Letters, Saturday, February 16, 2013

Have your say

Crowtree is still needed in city

OUR “forward thinking” council has finally got its way with the closure of the Crowtree Leisure Centre.

 The same council that, after 11 years, spent £3million pounds making the Vaux site into a car park (that hardly anyone uses as it is too far away), only to announce less than a year later that it will be torn up to make way for the new public square.

 Does it really expect us to believe that there are investors lining up to develop the area covered by Crowtree?

 A city needs a leisure centre that is accessible to all. Crowtree was and is in an ideal place.

 What the council should be doing is investing in it. Reopen the ice-rink and leisure pool, accept casual bookings again and it would get its money back within a very short space of time.

 An inquiry by an investor, who subsequently wasn’t interested, was the reason the council closed the ice-rink years ago and the assumption that everyone would go to the Aquatic Centre when the leisure pool closed was totally wrong.

 People with children go to Temple Park in South Shields because its pool is warm and fun.

 Sunderland has just been voted one of the most obese cities in the country and we are closing the most central leisure centre.

 The indoor bowling club has over 400 members, many of whom live in the town centre – where are they supposed to go?

 Councillors have suggested Houghton but they certainly don’t have room to accommodate all of these people and that is supposing they could get there in the first place.

 Crowtree squash club is alive and all seven courts are still in good condition and well used. Where are they going to play. Ashbrooke has been suggested but Ashbrooke is a private club.

 There are also dozens if not hundreds of people involved in five-a-side football, gymnastic and trampoline clubs – where can they go?

 A petition with 26,000 signatures meant absolutely nothing, yet it took only 30,000 signatures to prevent the billion pound bonuses being paid to the fat cat bankers.

 What a pity we can’t prevent the obscene amount of allowances our councillors claim.

S Gibson,


Save our centre

THE Crowtree Leisure Centre building has served its natural life – so they say. How stupid can you get?

 This council has not changed since the days of our old Town Hall, when it sold that and condemned one of our leading streets – Fawcett Street. Don’t let it do the same with our leisure centre.

 Can you remember when the Billingham Forum was falling to bits. It was said it was too expensive to repair. The ice-rink was out of date, the stage was rotting, nobody was interested. Look at it now. Money was spent on it and now it is thriving.

 Don’t let that Watson and Speding ruin any more of our city.

 Councillors say they want the site to build more shops. How many more places do they want?

 They have got the Vaux site – closed and derelict for 12 years. They cleared the supermarket in Park Lane – empty for 10 years. Holmeside is like a ghost town and John Street is empty. How much more do they want to ruin?

 They say you can go to the baths at Hetton, The Aquatic Centre, Raich Carter Centre, which is okay for those with transport – but again everyone is going out of town.

 Rebuild the leisure centre and people will come into our town.

 Come on, people of Sunderland,

don’t let them get away with


Mr W Connolly,

Ford Estate

Bad organisation

ON February 11, I went to Springwell Health Centre for a fasting blood test. I arrived at 8.30am and reported to the receptionist and sat down to wait my turn.

 There were about six people before me and quite a lot more came after me, but by 9.20am there was virtually no movement and some six people started to leave telling the receptionist that they would come back another time as some of them were going to work.

 The majority of those who waited were elderly and many were also waiting for fasting tests, meaning we’d had nothing to eat or drink.

 A man sitting next to me told me that he had been last week but after waiting 45 minutes he went home, and that the way it was looking he would likely do the same again today and come back another day – “when they get some staff”.

 I finally got in for my blood test, which took just five minutes in total, at 9.50am – after one hour and 20 minutes waiting.

 As my husband had to go to work I had to take the bus, arriving home at 10.30am, some two-and-a-quarter hours after leaving.

 I understand that treatment room nurses do have other duties and procedures other than blood tests and that if there is a member of staff short then times will extend, however, it appears that there was little effort made to manage the situation until it had become a problem.

 Maybe if there were specific days for blood tests, dressings and other treatments it would be easier to manage.

 I was also told that the two toilets in the area have been out of action for over a week.

Mrs V Sturgess,


We need treasure

SO the skeleton of Richard III has been found in a car park in Leicester.

 It has certainly put Leicester on the map.

 Perhaps if Sunderland was to excavate the Vaux site, preferably before it is built on, perhaps we might also find something in the way of a potential national treasure – Lord Lucan or maybe even Shergar.

Robert Tomlinson,