Readers’ letters - January 4

Fox hunts still meet in many areas despite the ban (see letter)
Fox hunts still meet in many areas despite the ban (see letter)
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Fox hunting belongs in past

More and more these days, we come across statements and laws which are contrary to our beliefs and affect millions of people.

We have laws, which should be enforced and kept.

It is about 10 years since the fox hunting ban became a law.

More than 100 fox hunting chases still exist.

No wonder even David Cameron wore this dandy hunting uniform, not so long ago.

The whole lot belonging to the Dickensian past – not the 21st century with their clown uniform and whip.

Those who break the law or carry out this cruel, barbaric act should be effectively given prison sentences.

C Victor De-Nagy, address supplied

No guardians
of countryside

We now find out what the Government means by the “Northern Powerhouse”.

It means allowing a steel works to close and the end of the last deep coal mine here in the north, with all the uncertainty and unemployment which this will entail.

It also means the desolation of our beautiful countryside by permitting a grid of fracking wells which will ruin the north’s valuable tourist industry and create only a few local jobs.

This kind of “Northern Powerhouse” will provide power to the affluent south at the expense of local business and local employment in the north.

It is astonishing that anybody in the north fell for this vague but bold election promise without requiring clarification.

This Government is only interested in pleasing their friends in big business in the south.

One used to believe that the Tory party were the guardians of the countryside.

Now we know they are not.

Paul Andrews via email

Not enough for energy needs

I read with interest the letter from Mr Haythornthwaite regarding fracking (LEP letters January 2), wherein he stated that energy is of national importance. He is quite right, but to put our “energy security” in relation to fracking into some kind of perspective, I offer the following.

These figures relate to the Eagleford Shale, but is there any reason to expect the Bowland Shale to be much different?

The calculations suggest that four months of a good shale well will produce enough energy to power around 11,000 homes for those four months. (Four months being the conservative drop-off point where it produces significantly less). Source https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/how-much-energy-does-fracked-well-produce-daniel-sweet

Based on these figures, even 100 wells drilled consecutively would only produce enough energy to power 1.1 million homes.

In 2014 there were 26.7 million homes in the UK. This figure does not include business usage.

I find it interesting that those who may stand to gain personally from fracking-related activities appear to think the public health impacts and the environmental damage to be a fair trade-off for what is a relatively negligible contribution to our energy needs.

Kate Styles, Lytham

Have a humbug happy new year

Well there we have it, Wizard of Oz, Mary Poppins, etc, gone for another year. Now let’s get back to reality, no beer for a month, the gym packed to the rafters for three weeks until the newcomers realise they can’t lose two stone in four weeks and everybody wishing a happy new year to people they don’t even know.

Stuffing the turkey was a “physical chore”, but an absolute delight of imagination with regards to those “guests” over- staying their welcome. Humbug happy new year.

JW Vintin via email

EU regulations led to disaster

Bad weather is nothing new in our rainy islands, so why is flooding suddenly overwhelming towns which have stood for hundreds of years? Politicians are blaming the crisis on climate change – but this man-made disaster was made to order in Brussels.

While there are a number of different factors to consider, none have had a bigger impact than EU regulations such as the Habitats Directive, Water Framework Directive and Floods Directive, which have hugely increased the difficulty and expense of dredging our rivers.

For generations, people who depend on the land for a living worked hard to stop sand and gravel from raising up the riverbed, using the silt to strengthen the embankments. Later, this important work was taken over by hundreds of local drainage boards, often elected.

Everything has changed in the era of EU regulation. Protecting people is now secondary to idealistic environmental goals, such as creating new wetlands – often by allowing flooding. Dredging projects are tied up in red tape.

Add to all of this the crazy EU policies which take away payments from farmers when they work to drain floodwaters naturally by planting environmentally-friendly shelter belts of trees, which Brussels bureaucrats class as “unwanted vegetation”, and you have a recipe for disaster.

The Environment Agency, which claimed it could not afford the few millions needed for a dredging programme which might have prevented billions in damage caused by flooding, would have money to spare if we left the EU, took back control of our own environmental policies and stopped handing between £33 and £55m a day to Brussels!

Arron Banks, co-founder, Leave.EU

Time to change award system

So once again the New Year Honours are out and although I congratulate all the recipients who deserve the awards, some of the recipients I find are somewhat baffling inclusions.

People are being awarded for just doing their job. But worse, people are being awarded for being friends with the right politicians.

The Honours should only be given to the few who have done over and beyond for charity and community. Real heroes and heroines, if you will.

CJK via email