Money wasted on languages
In my opinion, too much money is wasted teaching foreign languages in this country, as there is simply not enough work for linguists.
The vast majority of translators and interpreters work freelance, as there is no other work available, and the result is there are too many of them bidding for too few (poorly paid) jobs.
Companies needing interpreters tend to contact language agencies, where they have to pay a hefty fee instead of trying to find an individual, who would do the job for much less.
I am a qualified German linguist who specialises in interpreting.
I did not go to university, but learned German by working in industry in Germany and studying the language.
With university fees at the level they are at, I certainly would not advise any young person to study a language at university.
Many parents are very pleased if their child gets an A at GCSE but this doesn’t mean, by a long way, they can speak the language.
Donald Rutherford, Leyland
Hospital staff were so caring
On November 14, my 91-year-old mum, who has dementia, had a fall in her bedroom. She was on the floor when we found her, with blood on her PJs. We lifted her on to her chair and I looked at her arm, there was a deep cut.
We took her up to Royal Preston A&E, it was 9am.
As soon as they looked at it, they said it would need plastic surgeons to see it, we were taken to the ward.
A doctor and nurse decided, because of her age and being on warfarin and other medication and the frailty of her skin, it would be safer to glue, put strips on and bandage it, which they did with care. We got home at 2pm. Within two hours, mum had taken some of the bandages off. I was able to put them back on.
At 1.30am, mum shouted for me, she had taken the lot off including the strips. There was blood all over again.
We rang Primary Care, who said they would contact the district nurses, who worked at night from St Catherine’s Hospice. They came out, took one look at it and said we needed to go back to A&E.
By this time it was 3am, again the doctors said it needed plastic surgeons to see it. A young doctor arrived, had a look, and decided to risk stitching, strips and bandages. Which he did with such care and had a lovely bedside manner, my mum actually went to sleep.
The young doctor was Dr Thomas Moors. We would like to thank him and the other staff we saw in A&E on those two days for their care and consideration of an 91-year-old confused lady, and the district nurses who have been out to dress mum’s arm over the last four weeks. Mum’s arm has now almost healed, despite the many times she has taken the bandages off.
We want to wish all of the above safe and peaceful New Year. Many thanks to you all.
From my mum Dorothy Crowther and her very grateful family.
Jean Brierley via email
Iconic brown hare in danger
Most people are unaware a third of dog pack hunts in England and Wales are nothing to do with foxes. Instead their quarry is our iconic and inoffensive brown hare, drastically declined in numbers by 80 per cent since 1880 and listed in 2011 in a report for Eden TV natural history channel to be at risk of extinction by 2050.
An Ipsos Mori poll has shown an 87 per cent public opposition to hare hunting and coursing, applying equally to both country and urban dwellers.
That children are being indoctrinated into these sadistically retrograde activities is a disturbing reflection on the lack of ethics and ecological awareness by a minority faction within our society.
John Rimington BSc, technical liaison officer, Hare Preservation Trust
Preston is a laughing stock
The sticker in a shop window said: If it ain’t broke, fix it until it is! Does any other known city have a main thoroughfare like Fishergate, devoid of street lights?
Can anyone at L (et’s) C (ause) C (haos) explain the purpose of the alterations between Lune Street and Chapel Street? Unfinished it may be, it looks a mess and leaves drivers in a state of perplexity.
Pedestrians also risk life and limb, since the pelican crossings were switched off at these junctions. The brick block sidewalks have also suffered in many spots, where work has been done on various premises.
It should also be obvious a proper pedestrian crossing is needed on Tithebarn Street, at the exit from the bus station, before someone gets flattened by the idiots who race through past the waiting taxis. Those coaches which bring children to the Guild Hall/ Charter Theatre need to move off and wait elsewhere, rather than obstruct Lancaster Road.
Give loyal Prestonians something of which to be proud. As it is, we are a laughing stock.
G W Richards, Bamber Bridge
World too slow to drop food
The world is very ready at dropping bombs!
Unready, or incapable, of dropping parachutes of food and bottled water to the destitute in the typhoon-hit Philippines.
The aid is stacking up in warehouses, unable to reach the destitute who are crying out for help in the distant provinces, and who complain that those same lorries carrying aid to the warehouses have just passed them without stopping. I presume military operations are conducted with more lethal efficiency.
Robin Parker, Chatburn
Motorists’ new year’s resolution
In this season of New Year resolutions, may I suggest a resolution for motorists to take up?
Please motorists, kindly rediscover a once very common courtesy – namely to always signal your intentions a few seconds before the manoeuvre takes place, when approaching a roundabout, turning a corner, and entering or leaving a kerbside parking space.
The almost universal disregard of these conventions is something that should be confined to the past. Let us all strive to make 2014 the year that motorists rediscover the Highway Code.
Coun Ron Sands, Heysham North Ward
Lancaster City Council