Readers' letters - June 8

EU good for our industries

Wednesday, 8th June 2016, 4:40 pm
Updated Monday, 13th June 2016, 12:37 pm
An Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft takes to the sky. A reader says being part of the EU is good for manufacturing industries

Ever since I was a boy, I have loved watching aircraft.

In my early years, I watched the Canberra aircraft bank over the Lancashire hills, flying to and from the English Electric manufacturing plant.

Time moved on and there came the development of the TSR 2, a brilliantly designed aircraft set to replace the ageing Vulcan bomber in the cold war era.

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What happened?

The UK Government ran out of money for the project.

Australia rejected the aircraft in favour of the cheaper F111 subsidised by large orders from the USAF.

The realisation soon came that, as a country, the UK could not afford to develop military aircraft on its own and we needed multi-national co-operation.

The Tornado was developed with German and Italian partners, and what a superb aircraft it is.

Following this, with additional partners, came the Typhoon, another brilliant aircraft.

In the civilian aircraft field, the Airbus series of passenger jets have been developed and this, in my lifetime, has probably been the most successful industrial project ever.

An additional benefit has been to Rolls Royce, working alongside Airbus, developing engines with the right power and economy. These products lead the world in the technology.

Projects such as these could have only come to fruition with European co-operation and tariff-free movement of goods and materials.

I simply cannot believe that Brexit campaigners want to throw this away.

I can only think that they have little knowledge of manufacturing and what can be achieved by collaborative working.

Hundreds of thousands of well-paid jobs depend on these projects, and these ill-informed enthusiasts for European division are driving the UK further into manufacturing oblivion.

For these reasons and others, the Remain option in the forthcoming referendum is by far the most convincing.

Mr GW Collinge, Carlisle

A tax for older Brexit voters?

At last I’m a fully paid-up member of the pensioner’s club or the ‘Daily Mail generation’ as my son cheekily describes us.

As a new member, I have all the time in the world to do the things in life I was always too busy to do before – like leaning on the garden fence, washing the car, looking after the grandkids, generally grouching and contemplating the differences between the generations.

The biggest generational difference seems to be on Europe where the majority of oldies want out and the majority of youngsters want in.

To get round this split, if my old gang wins, then we should take responsibility for our decision.

Most of us pensioners don’t have to worry about jobs, mortgages or earning a pension since we are already spending the proceeds.

So in order to take our fair share of the problems which economists say are likely to arise, I believe we should introduce a Brexit Tax on state and private pensions to cover any cost of leaving Europe.

If the economy recovers quickly, then the tax could be reduced.

Certainly it would be a tad unfair to expect younger people starting out or families with mortgages to pick up the tab for our decision.

One side benefit is that Brexit Pension Tax collection would create a few jobs to help offset rising unemployment if we leave.

I tested the theory on my wife and she thinks it’s a great idea provided there is an exemption for those who voted to remain.

My son and daughter are in favour too and think I should just cut out the middle man and pay the tax directly to them.

What do your readers think?

Tommy T Turner, Walton-le-Dale

Here’s a third choice for voters

In terms of damage limitation, wouldn’t it make most sense for the public to spoil their ballot papers and emasculate this dreadful EU referendum?

Remain are unconcerned that over the last 40 years we’ve given away power over our laws without a single ordinary citizen approving it.

Leave want to take an action that will lock us out of the EU forever, lead to short-term economic issues and open a path for separatists to break up Britain.

If we ‘vote none,’ the least damage is done.

I am writing this letter to ask local people to consider the third, least damaging option.

Spoil your ballots on June 23 and let’s put our faith in real democracy.

Please visit my blog at

Jonathan Hawkins via email

We lost battle but won war

If Germany were to beat England, 3-1, at Wembley, then declined to turn up to give us an opportunity to level the score, would that then go in the records as an English victory?

Many historians tend to look at Jutland in that way and it’s quite true that the High Seas fleet didn’t chance its arm again, but it’s equally true that we lost three more ships, including three battle cruisers, and over 6,080 men to the German losses of eleven ships and 2,551 men. No manipulation of the facts can show that other than a German victory.

However, it was best summed up at the time by a newspaper headline which said “the prisoner has assaulted his jailer but is still in jail”.

Mike Murray, Freckleton

Wildlife needs

good protection

Last week, the Farming Minister was reported as stating that green directives are ‘spirit-crushing’, the EU Birds and Habitats Directive would go and a more flexible approach would follow.

This offers a clear indication of what we can expect for the environment if the UK left the EU. We don’t need a more flexible approach to environmental protection. We need a strong and wise will to hold the line for the standards which underpin our quality of life.

Ian Carstairs via email