A simple medicine called love
Letter of the Week: D Hirst, Dewsbury
I am in my 90th year and live with my wife who I met 66 years ago.
We will be shortly entering into 65 years of marriage, which has been, and still is, the very best.
Sadly, six years ago an intruder called Dementia came into our home and stole my wife’s memories.
It left fragments behind, so my wife sometimes remembers my name and we can have a brief conversation before things cloud over again.
We take medication frequently on a daily basis – it’s simply called love and it works.
To all those absent friends, you don’t need a cap and gown to pay us a visit, there is nothing contagious, neither will the price of a telephone call cause bankruptcy.
Should you be lucky and reach our time in life you may realise a visit or a telephone call would have been priceless.
We were there - and we will not let evil win
From: Lisa Cross, Mirfield
Through your newspaper could I please send my condolences to the families of the innocent people who lost their lives in the terror attack at Manchester Arena on Monday.
My thoughts are also with those injured, emergency services, medical staff and the thousands of people who had their night of fun turned into a nightmare.
Myself and my 15-year-old daughter were at the arena on the night of the attack but were fortunate enough to escape with our lives and without injury.
However the events of that night and the sound of the explosion will stay with us forever.
The songs that we sang and the photos taken remind us of the unnecessary evil inflicted on young children and teenagers at the start of their journey in life.
We will not let evil win and will continue to sing and dance in honour of those who were so cruelly taken.
Cleck’s Hargreaves were a talented bunch
From: John Appleyard, Liversedge
I’ve thoroughly enjoyed Kirklees History Month, which has been presented in our local libraries, covering local milestones, stations, mills, towns and villages around Kirklees, pack horse bridges, corn mills, Luddites etc, all of which can be viewed on ‘Kirklees Curiosities’.
Cleckheaton Library is currently promoting the work of Roger Hargreaves, who was born in Cleckheaton in 1935 and is famous for his Mr Men series of books.
The library was asking children to draw their own Mr Men and Little Miss.
Roger Hargreaves is number one on the Spen Valley Civic Society’s fame trail and readers may also be interested to know that his elder brother Robert, also born in Cleckheaton, was a foreign correspondent for ITN news, covering the Charles Manson murder trials and the moon landings during the 1960s.
The News at Ten was introduced on our screens 50 years ago in 1967 and Robert was there from the start.
A talented family were the Hargreaves brothers – and from Cleckheaton too!
Peace will only be found with honesty
From: Alan Burton, via email
There are many issues that will determine how people will cast their vote in the General Election.
May I ask your readers to add to their considerations one of the most intractable problems of recent decades, the Israel/Palestinian conflict?
In recent years the international community, including Britain, has attempted to solve this dispute by admonishing Israel for defending itself while ignoring violent Palestinian transgressions and an associated lobbying movement that acts like a school bully.
That’s a flawed strategy.
Israel is a democracy with religious freedom, an unfettered press, equal rights for all its citizens and a strong trade union movement.
And like any democracy it has a fundamental duty to protect its citizens from harm.
The men and women of violence will only be stopped when democratic nations stand firm against terror.
So I’d ask your readers to consider asking the General Election candidates in our area to sign A Pledge for Israel.
A document that recognises the achievements and the challenges that this small nation faces in the maelstrom of the Middle East.
Because peace will only be found with honesty.
Law is there to protect the most vulnerable
From: David Honeybell, Heckmondwike
Although I have written about this subject on many occasions, this is probably the hardest letter I have had to write. But I must try to answer Danny’s comments in last week’s Ed Lines.
As someone who has had to stand by and watch my mother, two aunties and two uncles (who were my mam’s siblings) and my sister all die from various cancers, I can only say I have the greatest sympathy for anyone who is terminally ill or has a long-term debilitating condition.
I fully understand why some of them and their family and friends think the law on assisted suicide should be changed, so as they say, they can have a dignified death.
But there is no need to change the law. The answer is already there, assisted suicide is illegal, suicide is not.
I think the decision to take one’s own life is the hardest decision any of us could be faced with, but if that is what an ill person who is of sound mind is intent on doing, then they should take action before any assistance from anybody else is needed.
There is no need to involve anyone else if they are sure they want to die before their pain and suffering becomes unbearable.
I’m sorry if this sounds patronising, because until we are in that situation ourselves, we can’t say what we would do.
I have Parkinson’s, and I know I am slowly getting worse, but I do not want the law changing, and making me vulnerable to abuse, and Danny a changed law would be abused.
The law is there to protect the most vulnerable.
Thanks for showing us the candidates
From: Name and address supplied
Many thanks to the Al-Hikmah Centre for organising the hustings on Monday night for the Batley & Spen constituency in the General Election.
The candidates demonstrated there was a lot of choice. Interestingly, Mrs May’s candidate fell short of expectations.
In addition she made the most enormous error of judgement in the history of hustings. It was so bad I will not mention it here, ask around. When viewed alongside her privileged background and upbringing, it demonstrated how she could not be trusted to put the interests of Batley & Spen first if people were not at her elbow in Parliament to correct her.
There were five other candidates demonstrating better judgement. Thanks go to the Al-Hikmah Centre for allowing them to demonstrate their talent.
As a nurse I know how I’ll be voting
From: Mrs Lister, Dewsbury
I was pleased to see nurses giving Jeremy Corbyn a standing ovation at their conference because I am a nurse myself.
I am a state registered nurse, a qualified district nursing sister and a midwife.
I cared about my patients and only Labour Governments did anything to help them.
First, Clement Attlee gave us the National Health Service in 1948, opposed by the Tories. We are still the only country in the world where everyone can see a doctor, a consultant, district nurse or midwife without having to pay.
Labour wanted it to be free from cradle to grave.
Harold Wilson brought in free prescriptions for everyone over 60 years, as well as the Attendance Allowance that was not means tested.
With Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, pensioners were able to have free eye tests, free bus passes and a winter fuel allowance.
The Tories got rid of the matron and the hospital secretary and replaced them with multitudes of nursing officers and pen pushers: ‘Too many chiefs and not enough Indians’ rang around every hospital corridor.
The Tories have kicked the nurses in the teeth by putting a one per cent cap on their wages for 10 years and abolishing bursaries for nurses and midwives.
Barbara Castle, as Wilson’s Minister of Health, set up an enquiry and, at long last, nurses were given proper wages.
Thatcher was the milk snatcher. Theresa May has gone one better by Tory standards; she’s now taking the food out of children’s mouths by abolishing free school dinners.
Hard luck on anyone who has struggled to buy their own house and wanted their children to benefit when they died.
Now, if you need any sort of care, your house will have to be sold after you die to pay for it.
Meanwhile, your winter fuel allowance will be means tested, so the Tories will be poking their noses into your savings.
Me, I’ve always known the Tories were the nasty party, and I shall continue to vote Labour.
Bus planners need to see sense!
From: Mrs Ward, Birstall
What have the people of Birstall done to deserve the withdrawal of the 282 hospital bus service?
Not only this, but also a further 281 service has been withdrawn too.
But, joy upon joy, we now have four bus services serving the Ikea retail park as the new 281 route – two an hour – takes this into the new route.
Also, the 229 service – two an hour from Batley to Leeds – also covers the retail park!
If people need to get to Dewsbury Hospital it is a choice of taxi (expensive), driving there and paying exhorbitant parking fees, or catching two buses, one to Batley and then one to the DDH.
Also, on top of this there will be added traffic problems at the retail park and Birstall traffic lights into Birstall, which is already chaotic.
Perhaps the planners could use a bit of common sense, (which doesn’t seem to exist anymore), and re-think this little jewel!