Letters, Monday, July 9th, 2012

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No consultation over path cable

THE Government and The Department of Energy and Climate Change have given their approval to allow Cornwall Light and Power Co Ltd to construct a three-wind-turbine farm, after appeal, at South Sharpley Farm on the outskirts of Murton, their second development to date.

A 33,000-volt cable is to be buried under the railway path, south of Seaton, towards Murton, and South Hetton, terminating at Hawthorn.

The Railway Path is part of the popular Sustrans National Cycle Network, and The North Sea Cycle Route, owned by Durham County Council, which is actively engaged and supporting Cornwall Light and Power Co Ltd to secure cabling rights in the Railway Path.

Residents of Seaton, Murton, and South Hetton have not had the chance of a public consultation so that they can make their representations regarding the Railway Path, and it is probably too late for them to express their views.

As the Railway Path is not a highway tarmac public footpath or road, it easily floods in inclement weather, as the month of June has demonstrated, which I think could pose a risk to users.

It is morally wrong for the Government to mislead the public with a lack of information. There is a distinct air of secrecy from The Department of Energy and Climate Change, Cornwall Light and Power Co Ltd and Durham County Council to ensure that this scheme goes ahead.

Prime Minister David Cameron says he is passionate about the countryside, and that he would no sooner put the British environment at risk that his family, but his words are as empty as the sails of these wind turbines surrounding Murton.

County Durham will be remembered as “The Land of the Wind Turbines,” and not as “The Land of Prince Bishops”.

Keith Wren, Melrose Avenue, Murton

Caring Craig

I AM a Newcastle fan, but I would like to take my hat off to Sunderland player Craig Gardner

for his help to that family with the sick child.

A lot of well-off sportsmen raise money for charity, but he dipped into his own pocket. Good on you, mate!

John “The Pun” Watson, Pensher View, Washington

Making savings

I SEE the council is looking to close the beach office by blaming government cuts, but this council would close the office, which benefits lots of people and keeps the beaches safe and clean.

The council is keeping very quiet on the perks given to the staff inside the civic centre. They waste money on cars for a selected few, £200,000 on union officials and £26,000 on bottled water, all for the privileged few. We have one of the highest number of days off in the country – and on full pay.

If all of these perks were stopped we could have a coastline second to none and maybe a couple of working toilets.

So may I suggest the council starts it savings inside the civic centre first by stopping the perks given to a few and start looking after the whole of the city of sunderland not just those inside the civic centre.

G. Liddle, Roker, Sunderland

Friendly Mackems

I HAVE just returned from holiday in Albufeira in Portugal with friends and would just like to say that the very large group of men from Sunderland made our holiday very memorable.

They were funny, made us laugh and were a pleasure to know – complete gentlemen.

Janet Smith, Grimsby

Blue Badge rules

WHEN are the rules pertaining to the use of the Blue Badge to be enforced throughout the city of Sunderland?

Parking in Derwent Street is a major case in point. Every working day at least three out of every five vehicles are illegally parked when showing a Blue Badge.

It is not sufficient to show the badge, as it must be accompanied by the appropriate disc showing when the vehicle was parked. Parking is for two hours from that time (in extreme circumstances three hours).

Those drivers showing discs come out of shops at two-hour intervals to alter the disc clock.

Traffic wardens seem to walk on the opposite side of the road to the parked vehicles, apparently in order not to notice the vehicles parked illegally.

Holmeside is another perfect example of traffic wardens showing the “Nelson touch” –

“I see no illegally parked vehicles’’.

Leslie Dobson

Great school show

SEABURN Dene Primary School put on a fab show – Narnia: the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.

Well done to all the children who took part. It was a great show. Everybody had worked hard.

J. Graydon

Alternative CBEs

AROUND the country Friends of the Earth (FoE) groups set out “early doors”, their mission to “decorate” carefully chosen iconic heroes and heroines of the realm with the alternative “CBE”.

