Reader’s letters - Thursday December 18, 2014

Fishergate's new shared space scheme continues to cause headaches (see letter)
Fishergate's new shared space scheme continues to cause headaches (see letter)
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Changes are for the worse

I feel the Fishergate improvement project has been a complete waste of local tax payers money and will have the effect of greater isolating the visually impaired people of Preston and the surrounding areas.

The very nature of being visually impaired necessitates that you have to become resourceful to carry out the simplest of tasks, you are unable to drive which means that you rely on the town centre, particularly with many retailers relocating to out of town shopping areas only accessible via car.

Convenient bus routes that allow you to access the town are very important to remaining independent, as well as access to train station links which this project also includes.

However, there is now a clear and present danger after alighting from public transport or being in the Fishergate area,removing the security of traffic lights or audio signals at crossing points has resulted in me feeling more disabled and at risk than I have felt since I first became visually impaired over 13 years ago. Tactile paving is not enough.

If there was a consultation period with the visually impaired community prior to the approval of this project I was unaware of it. Lancashire County Council’s shared space orientation event has come far too late. It smacks of the assumption that visually impaired people do not need to shop like those still lucky enough to have their sight.

Name and address supplied

Fracking goes against sense

We feel very strongly that permission for fracking should be withheld by Lancashire Council for these common sense reasons: It will ruin the countryside in the immediate and the long term; fracking has never been carried out without significant detriment to the natural world. Fracking is a risky technology in areas of complex geology.

Of course people will be aware of the unpredicted seismic event in the Blackpool area as a result of fracking. It would put great strain on water supplies as fracking demands water in vast quantities. Not only is water used in this process, it is polluted chemically and this requires disposal which in itself is potentially harmful, and, furthermore, incurs transport costs and therefore pollution.

The publicity materials, by Cuadrilla and the like, imply that the gas produced from fracking is somehow a low carbon fuel. This is ludicrous; the gas from fracking is methane - exactly the same as North Sea gas and equally polluting when it is burnt.

Lancashire people have a wealth of common sense and, as such, must surely be unhappy to stand by while this frankly half-baked idea goes ahead.

Steve and Carol Hosker, Southport

Air pollution needs tackling

The news in most daily newspapers is about the problem of air pollution and Longridge is no exception.

My concern is that air quality around this country town is becoming very poor due to inconsiderate households not having their chimneys swept, and from burning smoking coal, and household rubbish!

I have met several walkers in Berry Lane, and the adjoining roads, who have shown their displeasure in having to breath in toxic Fumes from household chimneys. I wonder if the Longridge council could issue a statement asking residents to burn only smokeless fuel, and only wood in wood burners, and not the smoking coal and any thing else which is combustible.

This pollutes and spoils the lives of many residents in the town who have breathing difficulties. I would like to think Longridge will stay in the top 10 of places to live and breathe in the UK.

Name and address supplied

Welcome to a true pioneer

I am delighted that the appointment of the first woman bishop has now been announced.

I look forward to sharing in the Revd Libby Lane’s Consecration and to working with her as a fellow-bishop here in the North West of England and nationally in the College of Bishops.

And it is extra special that the first woman bishop in the Church of England is someone who began her ordained ministry here in the Diocese of Blackburn. As a Diocese we send Libby the assurance of our love and prayer as she prepares for the privilege and responsibility of service as a Bishop in the Church of God.

The Rt Rev Julian Henderson, Bishop of Blackburn

Cutting trees for Christmas

What is it about Lancaster City Council and trees?

As soon as they reach any level of maturity it seems they’re deemed a nuisance and chopped down.

Oh there’s always a ‘valid’ reason – disease such as magnet for fly tipping, etc, etc, but the sad truth appears to be that the only good tree is a dead one stuck upside down and masquerading as art.

First it was the small copse at the edge of Billy Hill car park, now it’s the trees surrounding the Chieftain pub car park.

Was it really only two years ago during the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee that this country allegedly signed up to the planting of six million new trees?

Of course there may be a more Grinch-like reason behind the latest slaughter.

Is it just me or does anyone else think it’s terribly coincidental, that with Christmas just around the corner, the council will now be able to save on the electricity bill for the lights that have adorned the trees the past few years ... bah humbug indeed.

Name and address supplied

Into a spin over white goods

The headline read: ‘washing machine takes ten years to reach comet.’ And I thought it was bad when I once waited ten weeks to get my washing machine from Comet!

Darryl Ashton, Blackpool