Letters - January 13, 2016

Clean It Up stencil painted on the streets of Morpeth'Picture by Jane Coltman
Clean It Up stencil painted on the streets of Morpeth'Picture by Jane Coltman
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Disgusted by mess on the streets

I have just paid a visit to Blackpool. I have not been for a few years, so I spied my chance when Port Vale FC were playing there on January 9 2.

I was with my son and grandson, and we said that when we got there we would have a walk on the fronts. That walk turned out to be a hop, step and a jump, because of all the dog excrement on the fronts.

We were constantly walking looking for it and it spoilt the walk.

Do you have wardens going around fining dirty owners that do not pick it up? I cannot remember seeing any signage warning owners to pick it up, and this was in the Manchester Square area.

Please Blackpool dog owners, pick it up.

John Cartwright

Eaton Park



Wonky veg could help end this waste

Jayne Dawson’s article on wonky veg and so called false body perfections (Saturday Slant, Gazette, January 9) puts into perspective the need to get back to what is actually normal in our lives.

Supermarket chains are to blame for presuming perfect fruit and veg is what customers want, yet in the first place, if shelves had been stacked with natural produce of all shapes and sizes as they were harvested, we would have continued to accept them as they are supposed to be.

The food waste in this country is appalling, from ‘best before’ and ‘use by’ dates people take literally when they are only guidelines. Our common sense knows when a food item is a bit ‘iffy’ to be edible.

Food hygiene regulations have gone overboard, with food standards having many believe that if something has gone beyond the date on the package, then it’s not fit to be consumed, when there is nothing wrong with it.

I know someone who will not use bread from a loaf they opened the day before, or milk opened the previous day. When so many are starving, it makes you realise just how irresponsible this is.

Let’s hope that if customers do accept wonky veg, realising it is natural, supermarket chains don’t then decide that customers don’t want perfect produce and start throwing that away instead, otherwise we’re back to square one and wastage just the same as now.

There is already a campaign to put a stop to the tons of food wasted by supermarkets, and we should be supporting this 100 per cent.

Clifford Chambers

Ashton Road



Boy George is one 
of the Diddymen

I must admit that I have never seen one episode of The Voice, and the only thing I know about it is they dispensed with the services of Tom Jones.

So the other night I saw an ad for the new series, introducing Jones’ replacement, Boy George.

I shudderingly recalled him from years ago, but the vision that appeared wearing an oversize hat? I don’t recall him looking like that, but I was sure I had seen him wearing that hat before.

Got it! Saw him with Ken Dodd. Mick the Marmaliser. No doubt at all!

Allan Fazackerley

via email


Could fracking make the floods worse?

In light of the December floods in northern England, I wonder what implications this has for the fracking industry.

The safe disposal of gallons of contaminated water, by-product of the fracking process, must surely be further cause for concern regarding the safety of communities living near fracking rigs. In a worst case scenario of contaminated water escaping – potentially polluting river and countryside – an apology and compensation for clean-up would be cold comfort for communities left devastated.

A basic of human life in a civilised society is access to clean water and this shouldn’t be put at risk. People’s welfare should be put before profits.

C Noah



Get fit and help raise cash for children

For many across Lancashire, getting in shape will have been top of the New Year’s Resolution list.

However, all too often our good intentions crumble as January wears on and we’re faced with busy schedules, pricey gym memberships or our own unrealistic goals and we end up back on the sofa.

As a fitness trainer, I know that getting fit doesn’t need to be expensive, time consuming or scary.

The Children’s Society’s new 30-day sponsored fitness challenge, Tough n Buff, is the perfect way to ease into a new fitness regime for 2016, with a menu of basic exercises for any level of fitness, all of which can be done in the comfort of your own home.

It’s a cause that’s close to my heart because, like so many young people the charity helps, my childhood was blighted by poverty and neglect.

We need as many people as possible to take on the challenge and convert pounds lost into pounds raised for the UK’s most vulnerable children. So go on, get up off that sofa!

Find out more and sign up at toughnbuff.com

Sarah Maxwell

Fitness trainer