Readers’ letters - April 26

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Driver should have to carry the can

I was concerned about the grandmother and her granddaughter who were threatened by the bus driver for having the temerity to be carrying a five litre tin of paint on a Preston Bus (LP, April 21).

To be threatened with being turfed off the bus and having the police called if they did not comply will no doubt cause some concern among the bus travelling public.

What else are we not allowed to carry on buses?

Are we getting to the point of being checked that we do not have more than 100ml of liquid in our bags and these liquids to be in clear bottles and a clear plastic bag?

What are the purposes of buses but to enable those who cannot afford the luxury of a car (or even a taxi!) to go to work, visit people and places and go shopping.

Do some bus companies have regulations as to the size of a briefcase or suitcase that one can carry to go to work or visit places?

Pity anyone who picks up a whole 10 litre of paint (sealed and unopened) from, say, a certain place on Preston Marina in order to paint the whole house at one go and then try getting on, say, the Preston Bus number 89!

You are not allowed to save money in this way, so you will have to buy two five litre tubs on two separate occasions and thus incur four bus rides, which is even more expense.

Could someone from 
the bus company explain 
the inherent danger from a 10 litre tin of paint as compared to a five litre tin?

However, when companies try to impose unreasonable demands, they will find their customers will find ways around ridiculous policies and here is my suggestion. If you want to carry more than five litres of paint on a Preston Bus, put it in a suitcase – not too big mind. Remember the rules!

How many times does one see a driver demanding to see the contents of someone’s suitcase and thus risk showing their customer’s ‘smalls’ in public?

If you cannot possibly police a policy, why have it in the first place?

Now, as for the bus driver who made a grave error of judgement, he should carry the can for his actions and be made to apologise in person, along with giving a big bunch of flowers for June and a big box of chocolates for Amelia. That may ‘Ameliarate’ the damage done.

Regular Bus Passenger

european union

Tony Blair is right on Brexit

It’s not often that I actively listen to any of Tony Blair’s ramblings, having been thoroughly disillusioned by both his term in power and the damage he did to Labour’s image.

However, listening to his take on the snap general election taking place and his comments regarding Brexit, I found to my dismay that he did actually make a sensible point regarding our leaving the EU.

The electorate’s vote was based purely on spin and rhetoric from both sides – none of us knew the true facts because there has been no comparison in our history of politics and so most of us voted from a gut reaction.

Too many migrants being allowed in, our laws being made in Brussels, foreigners taking our jobs, etc, swayed some voters to vote leave.

Alternatively, the fear of losing our jobs, the financial sector deserting us, the fear of companies relocating abroad swayed those doubters to vote stay.

However, as Tony Blair pointed out, Theresa May and some of the Conservatives are intent to deliver Brexit at whatever cost.

Quite sensibly, he explained that, if the severance is going to mean pain and hardship for us all, and even a more severe economic turndown, then the population of the UK should be allowed to have the final say as to whether we stay or go.

In other words, another referendum on the final outcome – but this time round we would be in a better position to make an informed decision given that we would then have all of the true facts and not merely pie-in-the-sky supposition as we had before.

Karl Sheridan

Address supplied

defence

Corbyn and his nuclear stance

Once more very serious divisions in the Labour Party over our nuclear deterrent have emerged.

In 1938, Winston Churchill said in a speech about defence policy that “ignorance is widespread. The most ignorant are those who pretend to have knowledge about defence matters when in fact they know very, very little”.

He could have been talking about Jeremy Corbyn and those who share his ideology.

The key point about the nuclear weapon system is it exists to deter a would-be aggressor from blackmailing you with a nuclear threat. Your enemy knows that he would receive an unacceptable response.

In brief, his threat would be implausible.

Corbyn has again said that if he were ever Prime Minister, he would never sanction using our nuclear deterrent.

Very laudable and very humane. Unfortunately, he clearly is incapable of realising that by stating this he has, at one fell swoop, destroyed our ability to deter.

The nation could not entrust him with its defence, especially at a time when North Korea is about to possess intercontinental missiles armed with nuclear warheads.

Colonel (retired) Barry Clayton

Address supplied

NOSTALGIA

Time aboard ‘HMS Inskip’

I consider myself an Honorary Prestonian having been sent to RN W/T Station (as it was in 1959) to assist in its commissioning as a radio electrical mechanic at the age of 17/18ish.

Who would have thought that, in 1967/8, I would be drafted to Inskip as a chief radio mechanician looking after the technical elements that enabled this Admiralty radio station to function worldwide?

Subsequently after my demob, the Admiralty called the station HMS Inskip (also used for cadet training) and ultimately it was ‘run’ by civilians (cost cutting?)

Having just returned from Preston after a family wedding, I took home several copies of Retro which were interesting. I therefore look forward to reading in Retro an article and photos concerning HMS Inskip.

Keith Norton

via email

nostalgia

Grandfather founded firm

I was very interested to read the feature on Atkinson Vehicles Ltd, the “Knights Of The Road” (LP Retro April 19).

The firm originated in Preston in 1907, when my grandfather Henry Birch Atkinson and his brother Edward, together with their brother-in-law George Hunt, founded Atkinson & Co.

Starting out as steam wagon repairers in the early 1900s, they produced a popular wagon of their own design.

Through a number of mergers, the company went on to become Atkinson Vehicles Ltd and then Seddon Atkinson Vehicles Ltd.

The fascinating stories told by Tony Johnson in the piece will have brought back fond memories to many Atkinson employees and truck drivers alike. It was a really nice commemoration for the 110 years since those well-loved vehicles took to the roads.

Mrs Jennifer Wilkinson (née Atkinson)

Ribbleton, Preston