Reader’s letters - Friday June 26, 2015

Parishioners have not been able to attend  St Ignatius RC Church in Preston city centre since November
Parishioners have not been able to attend St Ignatius RC Church in Preston city centre since November
Have your say

‘A mistake has been made’

It is now seven months since the Bishop of Lancaster, Rt. Rev Malcolm Campbell, closed St Ignatius Church to English Catholics and it is quite obvious that this experiment has not worked.

The 130-strong congregation of St Ignatius have voted with their feet and are not attending the two churches designated by the Bishop, namely English Martyrs and St Joseph’s.

Instead the congregations of St Wilfred’s and St Gregory’s have increased by some 50 per cent and consequently the Lancaster Diocese is losing over £20,000 p.a.

Surely the Bishop is not too proud to acknowledge that a mistake has been made, and reopen St Ignatius to its loyal Parishioners.

Please Bishop, redeem yourself in the eyes of the people of Preston and regain the esteem and affections in which you were once held.

M Cardwell via email

Fracking will ensure energy

Much publicity has been given in the media to those arguing against shale gas extraction but with very little scientific analysis or investigation of their often irrelevant and inaccurate statements.

I have listened to the cases both for and against and have found Cuadrilla very open and informative of their developments, unlike many of their opponents who simply try to shout down and ridicule any one putting the case in favour of fracking for gas extraction.

Most people agree our country needs to develop new energy sources, within our nation’s control. Imported energy leaves us open to unpredictable political risks, price fluctuations outside of our control, provides little or no employment locally and no wealth creation for this country.

While backing shale gas, I also advocate developing more sustainable sources of energy; I already have thermal and PV energy generation at my home.

However, at the moment, sustainable energy cannot provide the power as and when it is needed, and so fossil fuel or nuclear are and will be required for the foreseeable future.

Both of these are right here in Lancashire now. Nuclear provides valuable jobs and shale extraction will in the future.

Those that say it will not are often the same people who claim there will be a forest of drilling derricks if permission is granted. The latter will not be the case but where there are rigs there will be a requirement for operators and the other jobs in support.

Properly regulated shale gas extraction, as proposed by Cuadrilla and the Government, will ensure our energy supply, create local and national employment, raise the skill base of local labour as well as providing longer term financial benefits to the communities from where the gas is extracted.

David Kenworthy, Lytham resident

Shale gas jobs for Lancashire

My company provides managed IT services to companies across the United Kingdom, from our administrative offices in the Fylde.

If Cuadrilla’s planning applications are approved this week, we plan to hire two new network engineering members of staff.

They would be based within Lancashire and one function of their jobs would be to monitor and support Cuadrilla’s infrastructure.

Planning approval will lead to the creation and support of not just Lancashire-based oil and gas specialist jobs, but local jobs (with transferable skills) throughout the supply chain – helping qualified local residents build careers in the local area.

I hope Lancashire County Council will look favourably upon Cuadrilla’s planning application.

Sean Lord, Director of Network Box Technology (UK) Ltd


Past family businesses

Many thanks for inserting the article and photograph about John Edwin Johnson, who happens to be my grandfather (LEP June 23).

Although he died before I was born, I feel that there is a need to clarify or correct some of the information printed.

John Edwin Johnson was not a jeweller or watch maker but had a wheelwright/coach building business in Fylde Street, Preston.

His father was John Thomas Johnson, born in Carlisle in 1847, who was an auctioneer/dealer.

John Thomas Johnson’s father was also John Johnson, born in Dublin in 1825. It was he who originally set up the jewellers and watch making business at 10-11 Orchard Street, Preston, and records show that he was still there as late as the 1881 census. In the 1870s, John Thomas Johnson (his son) also had a business along similar lines lower down in Orchard Street, but he eventually disappeared from our records.

There is still further research to be done regarding the Johnson family businesses in Orchard Street, but I hope the information I have given helps in some way.

Mel Johnson via email

Talks on First World War

I would like to draw your readers’ attention to a series of lectures on the First World War that have been set up at Kirkham Grammar School.

The school is keen to commemorate the war by giving both our pupils and a general audience the chance to discover more about the Great War.

Professor Jay Winter will be speaking on Monday, July 6, at 7.30pm, with further lectures planned for October 1 and December 1. Professor Winter is from Yale University and is travelling to speak on the Lost Generation of the war. Richard Van Emden visits the school in October and is a well published historian and documentary maker, best known for his work on The Last Tommies and Harry Patch.

The series ends when Professor Sir Hew Strachan joins us on December 1 to place the commemoration in context in this centenary of the war.

Tickets are now on sale from the school for the lecture on July 6 for only £5, it is free for children accompanied by an adult. A series ticket for all three lectures is available for £10. All profits will be donated to the Royal British Legion. We look forward to welcoming you to the school.

Simon Duncan, Kirkham Grammar School, 01772 684264