Letters, Thursday, April 17, 2014

Have your say

Hypocrisy seems to rule this city

ONCE again Sunderland Labour Party are showing what hypocrites they are.

 In my letter dated February 25, I pointed out how its members are running around like headless chickens trying to look like the saviours of our fire and police stations.

 It was Labour politicians in the region, along with Vera Baird our esteemed Police Commissioner, that actually voted to close them down.

 A few days ago I received a card from my MP, Julie Elliott, telling me how she was fighting to reverse the decision. She would have been better off and earned more respect if she had been honest and admitted that Labour councillors had made a monumental error. It is not for me to suggest that Labour politicians may have deliberately created this scenario as a local election issue to save the fire and police stations prior to the local elections – who would do such a thing ?

 So now the hypocrisy continues with the suspension of Coun Rosalind Copeland because she objected to cuts in the city.

 Coun Copeland actually reflected the views of most people in the city about the cuts. We do not want them.

 I doubt that Coun Copeland will be allowed to stand for Labour again.

 It is not hard to see why after Labour councillor benefit fraud, outrageous expense claims, a council leader that supports not working and having up to 10 children while the state pays, that former working class Labour supporters like me are not supporting them in this or any other election.

 I hate saying that I have seen more coming into Sunderland in the last three years than I ever saw under the last Labour Government. There is the new bridge, an industrial park near Nissan, money for training and to get people into work in Sunderland, higher tax allowances, and the freezing of the Council Tax, which is saving me £200 a year.

 I am starting to believe Labour have ran this city into the ground and they have been in charge for far too long. Not that I think any other party have all the answers.

Rebecca Davies,


Incorrect points

I WAS interested to read the letter from Coun George Howe. I feel that I must correct him on a number of incorrect points that he makes.

 I have no responsibility for the fire station and to suggest otherwise is inaccurate. In relation to the relocation of Gillbridge Police Station, the Chief Constable and I have had to take tough decisions as the Government has cut the Northumbria Police budget by more than £60million.

 We are consulting where the public would like the new police bases to be in the city and have had a number of suggestions, though to date, nothing from Coun Howe.

 Regarding Coun Howe’s comments about Fulwell Residents’ Association, I had to attend an emergency meeting late afternoon on the day of the meeting and the then Deputy Commissioner, Mark Dennett, stood in for me and he fully briefed me about the meeting and we followed up all issues raised. For Coun Howe’s information, Mr Dennett has retired.

 Coun Howe wonders why I am attending the meeting with all Sunderland Councillors in early June, simple answer, I did not set the date – that was decided by the council.

 I look forward to meeting Coun Howe at the Fulwell Neighbourhood Watch meeting on Tuesday, to which he has been invited.

Vera Baird QC,

Police & Crime Commissioner

So much for rights

MS McPartland wrote a persuasive letter (April 8) about the position of women in medieval society, but there’s probably a simple explanation why Nick Clegg used the term medieval.

 Perhaps Mr Clegg was thinking of that object of schoolboy humour and comedy films, the chastity belt.

 What’s not so funny is we seem to be living in an age of female genital mutilation. Is this what our Deputy PM is concerned about? Maybe he should have used the word barbaric.

 Back to the Middle Ages. As for women inheriting lands and titles, there was a legal doctrine – jure uxoris – which allowed a husband to take his wife’s title and become co-ruler of her lands.

 This is probably why the first Queen Elizabeth decided never to marry. Daughters of nobles, who couldn’t afford their upkeep were forced to become nuns and spend their lives behind convent walls.

 And don’t forget what happened to Matilda, the rightful sovereign of England.

 Her cousin usurped the throne, and given a choice between a male and female ruler, the Norman barons soon forgot their oath to support her claim.

 So much for women’s right in the 12th Century.

Henry Whipple,


Need for education

THANKS to Chris Mullin for the interesting programme on Radio 4 on Tuesday, April 8, about recycling and landfill.

 I know Chris practices what he preaches as I have seen him recycling at Beach Street.

 There are some people in Sunderland who have never heard of recycling and who don’t care about the environment.

 I wish they could be educated.

 The programme made some good points.

 It made me ask why are people putting food in the bin, while some others have need of food banks?

John Watson,