Your Letters

So many groups help make our parade great

Letter of the Week: Tim Wood, Mirfield

Dear Sir,

On Remembrance Sunday, I was standing on the upper slope of Lowlands Road in Mirfield, forming up the human jigsaw of what is renowned as ‘a very large parade’.

Someone came up to me wearing the regalia of the masonic lodge and said: “Where do you want us lot to go?”

I replied: “You see that bridge about a quarter of a mile down the road? You’ll be formed up not far from that.”


“Yes, really, you’re the rear section of number three column.”

Mirfield Parade these days is not just big, it’s massive, made possible by churches, scouts, guides, veterans, serving personnel, mums, dads, onlookers, civic fur coats, top hats, bling and all the pomp of great British tradition, each lending their own unique stature to the parade. Quite a spectacle.

The safety of the parade is managed by the West Yorkshire Police and our own team of local marshalls who do a fantastic job.

The spotting and correcting of potential problems is handled quickly, professionally and quietly.

A lot of hard work and constant planning and overcoming the mountains of red tape and paperwork is part and parcel of most big events these days.

To help me through the mountain I have to thank the police, Kirklees Council Highways and Mayor’s Office, the local bus companies, the Lord Lieutenant’s office, waterways, plus all the organisations that take part.

Without their continued support we would be unable to progress at such speed and build our parade further.

Someone asked me afterwards what’s the best bit of the parade?

Is it the marching to the beat of the drum and the skirl of the pipes, or is it the wreath-laying?

To me it’s neither. It’s the face that we are in a position to remember the fallen and what they gave for our future. All gave some, but some gave all.

Then after reflection, all the bright, cheery faces of our youth organisations who we hope will carry on the traditions and organise events long after we’ve put our parade boots in the cupboard.

Next year will be our dress rehearsal for the 100th anniversary of the armistice in 1918, make a note in your diary.

Thank you Mirfield, you made a lot of proud people prouder.


Thanks for group support

From: Mark Eastwood, Chidswell Action Group spokesman

Dear Sir,

I am writing to The Press, on behalf of the Chidswell Action Group, to say a massive thank you to residents in Dewsbury and Batley, who have supported our campaign to overturn Kirklees Council’s Local Plan to allocate land for hundreds of houses and units for industry on green belt at Shaw Cross and Chidswell.

Despite huge opposition from local people, both Kirklees Council and the Church Commissioner landowners have flagrantly ignored the concerns of the whole community who want precious farmland and ancient woodland in the area protected for future generations.

Kirklees Council need to realise that just because the church desperately wants to sell its land on to developers to maximise its profits, that is not a valid reason to include it in their Local Plan.

However, thanks to the generosity of residents in the area who have kindly donated money to help cover our legal fees, we are nearly in a position to present a full legal argument to the Independent Planning Inspector with the aid of a professional lawyer who will argue the case that the Local Plan once again fails the tests of soundness set by the Government, as it did three years ago.

To date, we have hosted two successful Saturday morning street stalls at the top of Heybeck Lane, Batley, opposite the Babes In The Woods, and a quiz at a packed out Huntsman Inn, Chidswell, which overlooks large swathes of farmland proposed for development.

Whilst we have been overwhelmed by the amazing level of support from people in the area who have helped us to get more than two thirds of the way to our fundraising target, we are still a little way off raising the final amount estimated to pay the full legal fees.

With this in mind, we are hosting two more street stalls before Christmas, again at the top of Heybeck Lane, between 10am and 11.30am on Saturday November 26/December 3.

This is probably the last chance we have to stop Kirklees Council’s Local Plan in its tracks, therefore any support local residents can give could make all the difference in our fight to protect the Green Belt.

Remember, once it’s gone, it’s gone forever.


It’s going to be the place to be

From: ‘A resident of Thornhill Lees’

Dear Sir,

Miller Homes recently unveiled proposals for two considerable housing developments in Thornhill Lees.

The consultation held in the local community centre attracted a good number of residents, it was interesting to note that the main concerns people raised were not about the number of homes planned but the further congestion on local roads that the developments will create.

Kirklees Council have plans to eventually create 4,000 new homes, schools and commercial outlets on farmland to the south of Lees Hall Road and Ravensthorpe Road, which at present is the only vehicular access to what will be a truly massive area of housing. Clearly new transport links will be needed.

The sale of council-owned land within this project is reportedly worth in the region of £25million and would be more than enough to provide the new roads so desperately needed.

Another plus for the local community is the money generated by the Section 106 development funding process, where part of the immediate profits made by developers when farmland gains full planning permission goes to the community for projects such as creating new public green spaces etc.

For the village of Thornhill Lees, which has never really had the amenities other communitues take for granted, this could finally mean that Thornhill Lees really is going to be the place to be.


Not enough jobs for us all

From: Bernard K Powell, Lower Hopton

Dear Sir,

Current British problems – the HS2 railway, roads, Brexit, fracking, schooling, care homes, employment, housing and the NHS.

Anyone with just a modicum of intelligence can see that these are all affected adversely by rapid population growth in most towns and cities.

We have two children and five grandchildren, so from Mr and Mrs Powell gobbling up Planet Earth’s goodies, we now have nine polluters!

Get your calculators out and see the arithmetic for, say, a couple with five kiddies who have four children each!

Driving past schools at going-home time, it reminds me of a football crowd.

It is obvious that there will only be jobs for a fraction of these.

There were 23,000 applications for 600 jobs at Siemens, a German company operating in Humberside, mainly specialising in wind farms.

Some people believe that the choice for many of our youngsters will be the dole queue, prison or the armed services, if they stay in West Yorkshire.


Will leaders take heed?

From: R Spreadbury, Liversedge

Dear Sir,

So there you have it.

Thatcher’s bible was ‘The Constitution of Liberty’ by Frederick Hayek 1960, whose economic philosophy was shared by Reagan and many city slickers and captains of industry.

Basically, minimum controls on commerce so the entrepreneurs can get richer and their wealth trickles down into the wider economy.

But Hayek missed one major point – humans have a greedy gland and this is overdeveloped in the rich and successful.

They are generally self-obsessed egotists, don’t like sharing, don’t like paying tax and they squirrel away their money in tax havens.

This was the birth of neo liberalism, which led to unregulated capitalism, which led to globalisation, which led to industry either moving to countries with cheap labour or driving government policies of the uncontrolled immigration of cheap labour, which led to a gross inequality in wealth distribution which neither left (shame) or right (to be expected) addressed,  which led to the current political sh** storm we now have in the west.

Will our esteemed leaders take heed?

The jury’s out.

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