Readers' letters - February 22

Let's start a public transport revolution

Friday, 23rd February 2018, 3:08 pm
Updated Friday, 23rd February 2018, 4:15 pm
Do you use public transport?

For more letters: Public transport. I myself am a car owner, and have recently had a go at using public transport to get to work.

I was pleasantly surprised.

The only way for our public transport services to properly thrive is for us to start using them.

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The problem is that if one has already purchased a car, paid for the insurance, paid for the tax and filled it up with fuel, it’s very rarely going to be more cost-effective to use public transport.

This is perhaps utopian thinking.

However, imagine if instead of spending our hard-earned money on personal vehicles, we instead invested it in our own public transport, which would create a world class infrastructure and make getting around using the service a dream.

The money we spend on cars flows out of the town never to be seen again, whereas if it were spent on our public transport, it would stay in the town, create jobs, boost the economy, and give us a public transport network that could be the envy of the world!

Revolutions start somewhere, but how can we tip the balance and get people out of their cars and on to buses and trams?

It’s nearly cheaper to use public transport instead of taking the car, but not quite.

If we could somehow incentivise public transport, then the revolution could begin!

Ross Chambers

Address supplied


No joined-up thinking

Well done to Syd Bullen for his letter, pinpointing the court judgment relating to the charges of landlords and investment (LP Letters, February 21).

But it’s all of a piece with the rest of the housing scene.

There are the young adults who can’t afford to buy a house so they are forced into renting.

The more demand there is for rented properties, the higher the rents will go.

There are, of course, no longer any statutory controls on rent levels.

In the meantime, our economists are bewailing the decline in growth of the economy, notably in consumer spending.

Where’s the joined-up thinking here?

Every household has only one pot of money, and if a greater proportion of that money is going on housing costs, there’ll be less left to spend on other things.

Leaving aside the cost of food and fuel, that’s another story in itself, folk will be making do with the old fridge or car, having one holiday away instead of two, getting more wear from their clothes, etc.

There are only two things to be said in favour of this 1950s-style mode of living: it’s probably better for the environment and it might do our souls good to be less attached to material things.

But I’m not quite sure that that’s what capitalism/our business community, (take your pick here) wants!

Ruth Grimsley

Address supplied


Impending disaster

A hard Brexit will be a disaster.

Boris Johnson and David Davies can waffle as much as they like but the Government still has not got a plan for Brexit.

Every independent survey has predicted that the economy will suffer when Brexit actually takes place.

The Government’s own internal forecast, which they were forced to make public, predicted that a no-deal Brexit would reduce growth in the North East by 16 per cent over 15 years and the North West and West Midlands by 13 per cent. This compares with London only reducing by three per cent.

The Conservative Government inflicted austerity upon our country which has created poverty and misery.

That is why 60 out of the 65 poorest constituencies voted to leave Europe.

Unfortunately the consequences of their decision is that their local economies will be even worse off after Brexit.

Time marches on and 20 months after the Brexit vote, businesses still cannot plan for the future.

We can not trust this government to negotiate a settlement which will be in the best interests of the country.

They are too busy arguing with each other and trying to keep themselves in power.

Another general election may not be popular but we need one in order to save our country from this impending disaster.

Mike Turner

via email


Close the loophole

I get so angry at hearing of elderly people in hospitals being blamed for the problems in the NHS. The blame lies solely with the Government, by closing care homes, cutting social services and allowing anyone from any country to come and use the NHS for free. It’s time to close this loophole.

J Shedlow via email