups in traffic flow that was never a problem prior to this.

I doubt that all those that are concerned and/or aggrieved by this “highway” will have had any inkling of the disruption this monstrosity has caused or is yet to cause. Will it cost another £29 million to dismantle it when it proves to be what the majority feel it will be? Will the politicians decry such an option or will they allow common sense to prevail?

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Time to get a grip on estate

R Kimble, Hawksworth

I was interested to read Councillor Dobson’s letter about rubbish in Morley.

He seemed to be highlighting quite a proactive attitude. If only the same was true in Hawksworth, Leeds 5. Quite why it is so awful here is beyond me. There was a pile of rotting clothes on Hawkswood Grove the other day; it disappeared only to be replaced by five pieces of dog excrement. I have never seen such a casual attitude to letting dogs defecate on pavements as round here.

Hedges are full of empty cans and bottles, as are hedge bottoms. The grassy play area between the Lea Farm Drive roundabout on the left up towards Lea Farm Road is an absolute disgrace - I’d hate to be living in the house next to one pile of clutter that’s there by a fence. There’s a mattress been left on the roundabout itself today. Some weeks ago it was an arm chair. Yesterday a dog on Lea Farm Row was barking constantly ALL day, non-stop, literally. Come on housing office and council, get a grip on

this estate and stop it being some kind of (as one person put it to me) “chav hell.”

Train service is laughable

Nick Keer, Cottingley

In response to the letter from William Houlder (YEP February 29), I think Pontefract Monkhill station, though basic, is very functional.

All it needs is more trains. Over 230,000 passengers a year are using it, and if what I’ve read is to happen it will give the station two trains per hour to Leeds; one via Castleford as now the other an extension of the current Wakefield service. The service eastwards to Goole is a complete joke and needs to be addressed. Timetables from over 30 years ago show a vastly different service!

The service at Pontefract Baghill is also laughable. Two trains per day between York and Sheffield.

How is anyone expected to get to work, the shops eg. Meadowhall, or enjoy an evening out with the current timetable? It’s nigh-on impossible. Come on Northern Rail or Arriva, sort it!

Road closure fiasco

J Howdle, by email

Am I the only person who thinks that the recent closure of Chapel Street /Green Lane, Halton, and the diversion of number 40 and 163 buses due to roadworks has been a complete and utter fiasco?

Drivers have taken it upon themselves possibly to stop if it suits them and not stop at designated stops, especially the 163 drivers on their diversion down Selby Road.

No stopping from Whitkirk Roundabout until Lidl I was told by one of the drivers, went straight by passengers waiting at stops on Selby Road.

Friday, one of the closure days, buses running on Chapel Street /Green Lane as normal service.

Case of right hand doesn’t know what left hand is doing.

Long on rhetoric

D S Boyes, Leeds

Grant Woodward right again on politicians arguing over the EU referendum, they are long on rhetoric, short on facts and figures - do millions of UK jobs really depend on the EU?

Millions more in Europe must depend on their exports to us, eg 15 car manufacturers and six heavy truck makers there supply us with vehicles, would they want to stop selling them here?

UK supermarket shelves are loaded with goods from Europe, eg fruit, veg, salad, dairy products, meat, confectionery etc, can you imagine any of those suppliers not wanting to continue?

Other concerns are about ‘sovereignty’, ‘democracy’ and ‘immigration’ - but in reality, does the ordinary citizen here have any - real - say about what goes on?

Most decisions by government or local authorities are presented as fait accompli, ie NO consultation, vote on, or right of appeal against them, as in Holbeck and over the cycle track!

Also, in today’s ‘global’ economic situation with easy worldwide travel and instant communications, can anyone stop the movement of people to anywhere they really want to go with politically unacceptable draconian measures introduced like summary execution?

As Marlon Brando’s character famously said in the film ‘On the Waterfront’ to his brother, “Charlie, there’s a lot more to this than I realised ....”

An explanation please?

Les Parkes, supporter of Britain Stronger in Europe, Harrogate

Would a member of UKIP please explain how Nigel Farage can ignore the following statement as he did during a brief TV interview on Saturday evening?

“On Saturday, the 27th February finance ministers from the G20 nations voiced concerns about the impact of a leave vote. In a communiqué at the end of their summit in China, they listed “the shock of a potential UK exit from the European Union” as one of several factors posing a threat to the global recovery.”

More justified

G Waite, Leeds

Yes, I must agree with R Kimble (Letters February 29) re. the joy (?) of watching a maternity hospital front door for eight hours prior to the birth of a baby.

But surely the coverage of the referendum is far more justified, as our very democracy depends on a successful ‘out’ campaign.

Katya Jones with her celebrity partner Joe McFadden

YEP Letters: December 9