Reader’s letters - Wednesday July 1, 2015

A Chinese Maglev train. Britain's attitude towards the railways is backwards compared to other nations, says a reader. See letter
A Chinese Maglev train. Britain's attitude towards the railways is backwards compared to other nations, says a reader. See letter
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We’re on the wrong track

Well, it did not take long for the Government to announce their first backtrack on an election promise, did it?

The railways have been a problem since they were taken over just after the last war. Who knows what the private companies had in mind for the future of their companies? Maybe not a lot, but we will never know.

What we do know is that if the respective Ministers of Transport had been employed in the private sector, what they have done to the railways would have ensured that they would have been dismissed for gross incompetence.

After the war, it was decided that the way forward was to convert to diesel traction, despite the rest of Europe opting for forward movement into electric trains.

The UK Government considered this move far too expensive.

Steam trains which had many years of service left in them were scrapped and money was lost there. Diesels were introduced, along with many teething problems. Then, one day, someone said we should move to electrification. All the money spent on diesels could have gone towards the cost of electrics. Now we are told that everything needs to be upgraded and tracks which should never have been severed brought back into use.

One cannot help but wonder why they are doing all this and spending so much money, yet again. After all, the future surely is Maglev or something similar.

Germany has been testing Maglev for a while now and China has a very fast and functional service. Whatever happened to the attitude of the Victorians in moving forward?

K D Ashton via email

At my wit’s end over parking

I’m at my wit’s end, I can only think that public shaming will move this sad tale to a conclusion.

Briefly – I own a house in Bairstow Street and, for several years, have, like my neighbours, been happy to pay for the annual resident’s parking permit.

But the street is often impassable with double parking now.

The street is made up of granite setts, so the conventional yellow lines quickly break down.

As these lines have all but disappeared (18 months ago), enforcement is no longer possible.

I have contacted all the relevant agencies on many occasions, including my county councillor.

Promise, promises, promises, but no actions.

Everyone and their wife now exploit this free parking street.

I am regularly asked for payment for my permit, but feel this is wrong.

They speak of a new epoxy paint but do nothing. I pointed out to them that they have used blanket signage, with no lines, to enforce parking controls in other historic areas in Lancashire towns, thus removing the need for constant repainting.

Frank Howard Fisher via email

High prices at charity shop

With being a single parent, I am always on the look out for a bargain. However, having recently visited numerous charity shops, I can say they are not the place to find one.

They pay little in relation to staff wages, often just having a lowly paid manager doing all the graft, they avoid the high business rates paid by others for prime locations on the high street and the biggest plus is their merchandise is free.

However, the prices they now charge is exorbitant! Second hand T-shirts –£5.49. You could go to the supermarket and pick up a sparkling brand new one probably cheaper. Ten-year-old crime novels costing £1.49!

What really disgusts me is charity shops came into existence and became big moneymakers on the back of those they were created to help..those of us on low incomes, but it seems to me now they are the ones taking advantage of those people.

Name and address supplied

Looking for grandfather

My dad, Gary Wignall, discovered about three years ago that he had never known his biological father.

All we know of him is that his name is Peter Wright and my nana, Sheila Wignall nee Kitching, remembers that he may have had a connection to Hambleton, near Blackpool, at the time she knew him, around late

1960/early 1961.

He possibly had parents living there, although nobody in the village remembers him.

At that time he worked at Whittingham Asylum, Whittingham, near Preston.

It appears that he served in the Army for National Service.

I think one of the photos I have shows him and his friends wearing a Royal Army

Service Corps badge. I believe Peter would now be around 73 to 76 years old.

My dad and I would love to fill the mysterious hole in our past and also I’d love him to meet his soon-to-arrive great-granddaughter.

Suzanne Wignall via email

Citi Bikes for Guild Wheel

I recently saw an article praising Citi Bike Liverpool and how well it had taken off.

How about Preston City Council look at having Guild Wheel Citi Bikes?

By putting bike stations at various points for anyone to use for the day, it would mean anyone who doesn’t have a bike can enjoy the sights, scenery and tranquillity of Preston’s Guild Wheel. Good idea, don’t you think?

If I was a well-off business person, I think I would start it up myself. Unfortunately I’m not, but someone is quite welcome to use my idea.

Amanda Bennison, Grimsargh

Events were so wonderful

I recently sent letters to organisers regarding the Preston Music Festival and my incoming Mayoral Service.

I would be delighted if you could reference them in your newspaper as the events were so wonderful and all the participants deserve a huge thank you for bringing such vibrant performances to the community.

Many thanks.

Coun Margaret McManus, Preston