Letters, Thursday, August 4th, 2011

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City centre should have a flea market

WHY oh why can’t Sunderland Council place a flea market in Sunderland city centre? Do they realise that Sunderland is the only city in the North East that doesn’t have a flea market?

Before the council say they can’t have a market because of a 12th-century law that stops Sunderland from having a market because it’s shorter than a man can walk with his donkey from South Shields in eight hours, what about the over-priced market Sunderland Council has every four weeks behind Park Lane bus station?

The whole of Sunderland city centre would benefit from a flea market every week. It would bring people into the centre and it would also help the local small shops with more people in the city centre.

So can the council get off their behinds and try to help out the small shops in the city centre?

Last week I telephoned Councillor Alan Emmerson of Ryhope Ward and asked what would I have to do to get a bench situated in the memorial garden on Ryhope Street South next to the old library, for the older generation that have to walk up the pavement to go to the local post office. I had permission to attach it to Ryhope Street Newsagent’s but Coun Emmerson said I couldn’t because it would a be a health and safety issue.

My mind boggles. What does he think the old people are going to do – cartwheels on the bench? Sorry, am I the only person in the Ryhope area that thinks this is a load of rubbish? I was trying to help the older generation of Ryhope. I even talked to the local shops and they all said they would help with the cost.

The memorial garden has just been cleaned up by the community service people and they have done a great job. I honestly thought it would be great for people to sit in the garden.

I have since found out that the memorial garden is owned by the Church Commissioners and I have written to them for permission to place a bench in the garden.

Scott Andrews, Wilkinson Terrace, Ryhope

Airport charge

I AM writing to express my complete disgust at the charge levied by Newcastle airport for dropping off passengers.

We were charged £1 for less than five minutes in the drop-off zone. It is £1 for 20 minutes. How much must they be making?

When being picked up after our recent trip abroad I told my friend to wait near the airport until we came out of the airport and would duly ring him and we would walk to the main road.

He drove to the first main roundabout to meet us and we quickly put our cases in the boot and were driving away in less than a minute. Low and behold, some jobsworth security man in his white van was quick to pick his walkie-talkie up and be driving his van at the same time to radio someone about being stopped on the layby.

I refuse to be charged £1 for the pleasure of being dropped off at the airport door. Also, is using a walkie-talkie the same as a mobile phone? At least Manchester don’t charge for you getting dropped off at the airport.

Ann White, Houghton

Bike menaces

I WONDER if the law for 1861 is still in force.

Road Cops on TV mentioned this law sometime back and fined the person riding his bike on the pavement.

No bicycles were allowed on pavements/footpaths or walkways.

In Vine Place, Sunderland, I still see bicycles being ridden down the pavements and scattering people, plus many times in other parts of Sunderland.

They even ride them over zebra crossings, which brings into question, do cars have to stop for these vehicles (bicycles) as they, the cyclists, are road users?

Ed Keogh, Pendle Close, Lambton, Washington

Family’s thanks

WE, the family of the late Mark Robinson would sincerely like to thank all staff at Northview Lodge who have looked after Mark for the past seven years.

Also all the hospital staff at Sunderland Royal Hospital, especially the staff on D41 Hume Ward for looking after Mark for the last eight weeks of his life.

We would also like to thank all family, friends and neighbours for the many cards received, beautiful floral tributes and, most of all, the kind donations of £390 which was shared equally between the Grace House Appeal and Northview Lodge Nursing Home.

We would also like to thank both the Reverend Olaf Ericsson and Mike Rutter for the lovely service they gave for the celebration of Mark’s life, and funeral directors John G Hogg, especially Claire.

Thanks to you all.

Shirley and Ernie Robinson (parents), Cossack Terrace, Pallion, Sunderland

Library research

THIS October sees the 10th anniversary of Houghton Library.

I would like to appeal to readers for any memories or information on the library service in Houghton.

From information gathered so far, it would appear that originally there was a London Lending Library near the White Lion Inn, Newbottle Street.

A library was then built on the Quayside (opposite Church Street). It was later sited temporarily in Myer Hall, at the top of Church Street, before premises were built in Mautland Square now housed in the present building.

I am also intending to explore how the library services evolved originally, so I would welcome any information for Houghton and District Local History Group to use for the September Heritage Weekend and October Houghton Feast display in the Library and Customer Services Centre.

Readers may contact me on 0191 584 1943 (1571 facility for messages).

With kind regards and thanks.

Brenda Graham, Oak Avenue, Houghton

Fun day helpers

I WOULD like to add a little to comment on the fun day held at Thompson Park on Wednesday, July 27.

The ladies of Thompson Park Bowling Club were asked if they could provide food, refreshments etc for the day, which they did.

Thanks to the ladies who helped me on the day: Margaret Blakey, who was up early to make pies and then helped me make assorted sandwiches, and Margaret Robinson and Doreen Kerrigan, who came up to help make teas and coffees.

Mrs F. Rodenby, Secretary, TPLBC, Stranton Terrace, Sunderland

Happy ending

THANK you to Katy Wheeler who gave a whole page to the story “Give a dog a home”.

Because of this article I went along to the Cleadon Kennels and adopted the greyhound whose picture was in the Echo. This is a happy ending for Groover the greyhound. However, research on this dog showed he is only two years old and was left on the Metro line. If I hadn’t seen your story I wouldn’t have gone to the kennels.

I would advise anyone who has the need for a friend to go along to the kennels and see what is there.

You never know, you may fall in love again.

Dogs Trust in Darlington also has greyhounds and the race track itself also has owners who will offload a greyhound they do not need anymore.

Joyce Williamson

Wonderful show

ON Saturday, July 23, I went to the Sunderland Empire to see Beauty and the Beast.

I really enjoyed the show. In fact it was wonderful to see. It was fast moving and very entertaining.

Thanks go to Fiona and Mark Clegg.

All the cast were very good, from the singing and dancing and the acting was word perfect. They must have all put months in learning all the lines. Also the scenery was lovely.

So thank you, everyone, for giving me a good night’s entertainment.

L. Barber, Portsmouth Square, Sunderland