Letters, Monday, July 4th, 2011

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Coalition’s policies deserve criticism

M. BROWN (Letters, June 23) says I am a Coalition basher. If the Green Party were in power, I would be just as demonstrative towards them, and especially if it was the Labour Party if they made the population suffer with the policies of blame for the condition of the country, whether it be monetary or civil problems.

Yes, there are millionaires and wealthy politicians in the Labour Party and, yes, mistakes are made, some of them big ones, but at least they would not be as callous towards the very vulnerable and those that are not able to defend themselves.

The Coalition would rather bring in new laws to bring any opposition to heel. They want to throw the stones but don’t like the idea of getting anything back.

As for the country being overcrowded, this was predicted by a politician many years ago. His name was Enoch Powell. He saw the future if the doors were wide open to immigration. He was straight away branded a racist instead of a man seeing the future problems.

Whether you live in a bought house or a rented house, no politician should tell you how many children you should have. Mr Cameron stressed council tenants ought to have constraint as regards family life. Council tenants or any rented-house occupants are not second-class citizens. This is only one proof as to Mr Cameron’s attitude to his class roots.

Another point is, if a family live in a council house for say 50 years, how many times has that house been paid for? This ought to help a building programme for more houses to be built, so less homelessness. Why is this not the case?

So, Mr or Mrs Brown, everyone has their own thoughts and thank god we have the freedom to express ourselves. If you agree with the principles of the Coalition, that is your prerogative. If you are satisfied to be targeted as the reason for our troubles and are in favour of targeting the elderly and vulnerable, the sick and family life on the whole, once again it’s your prerogative and no hard feelings. God bless.

Colin Wasey, Wayman Street, Monkwearmouth, Sunderland

Housing problem

I HAVE faced many hard things in my life, but now I have come up to the hardest.

I am in an awful predicament. So many people trying to find work. At 69, four years past the old retirement age, I am trying to stop work. Unfortunately, the house I live in goes with the job. To retire I need somewhere to live, so I thought of a council-type house to end my days. It would be easier to ask for a seat on the next capsule to Mars.

I have two sons with lovely daughters living in the Washington area, some 20 miles from my present location. I have tried for accommodation close to them.

I lived in Washington 17 years ago when unemployed with three sons after a divorce. Returning seems impossible. Several weeks of applications and trying to convince Gentoo of my good status have proved in vain. I have been told I am wasting my time.

Now I must assess my pensions and savings and look towards Housing Associations. They appear to be my only hope. Now I must suffer my job for several more months, it seems, unless I get very lucky.

Health is slowly affecting my job and I feel I am unable to work to my past skill and efficiency. To get higher up the list one must lie and cheat about one’s health and predicament.

J. A. Stott, Wear View, Hunwick

Street neglected

I READ with interest the article in the Echo on June 28 regarding people been fined for littering and the platitudes made by Les Clark, head of street scene, about littering having an impact on the quality of life in our communities.

If Mr Clark is really serious about litter, people and their communities, then why does he allow the council’s own employees, namely the refuse collectors, to drop and leave rubbish lying around the cul-de-sac in which I live, after emptying the bins every Monday morning? And unless a local resident removes this rubbish, it is simply left.

Why do we never have our pavements or guttering cleaned on a regular basis? This is only carried out if you email their department asking for it to be done. Why are weeds allowed to grow through our pavements and never treated?

I invite Mr Clark to leave his office and visit the area in which I live, and for him to witness for himself the lack of pride and professionalism his department fobs off on to the residents of Rodney Close in Ryhope.

Dave Binsley, Rodney Close, Ryhope

Thanks for help

ON Monday, June 20, I collapsed outside Pennywell shops, and I would just like to say a big thank-you to everyone who came to help me.

Mrs Janice Young, Pennywell

Gig was disgrace

I RECENTLY had the opportunity to see the Kings of Leon on two occasions. However, they couldn’t have been more contrasting.

The second concert was at Murrayfield. The crowds were well controlled, as was the sale of alcohol, and me and my friend left the stadium buzzing after a superb show.

Contrast that with the first show at the Stadium of Light. The stewarding of the crowd was virtually non-existent, alcohol was freely available via vendors in the stadium to anybody that wanted it, hence there being a large number of young people drunk and some being sick.

The major problem I saw was that beer was sold in plastic bottles, and once they had been emptied, people then either launched them empty across the crowd, or used them to go to the toilet in, and then launched them across the crowd.

At times it was so bad that we had to duck down as there were bottles flying in all directions.

My friend got hit in the face with a bottle, which caused her pain and bruising, and then when she went to the toilet she had a pint of urine poured over her head by some drunken cretin.

I am just glad that I didn’t find the person that did it on the night.

On the whole, the concert at the Stadium of Light was a disgrace, and I for one will not be attanding any more events there.

Phillip Bennett

Pills I Have Known

THEY asked me at the hospital what tablets I was on.

I took a deep breath and answered, at the last count, and if my memory is all right:

Lithium, Thyroxine, Phenelzine, Paracetamol, Detrucital.

The last one is a new one and it’s just been introduced

To all the other tablets, to help to give a boost.

I wonder if I miss one, what will happen then?

Will I throw a wobbler, or turn depressed again?

If I take an extra one, is there an antidote?

For I feel like something alien is going down my throat.

I feel as if I rattle but I have to get them down.

I swallow them three times a day

With a swig of Newcastle Brown.

They work well with each other,

None of them ever fight,

They’re my friends, they keep me going, Though my head is not quite right!

M. Taylor, Croft Care Home, Ettrick Grove, Sunderland

Bare-faced idea

CAN anybody in this city answer a simple question: Why is no money being spent developing Seaburn? No one anywhere can seem to give me a straight answer.

In the past we had a zoo, crazy golf, a fairground and even donkey rides. Where did it all go wrong? Quite frankly, at present it is a desolate wilderness, quite naff to be honest.

The last time I passed on a hot day the seats were packed, but it was pensioners sitting around like Capo Di Monte figures slurping on ice cream.

There does not seem much for anyone to do at Seaburn anymore.Yes, there was talk of casinos being built and we were going to rival Blackpool with our illuminations, but there is no sign of any developments yet the potential is immense, but in comparison to our neighbours at South Shields we are a joke. Even smaller places like Seaham and Seaton Carew have more to entice visitors.

One idea of mine would be to section off an area of the beach and turn it into a nudist beach. This would encourage naturists from all over to come and visit and would be a first for the North East. The thought of naked beach volleyball to many could be very exhilarating.

The pessimist would argue that we don’t have the weather. However, there are many warm days in Sunderland, certainly warm enough to take your kit off for a game of five-a-side. Naked soccer is very popular in parts of Brazil.

These sites are very popular in Croatia and the South of France. In fact there is one in Brighton called Black Rock beach that opened in 1980. There maybe a few problems along the way, but once the initial excitement has died down I believe the thing would take off.

You have to move with the times – and has anyone else got any better ideas that can be done on the cheap because it’s quite obvious to me and many others that until there is a multimillion-pound investment Seaburn will remain in the last century.

Personally I think that this could be a very good business opportunity. It would certainly put us on the map.

Have the authorities no vision or ambition? I would challenge anyone to come up with a better and more cost-effective idea.

Mick “The Pen” Brown