Reader’s letters - Tuesday July 07, 2015

Preston's Shared Space in Friargate' spot the difference between the road and pavement says a reader
Preston's Shared Space in Friargate' spot the difference between the road and pavement says a reader
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Good old days of TV viewing

I remember as a young boy sitting down on a Saturday night and watching brilliant TV programmes. There really was something for everyone. Variety was in charge. From The Generation Game to Catweazel, and even Dr Who.

But the Val Doonican Show was very entertaining – and Val introduced his patterned woolly jumpers to the nation – not to mention a rocking chair!

Brilliant family entertainment at its very best.

And the amazing thing about these variety TV programmes was they easily attracted up to 19 million viewers every week.

Truly quite staggering viewing figures.

TV was brilliantly entertaining in the 1970s.

There was comedy which mocked ‘racism’, ‘religion’ and ‘sexism’ – and no one ever took any offence. We laughed more at what was going on.

Fast forward to present day – and present day TV – and there isn’t one single programme, show or sitcom that can command anywhere near 20 million viewers on a weekly basis.

Today, the weekend TV listings are absolutely dreadful, repeats rule the TV channels. When at one time, weekend TV was absolutely essential viewing.

What made these shows and sitcoms all very popular and highly successful was there wasn’t any ‘political correctness’ or ‘health and safety’ around to invade our TV enjoyment. Or, our everyday lives!

Yes, there are certain programmes and sitcoms being repeated today, but that’s because there aren’t any talented comedy or satire writers that can create new sitcoms and, if there were, they’d be at serious risk of upsetting and offending those PC do-gooders!

Well, that’s my lot on TV memory lane.

Happy TV watching to everyone. And, finally, Rest In Peace Val Doonican.

Darryl Ashton, Blackpool

A victory for common sense

Lancashire County Council’s decision to reject the applications for exploratory fracking was a victory for common sense.

It was a victory for campaigners and for citizens who have a concern and feeling of responsibility to protect the area in which they live, all of whom have been living under the shadow of this threat for many months. They have all worked hard to communicate this issue and to raise awareness of a real threat to our environment and our way of life.

But above all this was a shining example of communities working together, a concept which our Government has promoted. We trust Westminster is happy with this decision, one which was arrived at by a development control committee whose members were also under commercial and other pressures, and with the eyes of the world upon them.

Those committee members, elected councillors, also justify a great deal of credit for taking notice of their constituents, for putting our county first, and for arriving at a fair and democratic decision. The correct decision. All of you deserve a massive vote of thanks...a great team effort!

J Bailie via email

West ‘lulled into a deep sleep’

It may be of interest to the Victorian “anti-frackers” that their protest was reported on Russian television. That is because Russia doesn’t want the UK to become energy independent of them.

When the Berlin wall came down, a lot of people in the West thought that communism was done for. Not at all, there have just been a change of tactics from confrontation to a sort of infiltration. The West has been lulled into a defenceless sleep. Putin is now rattling the sabre, he has announced the building of 40 multi­-headed ballistic missiles which, according to him, cannot be stopped. I wonder why the anti-Trident protesters, CND and Socialist Workers are not protesting outside the Russian embassy?

Veritas via email

Could you help with project?

My name is John Evans and I am a postgraduate history student at Birkbeck College in London.

I am currently working on a project about the experiences of Welsh people who came to live in England in the 1920s and 1930s to escape the impact of unemployment and the depression in Wales.

My research is also looking at the way English and Welsh politicians reacted to (or encouraged) the mass migration to England, and its impact on Wales and the majority of Welsh people who remained there.

I’m doing research in the National Archives, other archives, in newspapers, and in London and Oxford, but I am also very keen to get hold of any personal accounts from the time (including diaries and letters) which give a flavour of how Welsh migrants and those already in England were treated and regarded by local councils, employers, newspapers and the population as a whole.

Do any individuals or Welsh societies in Lancashire have any documents from the inter-war period of this sort?

If so, would you be willing to let me see them, and potentially quote from them in the dissertation I’m writing?

Also, are you aware of anything in your area that might be of relevance to me – for instance in local collections or libraries, or relating to councils and local businesses?

If you are able to help me in any way, I would be extremely grateful. I would obviously be happy to meet the costs of any agreed photocopying of documents and of postage. Please get in touch with me on 07500 003619 or via email at if you think you can help.

John Evans via email

Puzzle of city’s ‘shared space’

The picture of Fishergate, Preston, (LEP June 23) perfectly ‘frames’ an issue which has puzzled many readers, and provides a subject for quiz buffs.

First off is spot the difference, an observational challenge. Next is more cerebral; why the difference? Answers on a postcard please. Employees of Lancashire County Council not eligible.

For the record, I love the arrangements and have advised the Central Gateway Project accordingly, at length!

Grinning Grandad George via email

Grinning Grandad George