YEP Letters: October 23

Elland Road Stadium.
Elland Road Stadium.
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Check out today’s YEP letters

Matchday parking permits decision

Ernest Lundy, by email

So Leeds City Council have reversed their decision to hand Beeston residents parking permits to operate on Leeds United home days; wondered why they were taking so long to fulfill their promise.

They say it wouldn’t really work and only move the parking problems to somewhere else! By that one has to assume somewhere else in Holbeck or Beeston?

In a slightly different context the same people continue to allow a legal zone for prostitution in the same district, presumably because they don’t want them to move to another NIMBY area either.

Market car park proposal concerns

Joe Cooney, Halton

I AM writing this letter with concern on hearing proposals of the Kirkgate management to create a new short term car park at the bottom of the open market at the expense of the existing fruit/veg stalls and other traders opposite being move once again.

They intend to relocate traders to the top of the open market under the existing canopy. No traders are in favour of this proposition. They are sick of being moved – which is seven times in 20 years.

Two giant multi-storey car parks adjacent to the market are never full. Market management should be pressing Victoria Gate and John Lewis to lower their car park charges to £2 for two hours instead of destroying people’s livings and livelihoods by trying to move them to another area of the market which will not accommodate the said traders effectively.

The fruit/veg ‘barrow boys’ are the main attraction of the open market and get no consideration about the trying and difficult times being experienced. Moving means losing business and then trying to build it back up again. So leave the outside market alone.

I’m curious to hear if Coun Lewis agrees with my concern because when I previously wrote in about the £13.5m spent on the bottom of the indoor market he replied to my letter in the YEP stating where it had been spent, but made the most ridiculous statement when he said some of the £13.5m had been spent removing 2,600 tons of rubble from the 1975 fire.

Monday morning buses blues

M Kershaw, Hyde Park

Being retired I don’t suffer the Monday morning blues – unless it involves bus travel by First Leeds.

I had a dental appointment in Meanwood and waited for the 51/52 bus in Woodhouse for 40 minutes before ringing the surgery to warn of my lateness due to no bus. A further 10 minutes passed and I rang to cancel the appointment. Six buses had gone the other way so I gave up all hope and instead went to the city centre. On my return home I tried to get an explanation from First as to why so many buses had disappeared, pressed the option for comments and complaints and was put through to Glasgow! “Oh we have been taking the calls from First in the north of England for two or three months now” said the pleasant lady. “I can arrange for a letter of apology to be sent to you if you don’t want to pay a fine for missed appointment but I have no way of finding out a reason as we have to rely on our head office giving us information”. (Me) “Could I have the telephone number of your head office please” - “I’m sorry we don’t have that” - (Me) “Can I have the address of your head office then?” - “We don’t have that either”. Now it is beginning to dawn that if there is no help for the ‘customer service’ staff, then there is no guarantee of buses ever being seen again. I bid goodbye and ring Metro and press for ‘bus information.’ Sixteen minutes later, I have the answer via an inspector. Four consecutive buses missed due to ‘no staff’. This is appalling. The Government, Leeds City Council et al want drivers to leave their vehicles at home and use public transport. Why would they? Waiting for a bus can be a tricky business particularly if one has a tendency to raised blood pressure. This weekend the bus fares in Leeds have risen again. One of the reasons I was most surprised at was due to the fact (following countless complaints and meetings) that more buses are sent out to improve reliability of journey times so this has now to be paid for by the long suffering passengers. If one can afford a smartphone then all fares are now cheaper and those who cannot afford one pay top price. What for? A service which, when I lived in Meanwood 14 years ago was unreliable then. Now it would seem to be even worse. How can First justify cancelling four buses in a row? It is high time managerial staff, preferably with a time deadline tried waiting for one of their “every 10 mins or less” buses and see how they like it!

Time to tackle interest rates

DS Boyes, Leeds 13

I FIND the enormous disparity in rates of interest for borrowing money today very difficult to grasp.

Mortgages for house purchases are almost zero per cent, personal loans from banks around 3 per cent. Credit cards between 20 per cent to 30 per cent, yet in comparison the now widely used payday loan rates seem astronomical. As a naïve OAP I thought one TV advertisement offering loans at 798 per cent APR was excessive, until another came on at 1,295.5 per cent APR! This is usury, with even over a short repayment period the cost to borrowers exorbitant.

I understand other countries in the EU or even the USA have statutory limits on what interest can be applied to such loans, but clearly not here. Lenders may be dealing with some clients having a dubious credit record, so have to allow for a few bad debts, but interest in excess of 1,000% can’t be right. When will government tackle this serious social problem?

A joint approach to Brexit?

Roger Whitaker, Pontefract

It has been reported that Ms Yvette Cooper MP, has said that a cross party group of MPs should negotiate the terms of Brexit with the EU. I am sure many of us would agree with that if it was possible.

However, there is a fundamental difference in their attitude to Brexit to that of the Conservative party.

The Conservative party in general are in favour of leaving the EU and the Labour party were against, although, having failed to convince a majority of the electorate to agree with them, they did agree that the will of the people should be upheld. However there is a feeling that the attitude of the Labour party towards Brexit has changed. With that background, is there any common ground between the two parties that would make a joint approach possible?

YEP Letters: October 24

YEP Letters: October 19