Letters - Tuesday, July 27, 2021
Enjoy a holiday in Northern Ireland
My wife and I have just spent a few days holidaying in Northern Ireland
We were aware of the political problems and issues with trade between Northern Ireland and this country and with the Irish Republic.
But how impressed we were.
The people there were genuinely friendly towards us in the cafes and restaurants, and on the streets where people said “hello” and “good morning” as we passed them on our walks.
We had our own car with us and this enabled us to explore the coast and countryside which we found stunningly attractive.
Our bus tour of Belfast was both excellent and informative.
Our humorous guide, who was also our bus driver, gave us a history lesson on the past Irish troubles.
This he did as our tour took us through the still strongly Catholic and Protestant areas such as the Falls and Shankill Roads.
It was only then that we realised how remote we’d been from all the troubles.
So, if the Balearics and Canaries are out of the question, may I recommend a holiday in Northern Ireland?
You will not feel that you’d had to settle for ‘second best’.
Sajid Javid should not apologise
So the Health Secretary has felt it necessary to apologise for saying we should not be cowed by the coronavirus. Sajid Javid’s critics were in the main the usual suspects on the political left.
They spend it seems their lives waiting to attack anything and everything done by the government or its members.
If calmly viewed in context it is clear that he had nothing to apologise for.
He was simply saying that we should not be over fearful or intimidated or bullied into submission by the virus. There is nothing remotely insensitive in this. He has personally experienced tragedy as a result of the pandemic.
He should not have apologised.
His critics will no doubt include those who scream for free speech: what hypocrites.
It might be of interest to his critics to know that during the far more terrible times of 1940-45 Winston Churchill told Roosevelt in 1942 that the British ‘would never be cowed ‘.
He certainly never apologised to anyone.
Dr Barry Clayton
Three per cent NHS pay rise not insult
Speaking as a nurse who has worked on the Covid frontline, I don’t feel that the 3 per cent payrise is an insult (Your Say, July 24) and I will not be rejecting it.
Having friends who have small businesses or who have nearly lost their livelihoods during the pandemic, I feel grateful to receive a pay rise and have a secure job through the pandemic.
The government does know our worth and has supported the NHS solidly throughout the pandemic along with the support given to businesses and workers and we NHS are paid properly now. Sadly Labour activists are yet again treating the NHS as a political football.
That is the real insult.
Devise a scheme to keep just one bank
On rural bank closures, may I suggest that the Government calls in all the banks and building societies and “bang their heads together”.
In other words, devise a scheme where one bank or building society agrees to open and maintain a branch in any given location and supported by all the others who are not physically present on the ground.
I believe this was considered previously and rejected on commercial grounds, but it cannot be beyond the wit of ministers to devise a scheme with perhaps financial or taxation incentives for those involved, thus making the scheme commercially attractive.
Only then might the Government be seen to be doing its job in looking after its people, especially those in rural areas, and guaranteeing them the essential access to cash and banking services.
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