Letters, Saturday, February 19th, 2011

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Asda to the rescue for charity event

LATELY, a lot of people have organised various events in aid of our troops fighting in Afghanistan, who are rightly recognised as heroes.

We, the committee that represents the people of Lakeside, decided to do the same type of social event for such a good cause.

The first thing that was done was to approach the manager of a well-known supermarket in November 2010. We asked if they could donate a small hamper (groceries) to raffle. I was told to put it in writing, telling the date of the event and the venue.

The hamper request was agreed by the manager. The date of the event was February 4, 2011.

On February 2, we approached the supermarket to be told the manager was not available that day. That night I was phoned and told we could pick up our donation the next morning, February 3.

Next day, can you imagine our disappointment as we were given a bottle of pink bubbly? We had been selling raffle tickets for a hamper and I felt really let down.

In desperation we decided to visit Asda supermarket at Grangetown. We spoke to the lady on the customer service desk and explained our situation. She phoned the manager, Mr McKenna, whose response to our request was unbelievable. Knowing what it was for he immediately told the lady to offer on behalf of Asda a voucher towards our cause. This was fantastic and way beyond what we had hoped for.

So, to Mr McKenna and indeed all his staff, a massive thank-you for saving our day.

One final thing: we would like it to be known that all future purchases for the residents’ association will be made at Asda.

The social event was for Help For Heroes.

H. Emery, Lakeside Tenants’ and Residents’ Association

Modern problem

THERE’S been a lot on TV and radio about the problems suffered by ex-soldiers who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. We even have people in Washington Galleries collecting for homeless heroes.

It reminds me of the 1980s when we were told the prisons were full of former squaddies who’d suffered psychological trauma after serving in Northern Ireland and then committed crimes.

My late father was demobbed along with his Army pals in 1945. He’d fought all the way from Normandy to West Germany, and returned to a useful life in civvy street. He married, settled down, raised a family and kept a job for 40 years. I don’t remember him having psychological problems that forced him to commit serious crimes.

There were no ex-servicemen sleeping in shop doorways when I was a boy. So what’s going on now?

H. Wipple, Coach Road Estate, Washington

Saving money

GEORGE Osborne wants ideas for his March budget. First, of course, we need a referendum on whether or not to stay in the EU. Coming out would save us £14billion per year.

Stop sending money overseas to corrupt governments like Somalia. The plan is to increase the amount from £26million to £80million to Somalia in 2013-2014. There is plenty of time to cancel that.

Stop the prison holiday camps. No gyms, running area, yoga – exercises instead. Out of the EU and then we could deport terrorists, illegals, criminals and even Hamza, who is costing us £1million or so.

Stop the bogus colleges, police our borders, stop false passport scams, do away with Sharia Law offices. Do we not have UK laws? Could we have our laws in their countries?

We need fewer MPs, as has been admitted. They are complaining because their excessive expenses are being investigated. Councils are mini-govenments now with their jollies and expenses. Now they complain because we want to cut their allowances. Some get salaries above the rate of our PM.

There is a planned “jolly” for MEPs to go to Montevideo in Uruguay in May. This will cost about £1.2million. There is time to stop that.

There is a lot of money waste in the NHS. We have too many pen-pusher managers who do not even check the work going on in hospitals.

There is much, much more, but that is all for now.

Marjorie Matthews, Aiskell Street, Sunderland

Electoral chance

MANY Liberal Democrat councillors may have no faith in Eric Pickles and the Tory-led Government and by submitting a letter showed their disapproval.

However, the Liberal Democrat MPs joined the Tories in voting for unfair local government settlements.

As a result, Sure Start centres, libraries, bin collections and many more of our services could be under threat of massive cutbacks or even closure because of the ridiculous amounts of cuts in the first year rather than spreading them more evenly over four years.

In the Sandhill Ward, the cuts could affect Sure Start, job linkage within Gates in Grindon and services in Thorney Cose Action and Enterprise Centre.

The local elections in May will give all the electorate the opportunity to voice our disapproval and take a stand against the Lib-Dems and their Tory masters and make Labour stronger to fight these savage cuts.

John Gallagher, Chairman, Sandhill Labour Ward