Readers' letters - August 15

£300 fine far from being outrageous
A woman was fined for throwing away a cigarette endA woman was fined for throwing away a cigarette end
A woman was fined for throwing away a cigarette end

On the day the LP front page headline was ‘No Justice’, regarding the motorist who thought it acceptable to be paying more attention to his mobile phone rather on the road ahead, we have an unnamed correspondent who complains that a fine of £300, handed out to a lady for dropping a cigarette end, is “outrageous” in his/her opinion (Fines getting out of hand, LP Letters, August 8).

I consider this person’s remarks to be offensive to the justice system.

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Indeed I would go so far as to say that this person has no idea how the court system works. So let me enlighten this person so they may reflect on their seeming knee-jerk reaction.

First of all, the lady would have been issued with a FPN (Fixed Penalty Notice) of £80 for dropping the litter.

One must assume that she either chose to ignore this notice, for which she would have had 28 days in which to pay the fine, or she chose to contest the fine. Thus she ended up having to go to court and throw herself at the mercy of the court (hmm, she seems to be good at throwing things!).

Unfortunately she lost her case, so had to pay the, to me, not unreasonable fine of £300, a £220 increase on what she would have originally been asked to pay.

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The £220 would be chicken feed in comparison to all the administration costs and court officers’ wages in bringing this case to court and this increased fine alone should be a deterrent to anyone trying their luck in court.

It is, at least in part, doing its job of acting as this deterrent, as was the original FPN.

What I do find ‘outrageous’ is this lady’s deliberate act of dropping a cigarette butt.

No doubt this was full of all sorts of toxic, even carcinogenic, material, which was thrown on the ground where any toddler could pick it up, and to whom the consequences could be disastrous for the poor child should he/she mistakenly put it in its mouth.

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Yet this seems to be of no consequence to your unnamed correspondent.

And just how much could this cost the NHS?

Now do you understand that a £300 fine is far from being outrageous?

Neil Swindlehurst

Walmer Bridge

local politics

Councillors should pay

When a mechanic gets a job at a garage the owner will not provide the employee with his basic tools, that’s the mechanic’s responsibility.

Apparently the provision of basic tools to allow county councillors to do their job is not the councillors’ responsibility.

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Eighty-four LCC councillors have a basic allowance of £10,500 a year, a grand total of £880,000/year.

The majority of councillors have a special allowance, a grand total of £360,000 per year.

Therefore, on average, 84 county councillors are paid £15,000.

It doesn’t end there.

They also have no cost parking within County Hall, heavily subsidised meals, high subsidised travelling costs etc.

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I don’t necessarily disagree with councillors having reasonable allowances but when I read that the ratepayer will have to ‘fork out’ £500 to provide each councillor with a new mobile phone, which is a basic tool of their job, I think: “They are having a laugh”.

We are being told that the county council is struggling to balance the books and services will have to be trimmed.

I think county councillors should do their bit and provide their mobile phones out of their allowances. As they say, “Every little helps”.

Bernard Darbyshire

via email


Memory appeal

On behalf of the Longridge Heritage Centre Volunteers, I am writing to ask for memories of Longridge life during the Second World War.

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If anyone has some memories or stories from parents and grandparents that they would like to pass on, then please let the volunteers know.

Call in the Heritage Centre or email [email protected]

Jean Hill

Longridge Heritage Centre


I agree with you over ‘firenado’

Thank you Ms Adams for pointing out and ridiculing in your column (Firenado and other weather, August 10) this journalistic and ridiculous jingoism.

Nonsense, I completely agree with you.


via email

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