'Vanity projects are no tall order abroad'

The world's tallest statue is in India and is called '˜Statue of Unity'.

Friday, 18th January 2019, 4:34 pm
Updated Friday, 18th January 2019, 5:39 pm
A correspondent is critical of overseas aid going to China and India

It stands on a 195ft plinth and is 597ft tall.

Before it was built and finished a few years ago, the tallest was in China. It measures 420ft tall. It is of The Buddha.

Before that, a decade ago, there was the tallest statue in India.

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There seems to be a contest between these two countries, not just for having the tallest statue.

Both India and China are nuclear powers; have imperial ambitions and they both have Overseas Aid Budgets to help establish themselves in Africa and South-East Asia.

There is one other noteworthy thing to mention. Both are recipients of United Kingdom Overseas Aid.

As our Government runs a deficit, this means that we borrow money in international markets and then give the money away for China and India to spend. Taxpayers’ money.

Ostensibly to help the poor.

In reality it is hard to believe the money is closely monitored and spent wisely.

Perhaps clandestinely we are paying for the above statue competition!

The vast majority of our MPs are not just against Brexit but also keen advocates of overseas aid, considered so important that, unlike the NHS or education or defence, it is ring-fenced.

Primary school places are at a premium, some old age pensioners live in damp houses and in silent misery, but our MPs, as a smug elite, know they are doing the right thing in currying favour with Asian grandees.

We could do with a few more statues ourselves to celebrate our myriad achievements such as leading the world in the fight against slavery, which we began in 1808.

Many countries in the world still tolerate slavery.

Roll on the next General Election when we can replace some of our out of touch MPs.

Edward Johnson


armed forces

Looking after UK veterans

I’m sure everyone across our region would agree that our armed forces do an amazing job in some of the toughest conditions imaginable.

The brave men and women in our Army, Navy and Royal Air Force guarantee our security, wherever the threat comes from.

This is why I welcome the news that the Government is to prioritise social housing for veterans suffering from mental health conditions, ensuring our armed forces get the vital help needed.

The Communities Secretary, James Brokenshire, has announced that former service personnel suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder will be prioritised for social housing.

As Mr Brokenshire has said, we have a duty to ensure our heroic military personal get the support they need when applying for a social home.

Under the plans, those with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and other mental health illnesses could be treated in the same way as those with physical injuries.

And while the vast majority of veterans thrive in civilian life, there are those who do struggle as a result of serving on the front line, whether finding a job or getting on the property ladder, which is why this commitment to them is so important.

Scott Benton

via email


Feel good with Mary Poppins

After the flatness felt after Christmas, an excellent antidote I would recommend is to go and see the new Mary Poppins film.

If you haven’t any youngsters to take, you will still enjoy it.

We took our grand-daughter, aged seven, but all three of us loved it.

The London scenes are amazing and there is a wonderful dance sequence with dozens of lamplighters. There is a very poignant song, Where the lost things go, and the effects, lighting and scenery ARE brilliant.

Emily Blunt is superb as Mary, pictured.

The only part I thought superfluous was the cameo role of Meryl Streep, a bit like Cher in Mama Mia!

Apart from that, it is a super ‘feel-good’ film and I would recommend it.

Janet Berry

Address supplied


Make up

your minds

Karl Sheridan bemoans President Trump’s questioning the facts about climate change /global warming (LP Letters, November 28).

The current bugbear is emissions from diesel engines.

The Mark 1 Range Rover had a 3.5 litre v8 petrol engine. It did about 18 miles to the gallon. The current diesel model will do nearer 30mpg, so a lot less Co2, which the climate change people tell us is the cause.

As for nitrogen oxides from diesel engine combustion, the atmosphere, we were told when I was at school in the 50s, was approximately 80 per cent nitrogen.

Therefore petrol engine vehicles will draw in this gas as well during combustion.

Is there proof that nitrogen oxides are not produced by petrol engines?

Therefore more petrol engine vehicles equates to more Co2 production.

Will the environmentalists make up their minds? We can’t go back to horse and cart, can we?

Tom Skupham