Sending a message on polling day
Letter of the Week: Kathryn Stalton, Chidswell Action Group member
I’d like to thank Chickenley Rage Member Adam Hutchinson for bravely writing in and exposing the hypocrisy of Dewsbury East Labour councillor Cathy Scott, in last week’s Press Letter Of The Week.
As a member of the Chidswell Action Group we had a similar experience with Coun Scott right at the beginning of our campaign to save Green Belt at Chidswell, where she said one thing and then when it came to the crunch voted in favour of destroying what little green space we have left on two separate occasions.
She even stood shoulder to shoulder in a Labour election leaflet with my neighbour and member of our protest group, a neighbour who spent weeks collecting petition signatures for Coun Scott and her Labour colleagues showing their supposed ‘opposition’ to the failed Local Development Framework and plans to build at Chidswell.
Contrast that with the hard work and effort put in by Conservative council candidate Mark Eastwood, who is also a valued member of the Chidswell Action Group.
Mark Eastwood has worked tirelessly for the group, helping to organise public meetings, protest demonstrations where hundreds of local residents marched on Chidswell, as well as trips to London to submit petitions to the Archbishop of Canterbury and Prime Minister.
He was also instrumental in the organisation of the visit to Chidswell of Government Minister Eric Pickles two weeks before the LDF was rejected by the Planning Inspector.
If he is our next councillor, I know that Mark will continue to fight on our behalf to stop the plans to destroy farmland and Green Belt at Chidswell.
Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for Coun Scott and I hope that the electorate in Dewsbury East get the message and send her one of their own on polling day.
Act now to save the NHS
From: Christine Hyde, Dewsbury
Are you confused by the conflicting reports about the health service? Will the government’s drive for fewer hospitals and greater privatisation of health service delivery really be so good for us?
How many private companies are involved in delivering health services anyway? Did you know that the English health service is now very different to that in Scotland and Wales?
Do you believe Andy Burnham’s headline in The Independent that the NHS could be ‘carved open’ by healthcare profiteers? (It is true by the way.)
Do you believe his remedy? Have you heard the rumour that the NHS is ‘unsustainable’? If you hear it again remember this ... a child buying a bar of chocolate is paying more UK tax than the company named after a huge river in South America!
If any of these issues concern you and you would like to learn more and find out how you can help protect the NHS, the new branch of Keep Our NHS Public starting in Dewsbury, may be for you.
Pop along and help shape what to do and how to do it: Tuesday May 6 7.30pm, The Women’s Centre, 7 Wellington Street, Dewsbury WF13 1LY.
Our parents and grandparents fought for the NHS and it has been denigrated enough! The NHS should be there for you and you are worth it.
Drivers helped dog owner
From: A grateful dog owner
On Tuesday April 22, while walking my dog in Batley Parish churchyard, my dog jumped over the wall which brings you out onto Stocks Lane, where the Church Steps pub was.
I would like to thank the motorists, who were really great. They stopped until I reached my dog, and even though there was a long tailback of traffic, nobody was pipping their horn or getting impatient.
Thanks to everyone for your kindness. You saved my dog’s life.
Thanks for kiddies’ gifts
From: Sarah Seymour, hospital playleader, Dewsury and District Hospital
On behalf of the children and staff on the children’s ward, I would like to thank you all for your kind donation of Easter eggs and children’s books that you have donated to the ward over Easter.
We have also shared some of the eggs with our children’s A&E department.
As you can imagine, no child enjoys being in hospital, and this can be especially worse over the Easter period. Due to your kindness, all the children will be receiving an Easter egg.
This would not be possible if thoughtful individuals didn’t donate generously to the ward.
Thank you once again, donations are always greatly appreciated, as they make the child’s stay in hospital a happier experience.
We really appreciate the support you give to the children’s ward, and hope you all enjoyed a very happy Easter.
Charity crew were unsafe
From: Brian Johnson, Dewsbury
I am sure all your readers are aware of the terrible conflict and suffering in Syria, with an estimated 160,000 lives lost and hundreds of thousands made homeless.
