Your Letters

Where did it all go wrong?

Letter of the Week: ‘Concerned mum’ (name & address supplied)

Dear Sir,

Reading the horrific details of the Josh Hirst murder case last week, I was filled with dread for the kind of society we are creating.

I am the mother of two teenage children who attend Mirfield Free Grammar and while I am generally pleased with the education they receive, some of the stories I hear from them, on a weekly basis, fill me with horror.

Girls on the contraceptive pill while still under age, conversations about smoking ‘dope’ and getting drunk when still some way off 16, let alone either the legal age for alcohol or the fact that yes, drugs are illegal. As much as anything it is the worldly wise nature of children that frightens me. Where did their innocence go?

I cannot imagine what young Josh Hirst’s family are going through. This killing happened less than a quarter of a mile from my house, and just a few yards from a house I used to live in.

When I was growing up, and it is not so long ago, these types of incidents were completely unheard of.

Yet here we are with feral packs of teenagers being banned wholesale from estates like London park, running criminal drug activities and being packed off to prison just like that.

And yet to read Supt David Lunn’s article you would think we live in a calm, peaceful and safe haven? 

What world is he living in, because it isn’t the one where young people are not safe to walk home at night, where there are entire areas of our towns that are  nogo areas, and where young men can grow up with drugdealing and murder as part and parcel of their lives. because remember, this is far from being the first such killing of a young man in this district. 

I can think of four in the last few years alone. 

I look at myteenage children and hope that I have a done a good job of raising them. Perhaps the parents of children now locked up in jail cells felt the same.

My question remains. Where did it all go wrong?

Book success many thanks

From: Margaret Watson, Hanging Heaton

Dear Sir,

Sponsors and readers of my book ‘Dewsbury in Food and Photos’ might be interested to know that it has won an award for the best fundraising cookery book in the UK.

It will now go forward as the UK’s entry (fundraising category) in Gourmand International Magazine’s World Cookbook Awards, which will be held during the Paris Cookbook Fair later this month.

I have no idea who brought the book to the magazine’s attention but I’m glad they did; there is something about the idea of good oldfashioned Dewsbury recipes being studied by an international panel of judges at an awards evening in the Carrousel du Louvre in Paris that is both touching and amusing. 

The thought would certainly have tickled my mother, who was the inspiration for the book. She would probably have celebrated by buying a new pinny.

Many thanks again to everyone who made this book a reality – the readers who bought it and raised £16,300 for the Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice, the photographers whose pictures brought the book to life, the outlets who sold it without taking commission, the sponsors who funded its publication and the publisher, Dewsburyborn David Exley of Beamreach Printing.

Civil ceremony works for all

From: Aisha Rawat, Batley

Dear Sir,

Why don’t we have Civil Partnerships for all when we want our living together recognised for legal reasons? We can all be equal then.

After which individual couples can choose to have a blessing, a solemnisation, a wedding ceremony, whatever you want to call it, within their faith group and within their values.

People would only belong to a faith group that share their values and vice versa.

The state and religions need to be separated.

No compulsion, no discrimination.

This approach is criminal

From: Donald Goodman, Dewsbury Moor

Dear Sir,

So Supt Dave Lunn says that our crime statistics are readily available?

What about for people who have no access to or desire to use the internet?

In the past local newspapers carried details of a lot of small crimes, so that people could know what was going on in their own patch.

People have a right to know what’s happening on their doorstep and shouldn’t have to go out of their way to find it! 

The papers should be the first port of call, or at least be able to print the same details as these complicated websites. 

What was wrong with the old way of doing it? 

Everyone knows of crimes that police attend that then never appear in the papers.

Jobs boost is power of good

From: Cheryl Kinghorn, Batley

Dear Sir,

I also want to back the plans to redevelop Blakeridge Mills. 

The site has been an eyesore for far too long, so if there’s a chance of bringing new homes and jobs to Batley then surely the whole town should back it. 

We can’t complain that nothing’s been done to regenerate Batley and that noone’s investing money, then say that we don’t want another supermarket. 

Jobs are jobs no matter where they are or in what uniform you do them. 

I think Batley would be massively better off if the Binks plans are permitted.

Cuts should start at home

From: Mr William Lambert, Roberttown

Dear Sir,

Just who are these ‘executives’ in councils and NHS who make cuts, but not on their own salaries and pensions?

There are nearly 30,000 senior council staff on at least £1,000 a week – there are some on £10,000 down south!

Some are little more than glorified clerks. 

It is obvious that serious questions need to be asked about their aptitude and suitability for their prestigious positions, but there are clearly some good performers.

Who interviews them for the job? 

Why do some flip from council to council? 

Do they need to go to university?

If so, what degree qualifies them for these mumbojumbo, politically correct titles, with undeterminable aims? 

Sociology, media studies, or some other soft degree?

A bloated public sector/bureaucracy was one of the reasons for the downfall of the oncemighty USSR.

It is already contributing towards our own demise, and speeding up the collapse of the deplorable European Union.

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