Readers’ letters - November 21

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Food for thought 
at Preston Market

I have been following the redevelopment of Preston’s outdoor market, pictured, with interest, most notably the in-depth report on progress (LP, November 16).

I would question Coun Peter Rankin’s judgement about getting it right for both traders and shoppers in terms of the actual outlets, preferring the 75:25 ratio of food outlets to other stalls.

On a recent trip to Norwich, I had the chance to see both its outdoor and indoor market.

The latter being the largest in the UK (so they tell me!)

It was an eye-opener.

On the one hand, the outdoor market was riddled with food outlets, mainly hot and largely takeaways with the proportion being about, yes, 75 per cent food to 25 per cent non-food stalls (and the total number was about 100!).

I also witnessed the fall-out from such an imbalance.

The detritus from the takeaways was plain to see, with overflowing litter bins, along with much discarded packaging and uneaten food spoiling the streets.

This started some distance away from the outdoor market, thus showing its effect was not merely confined to just around its perimeter.

Not only that, but on the few clothes stalls, their wares reeked of food, so I pitied the owners of those stalls trying to make a living.

By contrast, Norwich’s indoor market, which has few such takeaways, had far and away fewer litter problems surrounding it.

Oh, and the clothes stalls did not reek of food.

I sincerely hope that this imbalanced situation with the Preston market will include placing many litter bins all around the city centre, not just around the market, along with a team of cleaners to tidy up the detritus left by those anti-social customers of the market takeaways.

Hmm, Coun Rankin, some food for thought, eh?

Neil Swindlehurst

Walmer Bridge

development

Traders are revolting

Chorley town centre traders are revolting!

(In the nicest possible way, of course.)

Is it any wonder that the town’s traders are now petitioning the council?

They want them, without further delay, to clear up the mess created by the manner in which they have set about the construction of the (now defunct) extension to Market Walks, effectively killing off town centre trade.

By closing the major part of the Flat Iron car park and erecting massive barriers along the ring road, it has made shoppers turn away, thinking that there is nothing to see or do in our town.

Speaking to traders and shopkeepers, it is evident that they are all experiencing a massive drop in footfall and this is reflected in their takings.

All this at a time when the build-up to Christmas should be showing the opposite.

John Brennand, a market trader of 47 years’ experience, has organised the traders’ petition and hopes that the people of Chorley will show support for them, by signing a further public petition, to be available shortly.

It is no good Coun Bradley saying that we have alternative car parks when no town centre map is available to show them.

There is also no point in having a park and ride if the only people to know where it is are those on social media.

At the very least, it needs signs from the M61 and both ends of the town.

Graham Archer

Chorley

ZIMBABWE

Mugabe and the gravy train

I have just been watching the newscast from Zimbabwe.

It appears that, even with the coup by the military, Mr Mugabe, pictured, is not yet prepared to go gracefully.

Could this be something to do with the £100m that our idiot government gave them last year, and, no doubt, every year?

The only thing I fail to understand is how that man has hung onto power after dragging that country down to its knees.

I can only assume it’s our gravy train that has sustained him and his hangers-on.

I also believe we have stopped the handouts to North Korea, a mere £216,000, which has enabled us to increase our largesse to Pakistan to £463m!

Are we totally barmy?

On a completely barmy note, some bloke told me in confidence that Mugabe is a secret agent from Yorkshire because his code name is his name spelt backwards! I tried it and it became E-BA -GUM!

Sounds pretty convincing to me!

You have to laugh in this country , otherwise ...

ALLAN FAZACKERLEY

via email

zimbabwe

One tyranny for another?

As a mere TV onlooker of events unfolding on the streets of Harare in Zimbabwe currently, I am amazed that the happy crowds are so naive that they do not realise they are being duped.

The generals are using them, by allowing them their demonstrations, in an effort to persuade President Mugabe to quietly resign.

As loyal supporters of his tyrannical regime over a long period, I see little evidence that, once they have achieved their goals, they will not resort to business as usual.

Denis Lee

Ashton

city centre

Beggars are putting me off

I was in Fishergate on Friday, November 17 and counted three beggars: one near RBS; one outside Clintons; and one outside Primark.

It was reported in the LP the other week that the council was supposed to be monitoring the situation but no officials were there to move them on. I saw a lady gave one money. It was reported that money should be given to the homeless charity in Fox Street as not many beggars are actually homeless. Nearly all have accommodation.

I think there should be notices on lamp posts saying something similar in Fishergate/Friargate.

It really puts me off coming into Preston to shop. I go to Deepdale Retail Park or Manchester Trafford Centre.

Preston Mature Lady