Letters, Saturday, August 17, 2013

Have your say

Town doesn’t need more new homes

RECENT articles in the Sunderland Echo and Seaham and Houghton Star are nothing short of blatant Labour electioneering for Bridget Phillipson and a new Labour Councillor candidate.

 Where has she been since she was elected? I didn’t see any residents in the picture.

 She should already know that Hetton residents have been campaigning for years to resolve the surface and foul water drainage problems caused down in the Grove/Houghton area because of the lack of capacity at Sedgeletch.

 She should already know that we have been opposing Sunderland City Council’s new homes policy, which exacerbates this problem.

 This Labour council’s drive is to allow hundreds of new homes to be built on greenbelt and settlement break sites, such as the land off Murton Lane, North Road, Hetton, land behind the Fire Rescue Station and no doubt Broomhill in the near future.

 Unfortunately, our efforts are no match against the millions of pounds of Government and section 106 money, which pour into city council’s coffers in exchange for allowing these developments to forge ahead.

 There is a public consultation going on at the moment. Residents of Hetton and Houghton need to tell the council that we want to keep what little green and pleasant land we have.

 The population of Hetton and Houghton has barely changed in 50 years and probably won’t in the next 50.

 The sales tactics of the developers of these new homes are contributing acutely to the decline of our neighbourhoods: older, smaller homes are taken in part exchange at knock down prices then put onto the market at even lower prices. They in turn remain unsold, often become dilapidated/boarded up and so the neighbourhoods become more neglected. This is contrary to the new National Planning Policy Framework Policy and counter-productive to the regeneration of the area.

 How about using some of the millions received in grants to compulsory purchase some of the homes in neglected town centre areas and either renovating or rebuilding them or making this a condition of future planning approvals?

Kay Rowham

Easington Lane

Light up seafront

SO sad Robin Middlemass wants the airshow on only two days.

 Old people in homes probably relish the show compared to their average boring days, fed, watered and stuck somewhere until it’s time for bed. Often not seeing or hearing from anyone.

 The fireworks may remind them of Roker and Seaburn, and the good old days on the seafront. The planes will remind them what their youth fought for. Growing old is not much fun, but noise reminds us that we are still alive.

 Those who took up residence on the seafront knew what they were doing.

 If they want peace and quiet, go further inland.

 Many thousands of people look forward to the airshow weekend.

 Now all we need is the old illuminations to be restored and more activities to bring people back to the seafront the other 51 weekends of the year.

Mr J Stott,


Missing history

SO a piece of Sunderland’s history has gone missing in the form of a statue of Sir Walter Raleigh (Echo, August 14).

 Perhaps it was aboard the ship, City of Adelaide, which is on its way to Australia, or then again it may be buried under the Vaux site.

 Who cares? Certainly not Sunderland Council if the City of Adelaide or the Vaux Site are anything to go by.

R Tomlinson,


Better use of cash

SO George Osborne has found another great way to spend taxpayers’ money.

 He’s donating £1million to help restore Hougoumont Farm in Belgium, where British troops fought off waves of French attacks at the Battle of Waterloo.

 If George really wants to honour our armed forces, why doesn’t he just hand the money to the Help For Heroes charity?

 Anyway, I’ll sign off with a pub quiz question for Echo readers. In what classic novel is a character called George Osborne killed at Waterloo?

Henry Whipple,