Your Letters – Friday April 12, 2019

Why should young families lose out?

Letter of the Week: John Sheen, Dewsbury

Your ‘Letter of the Week’ submitted by Carol Wagstaff (Forum March 29) was trying to put a balanced view for the Kirklees proposal to remove the children’s play equipment from our local parks. 

However, I feel it’s a misguided opinion as the ‘knackered’ (her word) old play equipment, she mentions, should have been replaced over a period of time.

Even several per year, within that year’s budget, would have made more cost-effective sense rather than removing all these important and necessary facilities in one go.

Carol says: “It makes more sense to focus on bigger, more popular playgrounds” probably in Huddersfield, no doubt, but this is a mirror image of our local hospital experience. 

We’ve seen the removal of vital and necessary local healthcare to focus on the larger Pinderfields hospital which necessitates patient and family travelling many miles for a service that should have been preserved at local level.

Why should families with children have to travel to distant parks when they’ve paid their council taxes and, indeed, their councillors, to act responsibly, only to see their local parks without a small representation of joy and fun to entertain their children?

It’s just another excuse by the Kirklees council to spend vast sums of money in Huddersfield. 

How will the £100 million for Huddersfield road schemes and a ‘cultural quarter’ help the children of Dewsbury and surrounding areas to enjoy wonderful family moments together in their local park when a bureaucratic Labour council, some 10 miles away, don’t appear to give a damn?

Dewsbury and Batley are, supposedly, represented by 15 Labour councillors yet, this attack on children’s play equipment, within our parks, has seen little, if any, opposition.

I await the next election with great interest and hope the good people of Dewsbury and surrounding areas do too.


Have another look, Arriva

From: Sandra Pickles, via email

Arriva’s recent decision to withdraw the 253 service has caused a lot of anger and upset, as reported in your article last week headed ‘Bus firm won’t budge on calls for 253 u-turn’. 

Dwayne Wells, from Arriva, seems to be maintaining his view that there were extensive consultations, although I’ve yet to meet anyone who was consulted. 

He says that people said that they would be happy to change in a bus station or hub. 

Sadly Heckmondwike Hub is not satisfactory and can’t cope. Too many buses for too few stands. 

It is not a bus station, doesn’t have adequate lighting, security, toilets or a café when waiting for the once-an-hour bus which is running late.

There is nobody there (customer services) to advise what to do if a bus doesn’t turn up or anybody is in difficulties. 

Before the changes, our councillor, Martyn Bolt, handed in a petition containing 802 names for ‘Save the 253’ at the meeting of the transport committeee in Huddersfield on February 6, 2019.

Other sheets had been handed in at Dewsbury Bus Station office before the meeting, although we don’t know what happened to those.

Almost 1,000 names in a matter of less than a week. 

People miss the 253, so why can’t Arriva reconsider? 

Arriva’s website recently said the following: “Did you know that for some, loneliness can play a major part in a person’s life? 75 per cent of GPs say they are seeing between one and five people a day who suffer with loneliness. 

“Loneliness can affect anyone at any age too. We’ve put together a heap of activities to get you or someone you know get out and about...”

Wonderful sentiments, but how are lonely people to get to these activities when Arriva keeps cutting services? 

People are also suspicious of Arriva’s motives for withdrawing buses. Many are suggesting it is costing passengers more to travel on two buses rather than the one previously, increasing Arriva’s profits.

Is it costing councils more to provide the subsidy for senior passes because of this? 

Come on Arriva, have another look at this.


Can’t believe the hypocrisy

From: Barbara Schiff, Mirfield

I believe Arriva is talking with community groups and charities about combating loneliness.

Considering the bus services it has recently axed, this is a bit rich. My husband and I are pensioners and my husband is registered blind. We used to use the 253 bus service to go from Mirfield to Cleckheaton to a spoken word group and a folk club. 

Now this is no longer possible without changing buses and we wouldn’t want to hang around in Dewsbury at night waiting for an hourly service.  

The partial replacement, the 261, doesn’t run at night. The 253 is the latest casualty, along with the 221 which could get us to Batley, where I used to attend a writing group at the library. 

Not so long ago the 278 which took us to Halifax and the Square Chapel Theatre was also axed and the 262’s route was altered after already being changed from an hourly to a half hourly service.

In distant days past we could also get a bus to Ossett and Wakefield. I can’t believe the hypocrisy of Arriva.


I can’t afford to vote for him

From: Peter Moreland, Heckmondwike

Aafaq Butt, the Labour Party candidate for Heckmondwike in the local elections, left me a leaflet on Saturday.

His promises include free bus travel for the under 25s, more police on the beat, a ban on cash machine charges and stopping bank and post office closures!

Gosh! I thought Kirklees Council dealt with libraries, schools, roads, social services  and refuse collections.

I can’t afford to vote for him, my rates will go sky high!


Best days ever with my pals

From: Jean Archer, Dewsbury

What a nice letter from Tim Wood of Mirfield. It brought back wonderful memories of Thornhill Lees and the pubs that were in the village going back years. Me and my mate Annette used to go in the ‘Percy’ (Perseverance) on a Friday night. 

With Gwen at the piano as the night went on, and after a few port and lemons we’d all end up singing, especially Gwen’s favourite song ‘The Sunshine Of Your Smile’.

Best days ever, they won’t come back.

There’s not many of us left, only Annette and I are still living in Thornhill Lees.


