Readers' letters - May 22
Taking a look back at North End's season
In most people’s opinion, 2016/2017 season was a good one for Preston North End. It is to be hoped that they can push on next season. This last season was their second in the Championship and PNE equalled last season’s position and points. Many clubs in their second season in any division struggle to stay up. The club has to be congratulated on making this achievement on a tight budget.
A lot has been made about the increase in the number of goals North End scored and conceded. As a whole, the division scored 108 more goals this season and PNE contributed 19 of the extra ones.
The start and end of the season are not aspects that people like to dwell on for obvious reasons. That said, a good start can play a huge part in where a team finishes.
It is interesting to note how North End fared against the final top six, the bottom five and the clubs in between.
In the 12 games against the final top six, Preston won three and lost seven. Against the final bottom five they won four and drew six. Against the next top six, four games were won and six were lost. Preston’s performance were better against the next six clubs, with losing only three games and winning five. This seems to reflect an inability to do well against the top teams.
A malaise that needs to be remedied.
It is interesting to note that last season North End were only 12 points off a play-off spot and 22 off a relegation place. This season they were 18 off a play-off spot and 11 off relegation. The season was tight at the lower end.
Using 30 players does seem to be a lot of changes.
Ben Pringle was brought in as a ‘marquee’ signing. Simon Makienok was also a core signing but thought the gaffer didn’t love him. I sometimes doubt the manager’s judgement on his thinking and team selection.
North End are now in either their third or second year of their five-year plan. I would suggest Simon Grayson presents an outlook of making the opposition fear what his team might do, not the other way. I was not impressed over comments about Stevie May when he indicated that, if we were still in with a chance for a play-off place, May would not get much game time. He also criticised three defenders. The forwards who missed umpteen chances: hardly a word was spoken.
The beauty of football is we each have our own opinions. Hard facts don’t lie but their interpretation is another thing. I am sure there will be many who will not agree with what I think and so be it.
Pledge cash to health care
It is interesting to read the various promises dangled by prospective electoral candidates in exchange for our votes to their parties in the looming June General Election.
As sensible as many of these proposals are, one that particularly appeals is that of introducing a one penny increase in income tax hypothecated only for the NHS and caring for the elderly, to hopefully resolve the constant recurring financial reported
We all know that declaring income tax rises is anathema to the Conservatives, so they
will never declare them in their manifesto, but surely they could hypothecate that same equivalent amount of money to the NHS /elderly care from their overall budget? All comparisons of equivalent health care budgets within other Western nations show that our British NHS is generally underfunded, so this should have been addressed in their manifesto.
Nevertheless the most pressing problem facing our country at present will be the protracted negotiation of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU and it is imperative that we return a strong Government most capable of providing its citizens with such leadership.
It is apparent that the UK Government is in for a difficult time for at least the next two years, whichever party is elected, in proving to our electorate that they have attempted to provide an acceptable deal with the EU, even if it turns out in the end that no deal acceptable to us can be achieved, and so we have to walk away.
E J Tilley
Has this snap election come down to personalities on who we elect as the next Prime Minister?
Are we going to burn down our home because we do not like the curtains, or do we look at the real issues that we face?
Do we look at the NHS and emergency departments having to be closed or rationed?
Do we look at the cost of care for the elderly and disabled?
Do we look at the cost of education where schools in Preston are going to lose over £1,400 per pupil in the next two years and teachers will be made redundant so that we fund free school or grammar schools?
Do we look at one of Preston’s food banks that ran out of food recently or are we just going to look at ourselves and hope we never have to use the services that others need?
Has this election really come down to just personalities or is it about the real policies that affect us all?
Preston & South Ribble Trades Council
Scare in the community
At least one aspect of May’s manifesto proposal on care for the elderly requires careful scrutiny.
If going into a care home, the costs and standards of which vary enormously, an individual may opt for the better type, more expensive than the standard ones.
Assuming a property value of £300,000, home costs £1,000 per week.
In four years, two if a couple are involved, funding would then be from the state. Would there be a guarantee of remaining in their initial choice, or would they have to move to what could be a 19th century workhouse equivalent?
All it takes is a little thought
Sue Massey is right about our lovely hedgehogs
(LP Letters May 10).
We are very fortunate in having three or four hedgehogs visiting our small garden every night.
We provide meal worms and bowls of water, which is needed at this time of year.
We have a gap under our gate allowing free movement of these gorgeous creatures.
Hedgehogs are in decline.
Gardens are paved over and hedgerows torn up for housing.
Everything is against them and all it takes is a little thought. Leaving gaps under fences, never using slug pellets or other pesticides and providing a small living area – every little helps.
I was sorry to learn that there were no swings etc on Grange Park (LP Letters May 10).
I remember when I
lived on Moor Nook that there were six swings and a slide, and that was in the 1950s.
We used to go as kids for picnics amongst the avenue of fir trees, by the old kitchen ruins.
Oh happy days that could happen again.
Mrs V Ormerod