Letters, Friday, January 10, 2014

Have your say

70th anniversary of D-Day landings

BETWEEN Monday, June 2, and Saturday, June 7, I will be leading a group from the North of England to attend events in Normandy to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the D-Day landings and the Normandy campaign in 1944.

 There will be an opportunity to pay respects to a relative at the Commonwealth War Cemeteries and Memorials as well as attending special ceremonies in Caen, Bayeux and the landing beaches.

 We will also visit significant areas associated with the Normandy Campaign.

 En route, we will visit Bletchley Park where the Enigma machine was used to significant effect in the campaign.

 We still have a few places left and convenient local pick up points can be arranged.

 I will be happy to supply details to anyone interested if they contact me at 2 Eden Gate, Warcop, Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria CA16 6PL or ring me on 017683 41060 or 07710 270640.

David Raw,


Such happy days

I WAS pleased to read Doxford Hall is being renovated.

 As a four-year-old in 1936, living at Thistley House Farm and walking to Silksworth with my mother for shopping, on passing Doxford Hall I used to look through the glass front door into a beautiful big conservatory full of tropical plants and palm trees.

 Whether it will come back to that standard remains to be seen.

 Happy days.

M Massingham,


Credit to the NHS

I WOULD just like to say what a marvellous team of staff Michelle and Claire from E52, Sunderland Royal Hospital, have.

 My cousin has spent quite a few weeks in there, and they have all gone above and beyond the call of duty to make his stay a pleasurable one, especially over the festive period.

 Also not forgetting Paula, Jeannette and the staff from G45.

 A credit to the NHS.



A moral dilemma

OVER the years, when I’ve watched American crime dramas, I’ve always thought it was crazy whenever judges sentenced prisoners to 100 years or more in jail.

 Now some Government ministers want us to do the same (Echo, January 3).

 People with strong views on crime and punishment will applaud and shout hooray. As usual, it’s another attempt to defy the European Court of Human Rights. But will Liberal Democrats in the coalition support a measure that will see prison sentences lasting decades?

 Justice cannot simply be punitive. In any just society there has to be an element of redemption.

 The guilty must be encouraged to atone for their crimes.

 If, after many years, they genuinely show repentance and remorse, then they can be given a chance to make a new beginning.

 This is supposed to be a Christian country – remember, Jesus was called the Redeemer.

 It was refreshing to hear a radio interview with the lady whose church organist husband was battered to death by two thugs on Christmas Eve 2012.

 As a practising Christian, she forgave them. They are not evil, she said, though they did an evil thing.

 She still wants justice, of course, and believes the two must do the time the court sentenced them to. But she called her husband’s attackers by their first names and has corresponded with one of them in prison. How different from the hang ‘em, shoot ‘em and flog ‘em brigade.

 It may save £40,000 a year if we give murderers lethal injections, but arguments about capital punishment should be moral ones, with financial considerations playing no part.

Henry Whipple,


Stop giving away cash

WHY doesn’t our Prime Minister get up in the House of Commons and tell the world that we cannot afford to give billions in aid every year to countries that are richer than this country.

 We give over four billion each year to India. Why do we have to give this money every year?

 Also Pakistan is given billions of our hard-earned cash year after year. Africa is another continent where we continually give, give, give.

 We in Britain are having our own fiscal problems, so why can we not say – sorry, we need to sort our own country out first?

Dave Rogers

Thanks for your help

ON Monday, December 30, we were involved in a car accident at junction Castlereagh, Seaham.

 We would like to thank the emergency services and the public for their assistance.

 Special thanks to Mrs Sonia Foster and her husband, also Mr and Mrs Kitson for their help and kindness.

 Thanks again.

Mr and Mrs J Quincey,


Great festive treats

ON behalf of my girlfriend, Yvonne, and myself, I would like to express my thanks to various organisations in South Hylton.

 They are South Hylton Residents’ Association for the excellent three-course Christmas dinner and gift, the Tansy Luncheon Club for a Christmas treat at the Hastings Hill plus gift and the Tansy Centre for putting on the Peterpantastic Pantomime.

 It was a magical night enjoyed by young and old.

 Thank you once again to all the staff who work hard throughout the year.

Mark Rochester & Yvonne Young