Readers’ letters - February 19

Alan Christie, who turned wasteland into an allotment and wildlife haven has been ordered to return it to its former state. See letter
Alan Christie, who turned wasteland into an allotment and wildlife haven has been ordered to return it to its former state. See letter
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Chance for secure energy

Darryl Morris’s column, Fracking and Polluting of Democracy, is incorrect in its assertion that our current appeal rests on a decision “not to contaminate your water, risk cancer rate increases and birth defects” (LEP February 15).

None of these claims about our proposed shale gas exploration sites are true and ill-founded and irresponsible scaremongering of this kind is extremely unhelpful to a community which Mr Morris claims to stand up for.

In fact none of these issues were raised as a reason why Lancashire councillors did not approve our planning applications and the grounds for refusal were actually planning issues of traffic, noise and landscape.

In portraying the appeal as anti-local democracy, Mr Morris references Martin Luther King and the suffragettes. He should be proud that this appeal does in fact follow their lead, with equal rights of democracy for all.

Local groups and NGOs appeal planning decisions all the time. In this case we have exercised our democratic right to appeal.

Local councillors chose to ignore their council’s own planning officers and legal advisors. The democratic planning process means that they are perfectly entitled to do that, just as Cuadrilla is perfectly entitled to challenge and appeal their decision.

Democracy in the planning process does not stop at the door of County Hall, much as some opponents of shale gas might wish it to.

The UK is fast moving to a position where we will be almost entirely reliant on imports from other countries, many less well-regulated than our own, for the gas to heat and light our homes and offices, to cook our food, as well as our industrial and manufacturing processes. These imports will likely be less secure, more expensive and have a higher environmental impact than our own UK gas.

Surely the “world we are leaving for our children and grandchildren” that Mr Morris wants to see would be best served not by ill-founded scaremongering, but by safely realising our own indigenous source of natural gas, which can create jobs and increase revenue for the local area, as well as ensuring a secure, low carbon energy future for the UK?

Matt Lambert, Director of Government Affairs for Cuadrilla

Flying in the face of sense

As someone who lives in Goosnargh, I have watched with interest and pleasure the efforts of one of our number to convert what was a rank and desolate central area in our community into a productive and organised asset (LEP February 17).

Prior to this gentleman’s initiative, that passage of land had been abandoned and acted as an open invitation to those who wished to dispose of their rubbish to the detriment of us all.

And don’t think, by any means, that what he has done is simply create an opportunity for his own selfish benefit.

No, there now exists a wonderful wildlife area and is a point of interest for young and old to enjoy freely. How can it be then that, despite all these positive qualities, the council has ruled that he must return it to the former neglected nuisance that it was?

This bureaucratic nonsense flies in the face of common sense let alone common justice.

Please think again!

Tim Wood, Goosnargh

Fine rise for using mobile

The fine for using a mobile phone at the wheel should be increased to £1,000 and nine points on your licence.

Perhaps then, these brainless idiots who put lives in danger might think twice because a second offence would result in a ban.

Brian Kelk, address supplied

Reflections on North End game

Re: PNE Face in the Crowd, I was pictured on the right hand side of the page, wearing the PNE hat (LEP February 15).

It was an eventful day, perhaps it could be said the match was lacking in real quality for the first 15 minutes.

Then up stood a determined Paul Gallagher, showing the desire and audacity to take the chance, and it went off big style in the Preston end.

A goal keeping error from Ikeme gifted a tidy slot home for Reach, who has been outstanding as of late for us.

The afternoon was optimised by John Welsh’s crunching slide tackle, which rounded off a successful day for fans and players alike.

I think it’s important for Preston fans to remember what the season is about, which is guaranteeing safety in this league.

Top half is an absolute dream. It shows the leaps and bounds the club has taken in recent years.

Personally, I don’t think there shouldn’t be a mention of anything above.

The players are showing the desire and optimism to show what this club is about, heart and soul.

All in all, another successful away game, with multiple strengths shown from individuals. The fans were fantastic.

And I can safely assume that Sir Tom would have been proud of the fans, and credit to the Wolves fans who paid respects also.

Thank you for allowing me to get in touch and express my thoughts towards the match.

George Kneen-Cookson via email

No coverage

in nationals

Regarding the article National crown is reward for Laura (LEP February 16), it’s a pity that nothing appeared in any of our national papers again.

On December 24, I emailed the sports editors at the Daily Express, Daily Mail, Daily Telegraph and The Times after Laura Massaro become the World Number One Women’s Squash Player.

Did anything appear in any of our national papers? Nothing!

It’s an utter disgrace, especially when they are looking for success stories in women’s sport!

The LEP has been brilliant in the coverage of Laura’s successes over the years.

John Gibson

Leyland Lions Junior Squash

& Racketball Club