Letters, Monday, May 20, 2013

Have your say

Marathon made for a great day

I AM writing to express my support of the Marathon of the North.

 I competed in the marathon and had the most fantastic day.

 As a runner who has now competed in 13 marathons; including London, small UK marathons and other large European marathons, I have enjoyed every single one. The Marathon of the North has the spectator support to match any large city, with the friendly atmosphere of a small town.

 I moved to Sunderland 12 years ago and, a year later, joined a running club as a novice runner. I have never looked back in terms of wanting to live anywhere else or continuing my running. I feel welcomed as if this were my hometown and have developed an amazing group of friends.

 Of course, I was very disappointed to hear that on the day, aside from the leading runner, there was a diversion from the planned route, which meant that the course was 264m short. This essentially means that the times people recorded can’t be counted as an official UK marathon and that personal bests and qualifying times for other events therefore are not validated.

 Despite my disappointment, I have huge respect for the organisers for investigating this fully and contacting all the runners to express their apologies.

 I was far more disappointed to hear some of the reaction from “fellow” runners expressing anger against the organisation, both toward the professional events team and the volunteers. I feel that their attitude goes against the whole ethos of the running community, at best is not sporting and is rude and antisocial.

 On the day, I spoke to several hundred people who expressed how much they enjoyed the day and how good the event organisation was. I would like to thank everyone involved in the Marathon of the North: the organisers, the volunteers, the spectators and the other runners for a great day. I will be returning to the event next year, and I hope for many more years to come.

Jill Kisler

Hands off mail

CAN’T this Government leave anything alone? I am taken aback at the way they want rid of not only the Royal Mail but also seem hell-bent on closing all our post offices. The man in the street must surely take a stance and oppose these drastic changes that the Tories, heavy-handed as usual, will push through in a callous way, without consultation.

 Shades of pit closures, our manufacturing and ship-building closures can be comparable.

 There is no democracy when Cameron gets these ideas in his head. We depend on our postman and rely on our local post offices.

 They are often taken for granted, but are a lifeline for the elderly who don’t get out much.

 Hands off, Cameron – leave our services to us!

Name and address supplied

Bus pass thanks

I WOULD like to thank the person who picked up my bus pass on the Number 3 bus on Friday, May 10.

 Also the driver of the Nexus bus who helped me to pick it up from the Wheatsheaf depot.

 I am very grateful to you.

Mrs A Huggins,