Letters, Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Have your say

Anger over blast planning meeting

I ATTENDED the planning committee meeting on Thursday, March 7, and listened to objections against granting Biffa waste services permission to carry out a huge single blast at Houghton quarry toxic landfill.  

 I also listened to Mike Harty, the project manager for Biffa, use scare-mongering tactics to try to justify its planning application.

 I was not convinced by Mr Harty’s performance. It was a disgraceful end to the meeting, after half of the committee were not convinced by Biffa’s attempted justification, for the chair to cast his deciding vote in favour of allowing this application to proceed.

 The short delay from last week’s deferment is not enough time for a proper or full review of the facts to take place and be verified.

 If this blast does go wrong, we will know who to blame, won’t we!

 All the objectors put forward sound arguments for refusing this application. Indeed, many members of the planning committee put valid questions which were not adequately responded to by Mike Harty or the sub-contractor for blasting.  

 The answers given by Biffa’s reps appeared to me at times to be evasive or unconnected to the question. Some committee members had to repeat their question several times.

 If work at this unnecessary landfill had been halted by Sunderland Council at the correct time, Biffa’s workers would not be at risk, would they?

 If this toxic landfill folly had not commenced under a Labour council in the first place or had been properly monitored, thousands of homes and businesses and people would not be at risk and up in arms now.

 Perhaps it is time for Biffa to remove totally all toxic material from Houghton landfill, and take it to the USA, where Biffa has its headquarters and bury it under one of its deserts.

 Local elections are coming soon and the people of Houghton and Sunderland will have the opportunity to cast their votes appropriately.


Fence Houses.

What about the state of the roads?

IT’S all well and good Sharon Hodgson MP, voicing her concerns over maternity pay, but what about the problems closer to home?

 How about our chaotic and crumbling road system? Potholes, cracked speed humps, the lack of clear and visible road markings, faulty traffic lights, and the fact that many roads merely take you round in circles, are all indicative of Labour’s continuing failure in Sunderland.

 No doubt Ms Hodgson will blame Coalition cuts, but nothing was done while her party was in power, and I defy anyone who has spent any time in the city to say Labour is doing a good job!

M Brown,


Striking back?

IF the police get the right to strike and take to the streets in protest at job losses, will ex-pitmen be justified in charging at them on horseback and hitting them with big sticks?

Derek Robe,


IS IDS taking a shot at Royals?

SO Ian Duncan Smith states there are some families in this country with three generations who have never worked.

 I’m suprised at Ian picking on the Royal family like that, I thought he was a bang-on Royalist.

 He must have fancied himself for a knighthood after all his hard work taking benefits from the sick and disabled and diverting it towards tax cuts for the rich, which the Royal family belong to.

Ged Taylor