Letters - January 14, 2015

Victoria hospital: A reader has praised the tireless work of the staff, especially on the acute medical unit
Victoria hospital: A reader has praised the tireless work of the staff, especially on the acute medical unit
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Proud to be a small part of ‘Vic’ team

Nurses working hard

Support

I have worked at Blackpool Victoria Hospital as a part-time staff nurse, a sister in the intensive care unit and the Cardiac Unit, from 1964 and 2000.

I retired and went back as a bank nurse and then as a part-time nurse on the acute medical unit.

So I have worked through all the flu epidemics, but I never saw the support given, as given to the acute medical unit where I now work as a volunteer.

All the senior nursing staff were working hard making beds, helping the staff with patients and generally doing all they could to help – even making the staff cups of tea as they were too busy to go on their breaks.

I felt very proud to be a very small part of the team and of ‘the Vic’ in general.

Patricia Bateson

Cottesmore Place

Blackpool

New leaflet due out

Fracking

I write in response to a report “Anti-Fracking Group In A Row Over Leaflet” (Gazette January 8).

I would like to clarify that Residents Action On Fylde Fracking (RAFF) has not withdrawn its newsletter ‘Shale Gas – The Facts’, as was reported in the Gazette.

Following a complaint by Michael Roberts, an investigation by the ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) came to an informal resolution with no ruling made against RAFF.

RAFF would like to reinforce that we can substantiate all information in our newsletter, which was gathered from worldwide peer reviewed research.

As our newsletter was a year old it was no longer in use and, due to constantly emerging new evidence highlighting the dangers of shale gas, RAFF has already produced a 2015 newsletter that will be available soon.

Due to rule changes at the ASA that came into effect in September, less than two weeks after Michael Roberts’ complaint, we are now aware that RAFF’s future information resources will no longer fall within the remit of the ASA.

Ebony Johnson

(By email)

Back our bus petition

Free travel campaign

I’m writing to invite all Gazette readers to back the ‘Love the Bus Pass’ petition.

This is a grass-roots campaign supported by local people and groups throughout England, and by the National Pensioners’ Convention.

Strictly non-partisan, it aims to get all parties to pledge in advance of May’s General Election that, if in power, they will retain the England concessionary bus pass for older and blind and disabled people as a statutory universal entitlement free at the point of use.

Following the launch of the campaign, well over 100,000 pen-on-paper signatures were collected in just three months, so a first instalment of 153,247 signatures was delivered to 10 Downing Street on September 10.

A second instalment, to bring the total, with your readers’ help, to over 250,000, will be delivered in March.

To date, no political party has made a clear and unequiviocal commitment to retaining the bus pass in its present form.

I have letters from Baroness Kramer at the Department for Transport, and from the Office of the Leader of the Opposition, both sympathetic, but neither making the clear commitment we seek.

In fact, high-ranking coalition politicians started to call for ‘reform’ as early as 2011, starting with Eric Pickles’ protege, Brandon Lewis (since fast-tracked to ministerial office) who wrote in ‘Conservative Home’ the scheme had never been affordable, albeit this was something his party hadn’t wished to come out with before the 2015 General Election, for fear of ‘alarming’ voters!

Nick Clegg then called for a ban on millionaires joy-riding on buses for free, which would save next to nothing - millionaires making few, if any, bus trips - but a neat way of destroying the principle of universality and introducing means-testing.

We simply must ensure all politicians understand they attack the bus pass at their electoral peril!

Readers may request petition forms and campaign material either by e-mail (richardvworrall@yahoo.com); by phone, giving or leaving name and address (01922-641084); or post (46 Winn House, Walsall, WS2 8NW)

Richard Worrall

Love the Bus Pass Campaign Co-Ordinator

Walsall

Defending cemetery

Well kept

In reply to a letter about Carleton Cemetery (Your Say January 7), I have been going to the cemetery for the last seven year, three or four times a week, as my son and my grandaugher are buried there.

I find it a beautiful cemetery, which is well kept and the staff do a marvelous job.

I have never seen dead flowers strewn around or any other rubbish, as described by your previous correspondent.

I feel I must defend Carleton Cemetery.

Mrs Jacqui Brown

Bennett Avenue

Blackpool