Your Letters – Friday January 11, 2019

Can you help with breweries’ history?

Letter of the Week: Bob Tomlinson, Lindley

I found the article on pub life by David Bentley in Friday’s edition of The Press very interesting and very relevant to the increasing problem of pub closures in the country.

It was also good to note that the Batley and Birstall Civic Society has focused on local pubs and highlighted the loss to the community of these social amenities.

In the past pubs were used as social meeting places as well as places to have a drink. In fact many clubs, welfare organisations and businesses started life in Victorian pubs.

The life of the pub is a fascinating one, and I am reminded of the historical research of local Batley pub historian Rod Kaye, who has written about Batley and Dewsbury pubs. 

As a member of the Brewery History Society, I am particularly interested in the former Spen Valley Brewery Co. Ltd, which was based on Whitcliffe Road, Cleckheaton, and later acquired by Thomas Ramsden & Son in 1951. At the time of its closure it was a bottler and owner of various licensed premises. 

I would be interested to hear from any of The Press’ readers with knowledge of the brewery, or Springwell Brewery in Heckmondwike. 

Also, if anyone has any items or pictures of these breweries and pubs, I can be contacted at, or on 01484 355378.

New rules could help

From: James Roberts, Scholes

I see Councillor Sheard has popped his head up to say that the council is powerless to prevent fly-tipping.

I find the statement although true somewhat amazing! 

He then goes on to say that they have fined offenders a measly £150 last year. It’s time to start getting tough with these morons who blight our countryside – put them out on our highways and byways litter picking with orange overalls on. 

Having said that, what role have Kirklees played to cause some of it? 

They have allowed the tips to become virtually no-go areas for certain types of waste.

For example, rubble and plasterboard are now banned from being taken to your local Kirklees tips. 

You have to register your car or you are not allowed in and woe betide you if your trailer is longer than that allowed, you are told to take the waste home! 

What a fiasco. I live on the edge of the Kirklees area and my nearest tip is a mile away, which is not in the Kirklees district. I have to travel seven miles to my nearest tip. 

Is that helping the environment? When West Yorkshire were in charge of the tips you could take your waste to anyone of them. 

Can I suggest that all the West Yorkshire councils adopt the same policy and forget about not being a ratepayer in the area?

It may reduce the amount of fly-tipping which has certainly increased since the current restrictions were introduced!

Pool parking is a concern

From: Catherine Brooke, via email

As a regular KAL user at Batley Baths I am concerned about the lack of parking.

There are time limits of one hour on the nearby street parking which doesn’t allow you to get changed, complete a swimming or fitness session, get showered and dressed.

Luckily I have no mobility problems, but a lot of pensioners go to the sessions held there and one of the customers was very upset today at receiving a parking ticket after attending a 45-minute aqua class.

As we all start the New Year and are embarking on healthy resolutions to get fit, this was an upsetting and costly experience for a KAL member from Kirklees.

Other sports centres have on-site parking, Batley Baths doesn’t.

A sensible resolution would be to increase the parking to one and a half hours so users of the facilities can continue to use the facilities without the worry of receiving a fine for trying to stay healthy.

Charity begins at home

From: Martin McFadden, Drighlington

Two years of twaddle and bull, wriggling and scheming to twist the will of the people. 

Breathtakingly beyond belief is the 20 billion pounds given by us, year on year, to other countries.

Mrs May should announce this is cancelled, and also tell the EU we are ‘OUT’  and we are not paying the 40 billion into their unaccountable coffers. 

Then divide that 60 billion between the NHS and the police and also declare that the new equivalent of VAT will be reduced to 15 per cent.

Most people would admire her, sharing optimism and enthusiasm for our new future, pulling together, to put the ‘Great’ back in to Britain, rather than being the demoralised crew of a rudderless ship heading for the rocks.

Finally, another morale-booster for these rejuvenated shipmates would be that HS2 is cancelled, saving countless billions, a fraction of which is going to be spent on improving the services and facilities of our existing rail network.

There, job done.

Good times are over for most

From: Mr A Roberts, Dewsbury

When I drive past the school gates and see the multitudes of cheerful children, full of hope, I almost feel sorry for them. 

With the relentless march of automation, computers of robotic influences, just where will all the jobs be for them?

Most avenues are completely saturated in Britain; 80 per cent of new businesses go bust within two years. 

We have twice as many shops as are needed!

Only 48 per cent of university graduates are in a job that mirrors their degree. I know two law graduates – one is a van driver; the other stacking shelves!

They’d have to go to London to have much of a chance. Ugh!!

There were over 30 applicants for a mediocre job I once applied for, and that was 15 years ago.

Many people ‘opt out’ and are content to live on benefits all their lives.

The more people in the country, then the more there are wanting their share of the national cake.

The good times are over for most, unless you are one of the over-paid fat cats or filthy rich.

It’s looking like a world full of zero-hours contracts, unpaid internships, poverty wages and multi-millionaires like Cliff Richard, Claudia Winkleman and JK Rowling helping to recruit unpaid volunteers for NHS hospitals, to add to all the other volunteers in charity shops and public organisations.

Police are victims like us

From: Steve Cass, Mirfield

I’m a bit more sympathetic to the police than Danny Lockwood is (‘Race gangs still run the district’s streets’, Ed Lines 4.1.19).

The state of society is a function of the decisions made in Parliament.

The police like the rest of us are left to manage as best they can in a mess created by our politicians, Lib, Lab, and Con.

Your house is a reflection of the decisions you make about running it, and it’s the same with the country. 

And since for most of us looking after a house is as much responsibility as we want, we delegate looking after the country to elected representatives on the basis of the promises they make at election time and the commitment they make to acting in our best interests.

The question is, and it applies to them across the board, why do our elected representatives think that reshaping society into its present form was a good idea and in what way do they think it was in our best interests? 

Even more curious is their reluctance to explain the thinking behind their creation, because for all their love of talking they never want to talk about this. 

Are they not proud of their ‘achievement’? Try asking Paula Sherriff and Tracy Brabin about it and I wager they’ll start talking about the NHS.

Looking at the self-servers, hypocrites, and incompetents that grace the benches in Parliament, it’s hard not to conclude that they are totally out of their depth – consider for a moment our pipsqueak Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson and compare him with for instance his equivalents in Russia and China. 

Does anyone really believe that this shower of ours would be able to manage in a real crisis?

The problem is that our politicians are feelings-led rather than facts-led. 

They are wishful thinkers who believe that it’s enough to be optimistic for everything to turn out well. 

The wisdom of hoping for the best but planning for the worst completely escapes them.

The police are inhibited by political correctness because the lawmakers, that is the politicians in Parliament, have decreed it. 

Political correctness was designed by cynical and bungling politicians to minimise criticism of the adverse consequences of their bungling. 

And the police are just as much victims of it as the rest of us are.

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