Reader’s letters - Thursday April 09, 2015

The Rawat family was fined and ordered to remove and replace their u-PVC windows (see letter)

The Rawat family was fined and ordered to remove and replace their u-PVC windows (see letter)

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Tangled in unfair red tape

It seems that Mr Stupid has taken over from Mr Sensible when it comes to building regulations (LEP March 21).

On the one hand all replacement windows must be thermally efficient, on the other hand if you are in a conservation area they must be the same as those fitted 60 or 70 years ago, somewhat of a contradiction.

Similarly if you drive a modern car you must wear a seat belt, if you drive a care made before 1964 you don’t need to, does this make any sense?

I bought a house built in the 1930s, one of the original wooden window frames was rotten and the glass was broken.

According to the regulations any replacement has to be energy efficient, as it was a single glazed window and the replacement had to be double glazed this simple repair required building control approval.

This approval costs over £100, (the window cost £60), and requires a before and after inspection from a building control officer.

I wrote to ask whether it was better to leave the rotten window broken as I didn’t want to pay £100plus for permission to fix it and was told I had no choice, unless of course I paid a recognised company to do the installation, (£160 ), and they would supply a certificate of compliance.

Of course if I wanted I could leave the broken window and rotten fame as it was, regardless of consequential damage to the property because it was installed pre-regulation.

Mr and Mrs Rawat are in a similar Catch 22 situation. They had the required and legislated energy efficient uPVC double glazing fitted to their house, no doubt by a FENSA registered company.

Yet even though their neighbours have the same windows they are being discriminated against by ridiculous conservancy legislation which requires them to comply with Edwardian standards, wooden frames and single glazing according to original planning. That Preston City Council’s planning committee could be so stupid as to pass such regulation can be excused as they are only politicians, that the planning department enforces such regulations is beyond belief.

Have the lunatics taken over the asylum or are the rest of us so unconcerned that we don’t care, these fools are so in control of our lives that we can’t even replace a window in our own homes without paying them for permission and what’s more they decide on what window we can fit!

Mike McCarthy, Ribbleton

Hospital better than portrayed

Following an article entitled ‘Waiting Scandal: One in five cancer patients missed target times for treatment’ (LEP April 3) and stating that 257 patients at The Christie are waiting too long for treatment, I want to reassure patients that this is not the case.

Far from patients having to wait too long at The Christie and other hospitals in Greater Manchester and East Cheshire, we have been exceeding the national target for cancer waiting times consistently since October 2011. Unfortunately the information used in this article does not reflect this. Monitor and NHS England who commission and regulate our services, use revised data to monitor the performance of hospitals in Greater Manchester and East Cheshire which shows the national target has been achieved in our cancer network every quarter since October 2011.

I want to reassure patients attending The Christie that we recognise the importance of prompt treatment and always endeavour to ensure patients receive care and treatment within good time.

We are proud of our record of short waiting times and disappointed that this article implies otherwise. Patients are, and always will be our priority, and we remain committed to providing the very best standards of care and treatment.

Roger Spencer, interim chief executive, The Christie

Respect all laws in democracy

A Sheridan thinks that laws he doesn’t agree with should not be respected (letters March 30).

Or in the words of Len McCluskey, leader of Unite trade union, and I quote: “ my executive is recommending to members that the words ‘so far as may be lawful’ be removed from the rules governing his union’s actions.”

Remember this is the same trade union leader who allowed his shop steward goons to picket in force and raise a large inflatable rat at the home of a manager of a company his union was in dispute with.

Technically lawful but not likely to gather any sympathy for their cause, which it didn’t. No doubt we all disagree with certain laws on the statute book and have the democratic right to oppose and attempt to change those statutes by democratic methods. That is lawful due process. The alternative is to ignore and break laws we don’t agree with. That is anarchy.

The law at times may be an ass and may at times seem unfair but democratically formed laws separate us from socialist /fascist states that no sane person wishes to belong to.

Bernard Darbyshire, via e-mail

Taking election for granted

For David Cameron, being prime minister for a third term “might just be too many”. For many ordinary people, having him as prime minister for one term is more than enough.

Cameron assumes it’s up to him, not voters, when he leaves Downing Street. As one spokesperson put it, Cameron “is clear he will serve a full second term”.

And he has the gall to attack benefit claimants for their “culture of entitlement”. The Tories have revealed there will be a further £12bn of welfare cuts.

Cameron suggested that other Tories, such as Theresa May or Boris Johnson, could take over from him. The Tories have driven down workers’ living standards since they sneaked into office in 2010.

Cameron’s comments came just days after chancellor George Osborne delivered yet another budget attacking ordinary people. If the Tories are elected in May we will face tens of billions more of cuts affecting deprived areas like the North West. Cameron should go now with all his privileged mates.

Tony Wilson, Unison NEC member

North West