Letters - March 30, 2016

Pictures:Bill Johnson.
Views of the Talbot Gateway development at Blackpool. (from Bus Station Car Park)
Pictures:Bill Johnson. Views of the Talbot Gateway development at Blackpool. (from Bus Station Car Park)
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Have your say

PLANNING

We need to keep the roads clear of buses

I must say I agree with Coun Galley and Stephen Pierre and previous correspondents in The Gazette that the developing Talbot Gateway really should include a bus station (Gazette, March 25).

There is often a chaotic situation in Talbot Road, with buses stopping on both sides of the road between the present Wilkinson’s building and that opposite.

It seems to me that the building opposite Wilkinson’s, which has car parking space on the upper levels, could form an ideal bus station for our town.

The ground level, which appears to be largely unoccupied, has sufficient head height for access by double deck buses and its construction with perimeter support columns and lightweight infill could allow several access openings to be made.

This would enable Talbot Road to be cleared of the obstructing buses and, with a bit of careful management, there should be room for both council-owned buses and Ribble (sorry – Stagecoach) vehicles to terminate there, giving travellers the advantage of a unified town centre site, as found in so many other 
towns.

I wonder why nobody has thought of this before?

Geoffrey Cunliffe

St Anne’s Road East

Lytham St Annes

TRANSPORT

Do we have the cash to extend tram link?

I felt I had to write in support of Stephen Pierre’s recent remarks in The Gazette with regard to the proposed extension to the Blackpool tramway system (Gazette, March 25).

When you remove all the fancy wording and ‘spin’, what it really means is we are going to borrow £7m to run a tram up Talbot Road.

Do the council members really believe this will bring more people to our town? I think not.

Can I also point out that at a time when services are being cut and staff being laid off, this is like me telling my wife to cut back on household expenses, then going out to buy a new car.

Imagine the reaction that would bring! Crazy.

Neal Duffy

via email

TRANSPORT

We don’t have the space for new tram

Speaking as a tram enthusiast for 35 years, I am a supporter of public transport investment, but I think the proposed extension of the tramway will prove a costly wrong turn for the town centre.

Extending tramway infrastructure from scratch costs serious money and causes major disruption to businesses. Combine that with road diversions and increased traffic congestion, is it really worth it for what is, in real terms, a short section of tram track and benefitting who?

The promenade route works well, operating both as a modern light rail system and heritage tour tramway on its own segregated track.

Blackpool does not have the road space infrastructure in this modern age to run inland street tramways in a safe and efficient manner. This is the basic reason as to why Lytham Road, Whitegate Drive, Church Street and Dickson Road tram routes were closed in the early 1960s.

If the funding is available for transport investment, the money would be much better spent developing a modern, purpose-built bus station, similar to the model found in Middleton, Greater Manchester.

Improving the bus network in Blackpool will improve town centre footfall, investment and attract visitors from all over the Fylde coast and beyond.

Blackpool suffers traffic congestion enough as it is, without the loss of Talbot Road. Lessons should be learned from the huge mistake spent on changing the failed promenade layout five years ago.

The academic experts produce theoretical road layout ideas based on computer programmes. This data cannot possibly have the same, accurate, year-round knowledge that can be given as free advice from any Blackpool bus or taxi driver.

Stephen Pierre

via email

EUROPE

It’s time to rethink union with Scotland

I understand the desire for Scottish independence is at a 15- year high. Is this then the time for a new start for us in the UK? Should we bite the bullet, vote to leave the EU, stick a few more bricks on Hadrian’s Wall and see how the world looks?

I doubt if Mrs Sturgeon will ever be satisfied with anything short of full independence.

As I say, I know little of politics, but if we don’t have to pay the huge levy to Europe, and the Scots start to pay the prescription charges, university fees, et cetera, that at the moment I believe we subsidise, will we be worse off?

No doubt some Smart Alec will soon show me the error of my ways. I wish they would, but after chatting to local people, listening to “informed” people, I reckon none of us really know.

I remain, confused!

Allan Fazackerley

via email

SPORT

Equality of pay? Then play longer

Surely, in the age of pay and gender equality in sport, women’s tennis matches should be decided by the best of five sets in Grand Slam tournaments rather than three?

Andrew Mercer

Address supplied