Reader’s letters - Friday October 17, 2014

Artist's impression of Fishergate bridge revamp which is already taking shape (see letter)

Artist's impression of Fishergate bridge revamp which is already taking shape (see letter)

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Have your say

Works will improve centre

I am not usually the type of person to write a letter, perhaps that’s because I usually don’t get so angry when reading ‘your say’, I normally just laugh of other people’s opinions and short sighted views.

But the relentless negative and petty letters I read regarding Fishergate needs to be balanced out. Yes, the council and contractors do seem to have made mistakes and dragged the road works on, for what seems like forever, and yes it has caused problems for pedestrians cyclists and car users alike.

But in order for the high street and city to progress and attract customers, it needs to smarten up its surroundings and make as much of the city centre area shopper friendly and therefore as pedestrian friendly as possible, whilst still providing access to car parks and deliveries possible. Personally, I would like to see further reduction in vehicles through the whole section of Fishergate, parts of Church Street and Lancaster Road.

If you look at thriving cities like Birmingham and Liverpool, they have both taken difficult decisions and totally pedestrianised huge areas, which now attract considerably more footfall than our main shopping areas. If they can do, it why not Preston planners?

It’s time Preston planners speeded up their improvements and bring to fruition some of the proposals for the city centre they have and are producing.

Another Tithebarn type delay cannot be an option, they need to knuckle down and get on with it. And whilst they do, the rest of us proud Prestonians should stop moaning about it and embrace a positive future.

Max Pierce, Broadgate

Cameron fuels rise of UKIP

There is no doubt Nigel Farage has succeeded in shaking up politics ‘in ways that the complacent Westminister Village couldn’t even contemplate’.

But recent Conservative warnings that a vote for UKIP in the upcoming general election will result in a Miliband Government doesn’t hold water when consideration is given to UKIP’s near success in the supposed safe Labour seat of Heywood and Middleton. UKIP will be targeting a number of these on both sides in the upcoming general election.

Cameron could have negated UKIP’s threat much earlier, by granting us an EU ‘in-out’ referendum now before the general election, but he will not. Why?

Because he believes in his own rhetoric that he can negotiate with the EU and obtain all these prized ‘UK let outs’ when greater previous past Prime Ministers than him, have previously failed. Of which I’m sure he is well aware, but all this is promised ‘negotiating’ is to gain him time. He cannot be trusted when having previously promised an EU Referendum in the 2010 manifesto which he subsequently reneged upon.

His promise of an EU Referendum in 2017 will not occur either, even if the Conservatives are returned, because at heart he is a convinced pro- European who has been forced to ‘back track’ by the active Euro sceptics in his own party.

We as a country have signed binding EU treaties under various conniving former Prime Minsters without any consultation or agreement of the GB electorate, which cannot now be set aside without the agreement of the 27 other EU countries, a highly unlikely event. So in order to embrace a number of UK friendly sensible policies, such as immigration controls at our borders, as operated by Australia and Canada, this can only be done by us leaving the EU.

If UKIP do go on to take only a few seats from both Labour and Conservatives in the next election, they may be successful in forming a coalition which could then force an EU ‘in out’ referendum to allow sensible policies to be introduced once again in our own Parliament.

E J Tilley, Chorley

We must stand up for the NHS

We should listen carefully when nurses, midwives and ambulance workers tell us that David Cameron is wreaking havoc in our hospitals. These are botched reforms which even senior Conservatives say were a “mistake”.

The future of our NHS is not safe if it relies on staff working harder, for longer, for less. I listened to NHS staff at Chorley and South Ribble Hospital, nurses telling me about reduced staffing, ambulance drivers talking about chaos at A&E departments.

It’s not true that there isn’t the money to fund our NHS properly. Cameron wasted £3bn carving up the health service, more than £1bn on redundancy payouts for managers, and handed out £1.5bn in NHS contracts to his Tory party donors. Meanwhile, our NHS staff have seen their wages drop 15 per cent in real terms. They have never been paid so little for so much responsibility.

Labour will train up 20,000 more nurses and 8,000 more GPs. Without spending more money (we’ll take it from a mansion tax on properties worth over £2m), we can put the money where it’s needed.

In a poll this week, more than 60 per cent of the public said it’s right that our NHS staff are standing up to Cameron.

If we value our NHS, we have to value those who work in it – and we have to take their professional judgment seriously when they tell us that David Cameron is treating our NHS and its staff with contempt.

Veronica Bennett, Labour’s

prospective parliamentary candidate for South Ribble

Kingdom is no longer united

On the blocking of English votes for English laws I would say

Labour has fulfilled its death wish and will pay a high price at the next general election.

Devolution has served to fragment the UK alienating one little country from another – a Disunited Kingdom in fact – railed against itself.

Joseph Dawson, Chorley

Phone message rings true

Congratulations to Allan Fazackerley on his letter about unsolicited phone calls (letters October 14), I am still smiling about it. Keep up the good work Allan.

John Taylor, Preston