Letters - January 29, 2019

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Don’t make prison easy for criminals

The latest prison pipedream is to have homely cells without bars in the belief it will make prisoners desist from causing trouble.

All this will do is facilitate a cosy ambience conducive to illegal drug consumption which is already out of control.

The theory that this latest initiative will make some inmates appreciative will simply fail like previous charm offences.

What hasn’t changed over the years is the nature of criminals who see goodwill, not as something to be reciprocated, but a weakness to be exploited.

Their culture is selfishness, not selflessness, where the essence is to take, not partake.

But this insight is lost on the progressive reformers who monopolise the running of Her Majesty’s Prisons.

Who will be brave and return the Prison Service to a disciplined regime with prisoner deference towards staff, not a Hi-De-Hi culture of equality and human rights? Let us not forget that the prisoners broke the law, that’s why they were sent to prison in the first place.

Prison is a deterrent, 
why should we give prisoners an easy life?

Scott Andrews

Address supplied


MP’s tramway 
plan ‘laughable’

I find Paul Maynard’s tramway extension proposals laughable. As a former rail minister he would (or should) know that projects like this require huge amounts of funding, preparation and cooperation from all affected parties. Also converting existing heavy rail routes to tramways is a retrograde step; removing communities on the converted routes from the national rail network.

So why did he pluck this scheme out of the ether without any funding, concrete plans, or consultation?

It is clearly a kite flying exercise to distract from how abysmal our existing train service has become on his government’s watch. His constituency now suffers one of the most unreliable train services in the country thanks to the rolling disaster that is the Arriva Northern Rail franchise and badly planned electrification work by Network Rail. The later organisation had half a year of a total route shutdown and four years of regular weekend shutdowns prior to this to get it right yet STILL needed another seven Sunday shutdowns since the beginning of January.

Even worse is the performance of Northern which had a service meltdown soon after the line reopened, from which it still hasn’t fully recovered. Finally there is the lunatic plan to get rid of train guards (backed by his government) that has provoked a long-running strike which has deprived the North of proper train services every Saturday since mid-summer.

It is clear Mr Maynard and the Tories have no intention of doing anything real to improve our failing privatised railways.

Only the election of Labour, which is committed to renationalisation, will see real change for the better.

James Sorah



We’ve already had a people’s vote!

A people’s vote is the only solution, according to correspondent Anthony Gledhill (Your Say, January 22). Rubbish!

We’ve already had a people’s vote, it was called the referendum – a democratic vote which should have been respected by EVERYBODY as we do following a general election. As for writing to my MP – I have already done so telling him that should there be a second referendum I shall never vote for him – his party or ever again.

Joan Adams

Devonshire Road


Loss of habitat
not just in rainforest

I mourn the loss of my hedgehog, who lived peacefully in the garden for three or four years.

His shelter now gone, along with the homes of generations of sparrows who lived amongst the old ivy, covering a rickety fence.

This also protected many living plants, creatures and insects from the wind.

Gone too, hacked down with an axe, the little tree and home of the wren.

Every living proof of nature - birds, bees, butterflies, frogs, trees and bushes - are all gone for concrete, for cars, yachts and garages.

It’s not just the rainforests - it’s here, now, next to you and me.

Pauline Smithson

Address supplied