Letters and emails on November 2, 2010

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The Lancashire Evening Post’s letters’ pages online.

Why have Lancashire Police agreed to allow the English Defence League, the right to march in Preston on the same day as Millwall play Preston North End at home?

And with only three weekends before Christmas? Shouldn’t the rights of those who want to cause upset and annoyance to the ordinary person in the street be ignored, in favour of shoppers who will bring much needed income into the city? The EDL protests are well known for their potential violence, and their tendency to attract other protest groups which will oppose their presence. Having a home match on the same day is sure to add to police pressure. I don’t follow football, so I am unsure whether Millwall still have the same type of following they did in the old days. Either way the fact the council and the police have agreed to this march, on a Saturday, will make many people stay away from Preston. Ian Richards via e-mail

But they seem to have a point...

Regarding the forthcoming E.D.L demo in Preston, I would like to make a few observations. As far as I am aware the point this group is trying to highlight is the Islamification of this country as a whole. Their views are based upon more and more mosques being built or extended, sharia law being in operation in some areas of the country and Muslim-only schools springing up. Even the latest multicultural faith centre, being planned in Preston but since withdrawn, would have been Muslim-themed. Now I am not saying there will not be a racist minority in the EDL, just as there are no doubt racist muslims in existence, but the vast majority are peaceful people wanting to get their message across. D Cole, Preston, via email

Bombers left pub ‘unscathed’

Your article on the Luftwaffe bombing raid on Lostock Hall (LEP October 28) stated that the Pleasant Retreat was damaged during the raid. My mother is the daughter of the then Landlord and Landlady of the pub, Albert and Edith Smith. She saw the plane go overhead and claims that it was flying low enough for her to see the pilots face (She’s got sharp eyes my mother). She is adamant, however, that the pub was not damaged in the attack. She should know, she was playing in the pubs backyard at the time and the fact that she is still alive to tell the tale and I’m here to write to you about it, would tend to back up her version of events. Sad to say, the other casualties mentioned in the article were accurate. Chris Poulton, Hill Road, Penwortham

Police need to explain spat bill

As a retired Lancashire copper and currently working in local government in the distribution of council tax benefit I have found myself fielding severe criticism from my customers since the national and local media alerted us to the farcical episode of the juvenile parking spat in the sleepy village of Catterall between two squabbling neighbours, a serving police officer and a retired senior officer (LEP October 28). This has disgracefully, in these times of austerity and cut backs, cost Lancashire rate payers £5,000 from the public purse. Personally I also find this pathetic saga, which apparently distracted an inspector and two further officers equipped with chalk and tape measure, from more pressing operational duties as depressing as an EastEnders omnibus and quite indefensible. Instead of declining to comment on the basis that it was a civil matter settled out of court I feel that the chief constable and his legal team have a duty, not only to apologise, but to offer an explanation for their actions. This is the very least the public they serve deserve. Jim Oldcorn, Ridgeway, Great Harwood

A night of terror in store for animals

With Hindu festival of Diwali and Bonfire Night upon us, the fireworks season seems to go on longer than ever. So please spare a thought for the animals and birds terrified by the deafening crashes. Traumatised dogs are rushed to vets for emergency treatment; sheep can spontaneously abort; horses gallop into fences; and rabbits have been known to die from the shock. We believe that – for the sake of all animals – fireworks should be sold only to organisers of public events and not to individuals wishing to set them off in their gardens or in the street. A ban on sales to the general public would also prevent the terrible cruelties reported every year of vicious individuals deliberately harming animals by tying fireworks to them. Please keep cats and dogs indoors from the afternoon onwards and bring rabbits and guinea pigs inside as well (or at least cover their home with a thick blanket to muffle the noise). Also, be sure to check hedgehogs and other wild animals have not made a home in your bonfire. Ashley Owen, Animal Aid, via e-mail

Pension plan is ‘badly flawed’

Pension plan is badly flawed. I write to comment on the proposal from the Department of Work and Pensions, which is talking about raising the State pension to £140 a week. If the Government intends only to raise the State pension for future generations of pensioners rather than existing pensioners, it will create the worse type of pensions apartheid this country has ever seen. There will be generations of mainly older women with low pensions who will be left at the bottom. Already around 70% of women pensioners don’t qualify for a full State pension and this decision to abandon them to rely on means-tested benefits is absolutely scandalous. Derek Barton, Secretary, North West Pensioners Association, Goldburn Close, Ingol

Pram ban? Thank you, man

Hear, hear to the shop that bans buggies and prams (LEP October 29). Most of their owners are teenage baby factories with the manners and social skills of a brick. They feel they have some God given right to barge on to buses, trains and into shops scowling at those in their way. Reality check: you have the council house, you have the benefits, you have the next one on the way; you DO NOT have the right to preferential treatment. It was your choice to have the baby, DEAL WITH IT! Rob, Earnshaw Bridge, via e-mail