Readers’ letters - February 20

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It’s time to speak out against fracking

I note with interest that Cuadrilla’s fracking friends have mounted a serious letter writing campaign to local papers trying to denigrate anti-fracking protesters and make fracking seem more acceptable to the general public (LP Letters, February 9).

This is a still a democracy and people still have a legal right to peaceful protest.

The fact is there are far more people opposed to fracking than those who support it, so inevitably there will be protests, especially when it is being forced on us.

Protest takes many forms and, with more than 60 per cent of the UK threatened by unconventional fossil fuel extraction, that opposition is growing, especially in the areas under threat.

I would encourage people to go along to the Preston New Road site or to the weekly Solidarity Saturday events at Maple Farm to see for themselves and learn more about the issues.

It is very obvious most of the protesters are local, come from all walks of life, many taking time off from work or other commitments, to show their opposition.

The number of car toots in support clearly demonstrates that the majority of passing motorists oppose it too.

Fracking is a major national issue and will obviously draw in many protestors from other areas too.

That is their right and is only natural.

If people do not want Lancashire to become the largest gas field in western Europe, now is the time for them to speak out.

I am sure we will hear a lot more from both sides in the coming weeks but I would urge readers to make up their own minds and not believe all they hear from the industry and their proponents.

Barbara Richardson

Via email

health services

A lot of waste in the NHS

One of the major problems with the NHS is the level of waste.

Take this example of what happened with my wife.

A few months ago, she was unfortunate enough to have a stroke.

Through her own determined efforts, and with the magnificent support of the NHS, she has done well and is on the way to some semblance of mobility.

The downside is that our small home is now a repository to a wheelchair, two Zimmers, a bath seat,

a frame that goes round

the lavatory, a sloping seat for the kitchen which has only been used twice, and

a four-legged walking

stick.

As my wife’s mobility has improved, we have tried to return the items she no longer needs, but they don’t want them returned.

As an example, the Zimmer frame has only had seven weeks of use, is in a new condition and cost the NHS about £50 to buy.

The excuse for not wanting it returned, as with all the other aids, is that it costs more to have an appliance refurbished for re-use, that it would cost to buy a new one.

So the NHS has paid hundreds of pounds for disability aids that are now cluttering up our small home and are quite unconcerned about recycling their investment in the equipment that they have purchased for my wife.

Multiply this wasteful extravagance by the thousands of unused disability aids out there and you will understand why

the NHS is always crying poverty.

There are other methods that are used to suck money from the system and I realise that the example I have given is probably small potatoes in the grand scheme of things, but making the best use of money can be just as effective as going to the government and doing an Oliver Twist by asking for yet more cash.

‘Uncle Jimmy’

Preston

community

Setting the record straight

Being an I & T Neighbourhood Councillor, I feel compelled to write and respond to the article headed, City warden ‘vigilante’ fears (LP February 15).

It would appear from the article that your reporter approached Preston City Councillor Pauline Brown, asking her to comment on the idea of a community warden.

Coun Brown, rather than step back and consider a sensible response, belittled our neighbourhood council.

It should be pointed out that a community warden is just one of the innovative ideas to address the concerns expressed to us by our community and have not even been discussed by our council nor have the duties been defined.

In order to identify the issues that concerned our community the most, our council sent a consultation document to each home.

Coun Brown, not a member of our council, wrongly stated that only 300 had responded. In fact, the response was 12 per cent– a figure any similar organisation would have been delighted to receive.

Unfortunately, this was compounded by your reporter stating that “only 300 people replied to the survey, out of 38,000”.

I don’t think we have 38,000 people living in Ingol (although I could be wrong).

I strongly believe in a “free press” but any articles and comments should be unbiased and fair.

Coun Derek Bevan

Ingol & Tanterton Neighbourhood Council

libraries

Mystery of fate of library books

I read with interest the very informative article written by your reporter Catherine Musgrove, entitled What has happened to libraries’ books? (LP February 15).

Further to this article, a very reliable, but anonymous, source from inside County Hall has reported that 6,000 books from Whalley library alone have been pulped!

I wonder if this is a similar figure from the 28 libraries closed recently?

This, along with the comment from Labour Coun Ron Shewan, who said the best way to deal with the stock was to “get rid”!

This is a diabolical way to treat books which I have always been brought up to respect and enjoy.

What is the cost of this to us, the taxpayers of Lancashire?

Apparently it is rumoured that Fulwood Library might become a Subway sandwich branch. That is food for thought! Have any other readers views on this squandering of money to supposedly save money?

Lancashire resident who values books more than LCC

food

Grow your own vegetables

In Britain, there seems to be a shortage of vegetables.

One method is to grow our own as we used to do, such as lettuces, tomatoes and cucumbers in flowerpots indoors if we didn’t have a garden. These are all fresh products, fresh to the dinner table, cheap and you use them as you want.

David Treacher

via email