I welcome the fact that there has been a concentrated fundraising effort in Dewsbury town centre over recent weeks. I support these volunteers wholeheartedly.
Last Saturday, whilst in my car, moving slowly around the market area, I was approached by a collector with a Syria aid collection bucket. I could not give as my seatbelt was secured and my car was moving up to changing traffic lights.
As I slowed down the collector approached my driving window, and the car behind almost ran into the back of me.
I was probably lucky not to be involved in an accident, but I was equally unlucky not to give any monies, nor was the collector able to explain the cause and how the money is being administered.
I am sure these are well-meaning people, but putting themselves and others at risk, in my opinion, is not the best way forward.
I wish them luck in their campaign, but please do the collecting in a safe and responsible manner.
I am sure I am not the first person to be concerned about this. Good luck.
Labour seem not bothered
From: Mr SJ Newlove, Dewsbury
With the local elections now only three weeks away, I get the impression that the Labour Party is conducting their campaign with the same mixture of apathy and indifference that they apply to running the affairs of the council.
Indeed, they seem to think that their names have only to appear on the ballot paper to be re-elected.
In the area where I live, Dewsbury East, there has been no campaigning by the Labour candidate, Cathy Scott, no election literature or posters.
In contrast, the Conservative candidate, Mark Eastwood, seems to be running an enthusiastic, high-profile campaign and has, I think, personally knocked on nearly every door in the area, whilst delivering election literature.
All of this gives the impression that, perhaps, the Labour group are so devoid of ideas that they would be glad to hand over the running of the Kirklees Council to the Conservatives, who, perhaps, will bring a fresh approach, ideas, enthusiasm and leadership, which, I feel, is required in Kirklees at this time.
Fined for town centre visit
From: Derek Hornsby, via email
I have never had a reason to write to a newspaper before, but recent events prompted me to do so.
I read The Press weekly and lately the hot topic has been the dismal condition of businesses in Dewsbury.
Personally, I have avoided shopping in Dewsbury as it has gone from the bustling vibrant market town of my youth to a place offering no reason to visit.
I’m a pensioner now and recently was forced to be in Dewsbury, sadly due to a bereavement.
This involved visiting Yorkshire Bank and Matalan afterwards to buy clothing related to this, so I parked in the car park at Matalan.
Now bear in mind for some years I would park with a blue badge – not mine, my wife’s, not thinking at all about parking limitations.
Well, today I received a parking charge notice, £60 for overstaying the two-hour free time. My reaction? I will pay as I don’t want the hassle.
Will I be a Dewsbury shopper/ visitor in future? Matalan, pay attention!
Be aware of hedgehogs – Hedgehog Awareness Week May 4-10
From: Ruth Yates, Gomersal
Are you aware of the wildlife in your garden? Are you aware that there may be hedgehogs snuffling about when you are tucked up in bed? Lots of people do see hedgehogs around, but sadly many are only seen after they have been killed on the road by a car or lorry.
Hedgehog numbers are dropping because of other factors such as loss of habitat and increased use of chemicals in gardens. Their numbers are declining by approximately five per cent per year.
During ‘Hedgehog Awareness Week’ the British Hedgehog Preservation Society (www.britishhedgehogs.or.uk, telephone 01584 890801) encourages carers to visit garden centres, schools, libraries and so on to tell people who they can help these delightful creatures to survive.
At one time we used to put out bread and milk for the hogs in our gardens.
Please do not do this. Hedgehogs are lactose intolerant. Encourage hogs into your garden by putting out peanuts, meat-based cat or dog food either from tins or packets, pet biscuits and water.
You are much more likely to have hedgehogs in your garden if you leave it a bit untidy with some fallen leaves and twigs which can be used for nest building. In hot dry period, put out a shallow, heavy dish of water for hedgehogs to drink from.
If you find a hedgehog out during the day, it will almost certainly be ill.
Put it in a large box on a towel, if possible with a warm hot water bottle and seek help from a vet, RSPCA or telephone BHPS for a local carer who can help.
Please look after hedgehogs and try to stop the decline in the numbers of these wonderful little creatures.