Letters - February 23, 2016

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Have your say


A ban would work better than fining

I read with interest two letters from readers regarding the use of mobiles while driving which can result in accidents.

Fining culprits brings it’s own problems, such as collection. Very few can pay the fine in full,or in instalments by direct debit. A good majority offer to pay £5 to £25 per week.

If a payment is missed, the Collection Office has to chase the offender. If the matter is referred to the courts, magistrates more often than not, reduce the fine substantially in order that the defendant is able to pay. Your reader suggested a fine increase to £1,000 but at say, £5 per week, this would take 200 weeks to collect !

I suggest a driving ban of three months would stop this problem overnight. Of course, a handful would still take the risk, but only the most stupid would use their mobile as well.

Concerned motorist and cyclist

via email


Elderly drivers are also a road danger

I totally agree with Brian Kelk, (Your Say, Gazette, February 20), the fine for using a mobile while driving should be £1,000.

I also think Jayne Dawson missed her chance in her wrinkly-bashing column in the same edition to have a go at aging drivers. It’s barely a week since we heard on the news about a group of schoolgirls being mowed down by a driver in her 80s. They want drivers to be tested every three years after reaching the age of 70 – personally I would recommend every THREE MONTHS.

Malcolm Boyce

via email


Thanks to Peter for all his fund-raising

May I, through your column, thank Peter and his staff at Harrold Rigbys Fish and Chip restaurant on Waterloo Road for hosting a fund-raising evening for the local Blackpool and North Lancs branch of the RSPCA.

This is an annual event and not only does Peter serve arguably the finest fish and chips in Blackpool, but he also provides entertainment in the form of a quiz.

The funds are desperately needed to complete the final stages of our purpose-built animal centre in Stalmine. To date, we can accommodate 25 dogs, a mum and her puppies in the nursery, up to 80 cats and kittens, all manner of small “furries” and various birds in an aviary. We are currently raising funds to complete a second dog kennel block and a unit for rabbits.

Most of our animals have been rescued by the Inspectors from the most appalling, and often cruel, conditions and they so deserve a second chance in life.

Thanks to Peter and his staff for their unstinting support in helping us to make our dreams a reality.

If you would like to donate to our charity you can find our details on our web page and we are grateful for all donations, however small.

Ann M Turner

Honorary Branch Secretary


Read between the lines on EU debate

So our Prime Minister has done his deal in Brussels and what has the public got out of it? Absolutely nothing. Benefits to immigrants are insignificant compared with other, more pressing, issues such as border controls, self-governance, sovereignty, freedom of movement.

Let us see what we will be voting for:

STAYING IN EUROPE –Unlimited immigrants will be allowed into the UK. Freedom of movement means anyone will be allowed into the UK and we will not be able to deport them unless approved by Brussels. The Queen will have no authority over her subjects. Our Judges will be under the control of Brussels law makers. The European Commission will continue issuing ‘directives’ ordering our House of Commons to comply with their ruling.It costs us £400 million per week and this will continue to rise over the years.

PULLING OUT OF EUROPE – We will have our freedom to control our own lives and establish a British Bill of Rights. Our borders will be restricted only allowing in those authorized. Criminals will not be allowed in. Our judges will be independent from Brussels. We will be independent and self-governing. The £400 million a week we pay to Brussels will be spent on ourselves. Our Councils will be better funded to cover vital services. We will control our own future.

Between now and June 23 the public will be subjected to a bewildering array of arguments, but I hope people will be able to read between the lines and not be hoodwinked by misinformation.

Derek J Bunting

Birkdale Avenue



We are better if 
we stick together

Will we have stronger security, greater prosperity, and enhanced opportunities if we vote to pull out of the European Union?

Russia’s president Putin will rub his hands with glee if the EU is weakened, and I don’t see that improving our security. The EU single market is important to our prosperity and if we vote to leave we will lose the right to shape the decisions that control it. Leaving the EU can only diminish opportunities for our young people in the future.

The 28 countries in the EU face problems none of us know with certainty how to resolve, but together we champion the values of freedom and democracy. The EU is far from perfect and always will be, but nowhere in the world is there anything better.

Chris Davies

North West Liberal Democrats