Letters - December 12, 2013

The 'prisoners' in the Ormerod Trust show Ormerod: Then and Now, practising looking mean in rehearsals
The 'prisoners' in the Ormerod Trust show Ormerod: Then and Now, practising looking mean in rehearsals
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The Ormerod trust

A fine production

In a recent production at the Lowther Pavilion in Lytham, the 40-year story of the local charity The Ormerod Trust was told on stage.

It covered the early days, when an original building in St Annes housed people who were then called “mentally deficient” (among other things).

It followed the journey of this remarkable organisation through decades of challenging public policy.

And it revealed the present-day work of the Trust, which includes supporting individuals in the community and making it possible for them to achieve their goals – such as getting married or holding down a job.

Most extraordinary of all was that this production was staged entirely by service users and staff of The Ormerod Trust itself, including groups from Fleetwood, St Annes and Lytham.

Its aim was to inform, entertain and inspire and, as part of the audience lucky enough to witness this amazing production, we can only say that it achieved this ambition fantastically.

We would like to add our congratulations to writer-director Linda Hampton and her incredible team of Ormerod drama group members for such a memorable experience.

Tricia and 
Michael Davies

Long 
Buckby, 
Northamptonshire

Season of goodwill?

Not with Royal Mail

I agree wholeheartedly with Neil Kendall about the cost of postage affecting the number of cards we send.

To so many of us Christmas cards are the only way we now keep in touch with old friends and loved ones we rarely see anymore.

The cost of the cheapest postage at 50p makes many of us think again about buying cards.

This is so wrong. Christmas cards send love and affection and the person at the other end knows this.

Yet the cards alone are not cheap and I, for one, like to pick and choose a bit.

Why does the Royal Mail do this ?

Why does the Royal Mail have strikes on Saturdays?

Why are there so few staff on duty that the queues continue outside the post office and straggle across the car park?

This is Christmas, the season of goodwill, and who wants to grumble about the price of postage and the fact that some people literally cannot afford to send love and remembrances to those they have known and loved for years?

Joan Bithell

Lockwood Avenue

Poulton

Wages in pArliament

Cost of an MP

It appears a noble gesture for Paul Maynard MP to say he will give his 11 per cent pay rise to the needy groups supporting youngsters and the elderly if re-elected in 2015.

But although perhaps well meaning, he must realise surely that this will appear to many of the electorate as a means of buying favour and popularity rather than earning it by serving his constituency in the expected way.

We all know these rises should not be awarded across the board so if most MPs are saying this then why is it going through?

Heck! If any employee in the private sector said to his boss, I dont want this rise, the employer wouldn’t have to be told twice to strike it from the books!

Ironically, MPs don’t now directly award themselves a rise, so the responsibility lies with those that have put this through.

It will raise their income to the equivalent of £1,400 per week basic plus their usual expense claims while millions of workers in the country are drowning in the tidal wave rises in cost of living, on the minimum wage, a mere one fifth of MPs’ basic salaries.

This leaves the likes of Paul Maynard between a rock and a hard place, but then how many MPs around the land on previous occasions when they DID have control, awarded themselves rises during tough times?

Chris Wiseman

South Shore

* I am led to believe a lot of backbenchers think they deserve to be paid more.

I don’t think that would actually be said in public, as they have their career to think about.

Everyone is tightening their belts, some have to use food banks and some choosing between heating or eating.

We have heard in the past Mr Cameron saying he cannot do anything about the pay increases as it is an independent authority. Also Labour leader Ed Miliband saying if he becomes Prime Minister after the next election he would stop it. Both say they should not be getting a pay increase. Apparently only the Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has accepted the independence of the decision.

All MPs should accept the pay rise, pay the income tax on it, and donate their £7.600, split between the Royal British Legion and Help the Heroes charities, because it was our Government that sent our boys and girls into Iraq and Afghanistan.

This would be a brilliant gesture. They could even donate their yearly rise for the whole of the next Parliament, due to the fact the Royal British Legion and Help the Heroes are struggling during these austere times .

I hope everyone will contact their MP and pressurise them into this.

Keith Bagot

by email