Letters, Thursday, August 30th, 2012

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Not hot air to say we’re overcrowding

So we are to build houses on the nation’s green belt and children’s playing fields. What a good idea.

Take care not to interfere with the other great folly, wind farms. Granted they do not generate much electricity, but at £70,000 per year rent a windmill is a great little earner for the landowner.

Don’t forget that haste is of the essence because we must house another 280,000 new arrivals next year and there is a shortage of state-owned £1million rent-free Mayfair mansions. No doubt our good friends in Brussels will waive the red tape in order to facilitate the speedy demise of our once green and pleasant land.

Already there are 663 people to every square mile of the UK, which represents a denser population than Pakistan or Monaco.

Australia’s population density is eight people per square mile and as a matter of interest, anyone walks into UK, but the Aussies will not let you darken their threshold unless you satisfy a very wide-ranging set of criteria.

We are told that building on what remains of the green belt is good for economic growth. Growth, it seems, is the magic word. Do more, spend more, build more.

Unless I have been dreaming for the past 10 years, do more, borrow more, spend more, build more and above all welcome more visitors, has overburdened and choked the life out of this country.

Only the resilience, ingenuity and natural resourcefulness of the man in the street has prevented us from following Greece.

Of course, we must manufacture and sell more, but while the ridiculously-liberal attitude towards the porosity of our borders exists, we are all destined for the dole queue.

It is obvious that if Brits are paid to stay at home, visitors who work for less will take jobs, which may create a synthetic unsustainable growth for a period, but what happens next?

The green belt will be gone and our Mo Farahs will be doing computer studies on the top floor of the affordable tenements built on the old playing fields?

We will have simply depleted natural resources for a very questionable short-term gain.

We must quit the corrupt and incompetent EU before we suffer the plight of the euro and Greece.

We should issue work visas only when the position cannot be filled by a British national and when it will have a direct and immediate benefit to the UK economy.

Denis Gillon, Sunderland

Thank you Norman

I hope all old pupils of Bishopwearmouth School (Rectory Park), saw the article in the Echo on Wednesday, August 8. That’s the first time I’ve ever seen photos of my old school, either in the Echo or any of the books I’ve bought about Sunderland.

I mentioned this in a letter to Norman Kirtlan of the Antiquarian Society while ordering his book called “Murderous Wearside”, a wonderful and fascinating read.

Imagine my surprise to see two pages, including three photos of the school. The first photo was taken in the girls’ yard, second in the small garden in front of the infants school and third photo of the school was taken in the boys’ yard. Such memories. I was thrilled.

He also sent me a copy of Bishopweamouth’s Centenary Book. I received one from the school at the age of 10 and somehow lost it.

I’ve wanted a replacement copy for years and now I have one thanks to Norman Kirtlan.

Thanks for your time and kindness, from a grateful old pupil of Bishopwearmouth Church School 1949-59.

Olywne Lawson (nee Place), Carlisle Crescent, Penshaw

50 shades of love

ON August 23, the Echo printed an article about the 50 Shades trilogy, stating it was disgusting and needed burning. Wearside Women In Need said: “It normalises abuses against women”. I strongly disagree.

The book is a love story of a man who suffered abuse and neglect as a child which resulted in him finding comfort in the red room of pain.

That sort of stuff has been around for centuries. If you read the books they tell you he changes as he falls in love with Ana. She makes him see he can be loved and doesn’t need all the over-the-top objects.

I’ve read the books twice and loved them. I can’t wait for the film to come out. If people don’t like the book, then don’t read it. Stop spoiling it for everyone else.

S. Cessford, Hendon

Staging a protest

I FIND the name Stagecoach rather apt for a company that regularly holds up its passengers and makes them pay a bomb for its services. If only we had a stash of gold to spare!

My wife and I are sick to death with the price rises on the buses while the routes continue to get worse. Now these companies are staging a protest against what they see as unfair plunder of their profits. I think it is time for a showdown.

W. Turton, Market Place, Houghton