Not to be outdone, members of Wearside FoE chose some perhaps unlikely heroes, the Men of Steel. Though not commemorating iconic individuals, they are, we believe, equally deserving of the accolade, representing, as the artist who created them said: “Man’s social struggle and will to survive against the odds. The figures show purpose and aims, they symbolize hope and achievement.”

The awards mark a new link-up between (FoE) and the UK’s only specialist green energy providers, Good Energy and Ecotricity, aimed at boosting clean British power.

Members of the public, organisations and businesses are being urged to back the campaign – and show their support for renewable power by switching their energy supply to one of the two suppliers – at the campaign website www.cleanbritishenergy.co.uk/.

Wearside FoE, supported by Sunderland Green Party, are asking local people to “earn” their own CBE by seizing back power from the “Big Six” energy firms and switching to a clean electricity supplier like Good Energy or Ecotricity.

Dale Vince founder of Ecotricity said: “The Big Six energy companies focus on short-term profits at the expense of long-term thinking and what Britain actually needs, which is a massive investment in home- grown sources of energy – clean, green energy made in Britain.

“This campaign is about giving voice to the vast majority of Britons who want our energy companies and our government to take the long-term view and do what’s right for Britain.”

If you would like to know more about this campaign please contact me by email: a.r1@me.com

Allan Rowell, Wearside Friends of the Earth, Sunderland Green Party

City cemeteries

CAN someone from Sunderland City Council please explain to me and countless others, I am sure, who are as baffled as me, why the city’s cemeteries have been left this year to become overgrown and neglected?

I frequently visit some of the cemeteries in the city and I have been appalled by the state of the grass cutting and general maintenance.

Why is it the parks of the city are well maintained and seem to want for nothing, and the cemeteries are neglected? It’s about time the council started to respect our loved ones.

What’s the matter – can the poor souls in the cemetery not case a vote?

Disgruntled (Name and address supplied)

Road priorities?

RE the Echo front-page headline “City roads gone to pot”: no wonder the council is short of cash to repair roads when they have seen fit to construct a roundabout on the narrow Bonemill Lane, Rickleton, to serve a cul-de-sac of not more than 33 houses.

Drivers travelling towards Harraton have to drive into the estate in order to negotiate the bend or, as has been witnessed, drive on the wrong side of the road, making it very dangerous.

While the council have gone to the expense of creating this roundabout, the surrounding road (as in the rest of the area) is in a disgraceful state. As for repairs that have been done, the workmen must be throwing the tarmac into the holes as they drive past.

What sort of local authority would carry out their duties in such a haphazard fashion?

Mr T. Doyle, Washington

Magic night

I JUST want to let readers know what a night we had at the Empire’s showing of Aladdin on Saturday, June 30.

It was magic ... the acting, singing, colourful costumes, from the youngest to the oldest. What a show!

A most enjoyable night.

Mrs H. Dobson, Sunderland

Search Party

I AM looking for Gloria Copeland, who came from the Sunderland area. We both served with 251 Signal Sqn WRAC, stationed at Aldershot 1963-1966.

A number of Gloria’s former friends have formed a group on Facebook and we are meeting up for a reunion in October. It would be lovely if Gloria could come, or we at least had contact with her.

We have a number of photos of those far-off days, some being of Gloria, which I am sure she would love to see.

Doreen Jacques (nee Pinkney), 4 Argyle Terrace, Rothesay, Isle of Bute, Scotland PA20 0BD Tel: 01700 501804

I AM trying to get in touch with Carol Hendry. The last I knew of her, about five years ago, she was living in the Seaham area. I believe she still has family there.

I would be very grateful if Carol or anyone who knows her wheareabouts could get in touch.

Michael Deary, Tel 07980 816616

THANK you for helping me trace Brit Johannson’s friend from Commercial Road School which she attended in the 1950s.

I was able to put them in touch with each other for Brit’s 70th birthday.

Marjorie Grahamslaw, Berwick