Cemetery staff do a marvellous job
In reply to a letter about Carleton Cemetery (Your Say January 7), I have been going to the cemetery for the last seven years, three or four times a week, as my son and my grandaugher are buried there.
I find it a beautiful cemetery, which is well kept and the staff do a marvelous job.
I have never seen dead flowers strewn around or any other rubbish, as described by your previous correspondent.
I feel I must defend Carleton Cemetery.
Back our bus petition
Free travel campaign
I’m writing to invite all Gazette readers to back the ‘Love the Bus Pass’ petition.
This is a grass-roots campaign supported by local people and groups throughout England, and by the National Pensioners’ Convention.
Strictly non-partisan, it aims to get all parties to pledge in advance of May’s General Election that, if in power, they will retain the England concessionary bus pass for older and blind and disabled people as a statutory universal entitlement free at the point of use.
Following the launch of the campaign, more than 100,000 pen-on-paper signatures were collected in just three months, so a first instalment of 153,247 signatures was delivered to 10 Downing Street on September 10.
A second instalment, to bring the total, with your readers’ help, to more than 250,000, will be delivered.
To date, no political party has made a clear and unequiviocal commitment to retaining the bus pass in its present form.
I have letters from Baroness Kramer at the Department for Transport, and from the Office of the Leader of the Opposition, both sympathetic, but neither making the clear commitment we seek.
In fact, high-ranking coalition politicians started to call for ‘reform’ as early as 2011, starting with Eric Pickles’ protege, Brandon Lewis (since fast-tracked to ministerial office) who wrote in ‘Conservative Home’ the scheme had never been affordable, albeit this was something his party hadn’t wished to come out with before the 2015 General Election, for fear of ‘alarming’ voters!
Nick Clegg then called for a ban on millionaires joy-riding on buses for free, which would save next to nothing – millionaires making few, if any, bus trips - but a neat way of destroying the principle of universality and introducing means-testing.
We simply must ensure all politicians understand they attack the bus pass at their electoral peril!
Readers may request petition forms and campaign material either by e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org); by phone, giving or leaving name and address (01922-641084); or post (46 Winn House, Walsall, WS2 8NW)
Love the Bus Pass Campaign Co-Ordinator
Paul Berentzen’s article about staff shortage fears at Blackpool Victoria Hospital (Gazette, January 6) is frightening.
Staff are treated so badly, with this Government’s outrageous decision to refuse a measly one per cent rise that was recommended by an independent body. The effects of this Government’s Health and Social care Act have become all too apparent over the past year, with the worst still to come.
This Government is the immediate enemy to the NHS as a public service. Labour’s extra £2.5bn for the NHS is only a modest increase, with Miliband recently defending PFI as the right thing to do! Which is shameful.
The real worry has been that Lansley’s Bill was voted on by hundreds of parliamentarians with connections to private health care companies, the Tory strategy being to feather their friends’ nests rather than providing decent health care for us all.
We all value the NHS so much, and have to reinstate it as a public service, not a vehicle for profit seeking private corporations.
With 2015 being a crucial year in which our NHS could be lost for ever, it is time to question all politicians as they start knocking on our doors.
Resort on sea-bed ridge
The North West Energy Task Force describes protests as scaremongering against fracking (Your Say, January 7).
But accurately predicting the future is foolish.
An untried new experiment could see side-boring under houses. Are they just looking for trouble?
Never mind the noise, the dirt and air pollution, forget about the drinking water and forget being the number one holiday resort in the UK!
Our resort is right on a huge sea-bed ridge. Any earth disturbance in this area could be dangerous. But of course, greedy business men see things differently. In other countries, they have stopped drilling. Who knows why?
Mr C.Victor De-Nagy