Letters, Thursday, August 15, 2013

Have your say

Put the kettle on for cancer care

THERE’S nothing lovelier than getting together with your nearest and dearest and having a gossip over a drink and nibbles.

 The good news is, you can do that and support Breast Cancer Care, by hosting a strawberry tea.

 It could be a proper British spread with sarnies and Victoria sponge, or you could barely lift a finger and just have some strawberries with a spot of cream.

 Either way, you’ll help make a difference to the 55,000 people diagnosed with breast cancer each year.

 Sadly, most of us, including myself, know someone who’s been affected by this awful disease. But the charity provides fantastic support including a free helpline, online forums and face to face support, which help people every step of the way.

 You’ve got until Saturday, August 31, to host a strawberry tea – if you’re already registered, get cracking. If not, please visit breastcancercare.org.uk/strawberry or call 0870 164 9422 for a free fund-raising pack full of ideas.


Barbara Windsor MBE

Search for family

I AM seeking descendants of Aaron and Elizabeth (nee Reed) Frater, who were married in All Saints’ Church, Penshaw on May 19, 1805.

 It seems they had eight children, seven of whom appear to have survived to adulthood.

 The best information I have, so far, is: Hannah married Henry Smith in 1830; Ann married in either 1840 or 1847; Elizabeth married Michael Fairless in 1833; Jane married David Dixon in 1838 and they moved to Surrey; Aaron was born in 1819 but I am unable to establish whether he married or not; Ralph married Mary Stott in 1842; Margaret married John Crow in 1847.

 I am a great-grandson of Ralph, who eventually settled in Nelson, New Zealand, in the 1860s after having left England in 1856 for the goldfields of Victoria, Australia.

 I have recently made contact with some of Hannah’s descendants and will be meeting them when we visit Durham next month.

 We would love to hear from anyone else who is descended from Aaron and Elizabeth.

 I can be contacted at either lyndaterryfrater@xtra.co.nz or thorpe47@icloud.com.

Terry Frater,


New Zealand

Easing pressure

THERE has been a well-reported increase in the number of patients attending hospital A&E departments.

 The Government has recently announced an extra £500million for the NHS to spend on easing pressure on A&E departments over the winter.

 What has been less-well reported has been the fact that this problem goes back to Labour’s 2004 GP contract which let 90 per cent of GPs opt-out of out-of-hours care – the real reason behind the increase in numbers going to A&E.

 Labour creates the problem; Conservatives provide the solution – the story of British politics for the best part of the last century.

Peter Wood

There’s no hope

MARJORIE Matthews states that the UK is massively overcrowded and that this country has five months to stop Bulgarians and Romanians flooding in – all the fault of the EU, which I heartily agree with. We do not have room for the immigrants we already have.

 We have approximately 380,000 people without homes in the UK and there has been a rapid increase in homelessness.

 My concern is the Bedroom Tax. My main gripe being: Why does the Government pick on law-abiding folk such as the man in the street and parents with off-spring in the army?

 I know in some cases soldiers can ask commanding officers to sign letters confirming that their main home is at their parents’ address and not the barracks where they are stationed, but why are parents of criminals let off paying bedroom tax? I think it is already too late for this country.

Alan ‘The Quill’ Vincent,

Old Penshaw

Get off your high horse

THE letter on immigration (August 9) by Marjorie Matthews was a classic.

 Is she related to Stanley Matthews, by any chance, because he used to rampage up the right wing.

 The only difference was his rampaging entertained the public where Marjorie’s rampaging is designed to frighten the public.

 She also claims the Bedroom Tax has come about thanks to the EU and Labour’s need to accommodate the soon to be descending Romanian and Bulgarian immigrants.

 Have a word with yourself, Marge.

 Whatever political party Marjorie belongs to, it’s time to hang up her boots before she gets sent off for incitement.

Ged Taylor,


Support new dog laws

NEW dog laws are coming in and not before time.

 Most dog walkers I see do not have their animals on leads, walking them among houses and gardens as if they had a perfect right to do so.

 Not before time, owners should be heavily fined by the local authorities.

 This new law, I think, will be supported by the vast majority of dog-loving people unless, of course, they are not very well versed in their responsibilities as pet owners.

 Councillors should support these new laws with enthusiasm.

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