Other parties are needed

From: Harry Teale Mirfield

Not content with betraying the 118,755 voters who democratically decided that living under the dictatorship of the E.U, the local politicians have set out to alienate potential future voters by omitting the incorporation of the skate park in the new leisure centre at Cleckheaton. Why was this allowed?

The Labour Party of today bears no resemblance to the true Labour movement of the 1940s/1950s era which worked to improve the pay and conditions of UK employees!

The other political parties are not much better, and so we have a major dilemma on our hands. 

With 43 candidates declared for North Kirklees, the choice is not very promising and so all we can hope for is a major shift from the current dictatorial situation.

We must set about reforming the political arena in Kirklees by electing sufficient numbers of councillors from other parties to remove the current dictatorship and so start to remedy the atrocities imposed on us over recent years!


Begone, the lot of you...

From: Ian Fitton, Roberttown

I am very angry with the article from Paula Sheriff and Tracy Brabin in last week’s Press. Their attempts to excuse the betrayal of their constituents views were shameful.  

These MPs voted in favour of holding a referendum and abiding by the result. They also voted for triggering Article 50 and therefore leaving the EU on March 29, 2019. 

As for not being able to vote for the catastrophic outcome of a ‘No Deal’ exit to the country’s manufacturing industry, job losses and rising food prices, where do they get this information from?

For every member of the CBI who predicts this there is another who welcomes No Deal.

Why would prices of food rise, they are held artificially high due to price fixing within the EU and tariffs applied by them for imports from outside the EU.

If we were outside the EU we could negotiate our own deals, with everyone setting our own tariffs. Can you see France, Denmark and Ireland  wanting to lose their food exports to the UK? In fact, some experts predict food prices will actually fall.

So please be honest and admit your voting has nothing to do with the best interest of your constituents and the country, but just like your other colleague Yvette Cooper it is merely manoeuvrings to obtain political position for both yourselves and your party.

Shame on you all for putting yourself and your party before your constituents and the good of the country.

At the next General Election, which I imagine will not be far off, hopefully your constituents will remember your shameful behaviour and express it through the ballot box and give you the send off you all deserve. Begone, the whole incompetent, shallow, integrity-lacking gang.


A revealing comment showed disdain

From: Alec Suchi, Bradford

It is significant that the Channel Four presenter Jon Snow made such a revealing comment when he sneeringly stated that he had never seen so many white people, in reference to the crowds who had gathered at Westminster to express their support for the UK to leave the European Union. 

A large proportion of the white working class had voted to leave the EU and Snow was obviously showing his disdain that what he and the Establishment perceive as the uneducated, xenophobic and racist element in society being responsible for inflicting such harm for the future good and prosperity of our country.

Previously the former director general of the BBC Greg Dyke had commented that the BBC as an organisation was ‘hideously white’, and this would have been regarded as acceptable as Dyke would have been lauded for ostensibly promoting a more fairer society, when in reality he was merely virtue signalling.

One can only imagine the self-righteous fury which would have emerged had Snow expressed concern that he had never seen so many black people clustered in one location.

Snow and Dyke represent the hypocritical and hollow values of a self-serving elite, peddling  the values of the so-called Liberal-left which is disdainful of British patriotic and traditional values based on our culture, traditions and national identity.

People of that type have held sway for too long and need to be removed from all positions of influence.


Thanks for attending, and for daft answers!

From: Tim Wood, Mirfield

May I express my thanks and gratitude for all who turned out to our fundraising quiz and supper night last Saturday.

To Tracy and Tania of the Mirfield Rifle Volunteers for organising the raffle and prizes, to Mr B Fretwell for his donation of Easter eggs as prizes, to the hard-working staff, cadets, friends and parents of 868 Squadron ATC, and to those who bought tickets and supported the event.

On the night £500 was raised for new equipment for 868 Squadron Band.

We should have had a page for the daftest answer to a question!

Q: What was God’s first commandment?

A: ‘Let there be light’.

Dumbest answer: ‘Don’t touch those chuffing apples’!

Say no more ... until next time. 


Dismayed over who I’ve got to vote for

From: M Senior, Dewsbury

Looking at the list of candidates to vote for in the forthcoming local elections, I could not be more dismayed as a Conservative voter. 

Being from Earlsheaton originally before moving to the far side of town two and a half miles away, I noticed last time for the council elections Sean Guy was standing to be a councillor in Dewsbury West, and this year is replaced by Farmida Ishaq.

Mr Guy is now standing for election in Dewsbury East.

I have to ask for myself the question, why is the former mayor of Mirfield and a serving town councillor for Mirfield putting himself forward for election?

As I understand things, Mr Guy has a perfectly well-paid job, if elected would he give up his career to become a full-time Kirklees councillor and fight for our long-forgotten causes?

I think not. 

The Dewsbury East seat is quite winnable, with ‘Our Eric’ and ‘Our Paul’ standing by watching our town crumble, whilst Shabir Pandor and other chums spend our cash on other areas.

What we need is someone with a knowledge of the area who’s going to mix it up for Labour and fly the flag for us forgotten Tories. What we need is a proper lionheart, not a paper tiger.

Come the general election I bet the Conservatives wish they had worked harder to keep our votes, or are they just banking on the image of Jeremy Corbyn, Diane Abbott and Yvette Cooper leading the country being too much for us to bear?

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