Letters, Saturday, November 5th, 2011

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Little idea to help country recover

I’M not too bothered about the recession as I seem to be coping. However, I do feel that the country may need a wee bit help so I sat down with a pint of finest, donned my prime thinking cap and I thought about the situation and I have decided to put forth my two penn’orth.

I look about our fair city and notice that now and again there are chaps driving a machine that sweeps the pavements. Elsewhere I see tiny machines, driven by one man, digging trenches for pipes and even in the cemetery for goodness’ sake, so it got me thinking and here is my grand scheme to help kickstart the economy.

Firstly, sell off those silly little machines to a rich country. The money will then be used to spend in our own country to buy brushes, shovels, barrows, picks and spades. Now we should still have cash left to hire more people to use the aforementioned

paraphernalia and then they will start earning and put more money into the economy.

Secondly, this will have another effect in that employment will become lower and also the environment and the health of people will thrive. As before, I have shown how employment will thrive but where do I get the idea that the environment and health of people will improve?

Well, the environment will improve because those infernal machines aren’t belching out greenhouse gases and the health of people will improve because they are using their own energy to sweep up refuse and/or dig holes, meaning they will become less obese.

I do hope this small proposal of mine comes to fruition because, as they say, “every little helps”.

Alan “the Quill” Vincent, Old Penshaw

Armistice parade

LIKE the rest of the country, we at South Hylton will be holding our Armistice Parade to the Cenotaph for the laying of wreaths and short service on Sunday, November 13.

As we can only get a band for the march, our parade takes place on Sunday afternoon. People taking part assemble at the Tansy Centre at 2pm and the parade will march off at 2.30pm.

The parade is led by the Millfield Salvation Army Band and after a short service we return to the Tansy Centre for refreshments.

It would be nice to have a showing of uniformed personnel eg. ATC, Army Cadets, Sea Cadets or any service personnel.

NB: Our present Poppy Day organiser is Mrs Ann Buckley.

F. Stephenson

Business rates

IT was with great surprise I saw a report in last week’s Echo stating that Julie Elliott MP had arranged a debate on business rate changes. I was also surprised to see that both Julie Elliott and Sharon Hodgson were insisting that Sunderland would lose £60million.

I would like to set the record straight. Sunderland will not lose a penny through the change in business rates. The plan is designed to encourage councils to push for the creation and retention of business. If Julie and Sharon had actually read the proposals (which, let’s remember, is their job), they would know that areas like Sunderland would receive grants to cover any loss through new rates pound for pound. This is stated on Page 2 of the plans.

The plans will mean that any business created by this council will benefit the community, not just in jobs, but in profit for the community due to increased business rates kept locally to spend.

At best our Labour MPs don’t know, understand or haven’t read the proposals and, at worst, they are trying to mislead us.

I would also like to quash the claim of Julie Elliott that she arranged the debate. This is simply not true. The debate had been arranged for a long time by the Minister for Communities.

We are being misled by typical Labour scaremongering.

Dominic McDonough

Bad timing

IN her column, Linda Colling supports the view that the clocks should not be changed. Has she thought this through? It was introduced in the 60s that the clocks would remain unchanged for an experimental period of three years. After two years the idea was abandoned as a failure.

I was then working in the building trade and the hours of work changed from the traditional 8am-4.30pm to 9.15am-5.15pm. Despite losing a half hour’s time the days seemed to drag. Not only that, there was the ordeal of getting to and from work. The normal rush-hour traffic was now augmented by vehicles carrying people who should have been at their workplace an hour before. Chaos ensued and, not surprisingly, the accident rate soared.

It was a great relief when the experiment was scrapped. To rekindle it now with the volume of traffic there is would be madness.

L. Blythyn, South Hetton

Thanks to ladies

MAY I take this opportunity to thank Sunderland Ladies’ Darts and Dominoes League for their kind donation of £2,300 to the Surgical Day Case Unit at Sunderland Royal Hospital.

Once again these ladies have worked relentlessly all year to raise money and, despite demands from other sources, they continue to support us. They are a great bunch of girls and my staff and myself had a great night at the presentation awards and it was a great pleasure to meet you all again.

Thanks also to the Cheers Club for making it such a successful evening. Well done to you all.

Sister Lynne Palmer, Surgical Day Case Unit, Sunderland Royal Hospital