Greed that led to resort flooding

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From: J Robert Dyson, Langsett Avenue, Filey, North Yorkshire.

HOW do Filey Town Council have the nerve to charge the townsfolk an additional £10,000 precept charges as a compulsory contribution towards the further flood alleviation scheme yet to be carried out in Filey?

It would seem they are they conveniently forgetting that in 2002 and 2007 the town’s surface water drainage system was not fit for purpose, as it was incapable of handling the mandatory once-in-30-years rainfall event.

Anyone wanting to build hundreds of houses on several sites throughout the town would initially examine the pre-Victorian drains to see how much larger the drainage system would need increasing before even thinking about building any homes, to ensure the additional rainwater and foul sewage from these additional homes could be accommodated by the upgraded drainage system.

If the developer was advised it would take 15 years to obtain the funding for upgrading the drainage system, this would dictate the start date for the new estates to commence but our greedy town council and Scarborough Borough Council could not wait that long for the additional council tax they would both receive from these hundreds of additional homes so they commenced building 15 years too soon, with the inevitable consequences of flooding which they caused in 2002 and 2007.

This was put in a nutshell, when Nick Read, from Scarborough Council’s planning department, said in an article (Yorkshire Post, October 31, 2011) that it was important to remember that in 2002 and 2007 there were no drainage systems in place.

As a result of the council’s greed, it was necessary for millions of pounds to be claimed from insurance companies for the restitution of the damage caused by the flooding to hundreds of homes, and apart from the inconvenience of flood victims being deprived of their homes for over six months for the remedial work and drying out to take place, consider the black mark which the insurers will put against the claimants’ names to be possibly used against the claimant at some later date.

Although instead of penalising the councils for inflicting this suffering on the townsfolk, it appears that Filey Town Council do not feel the ratepayers have suffered enough when they take (not ask) for a further £10,000 precept charges as a contribution towards the further flood alleviation scheme yet to be carried out in Filey, when this should have been carried out before the hundreds of homes were built in the first place. Their greed knows no bounds.

Sad day for post office closure

From: Mrs Christine Waddington, St James Street, Clitheroe, Lancashire.

I AM the former postmistress of one of the post offices listed in your front page article ‘Post Office accused of branch closures by stealth’ (Yorkshire Post, September 2).

Our post office (Bright Street, York) had been on the market for two years without a single viewing when we took the decision to close in June 2009 and retire. The day the post office closed was one of the saddest of our lives but we knew that with spiralling overheads and erosion of business, the future was becoming increasingly uncertain.

It is therefore unsurprising that no-one is coming forward to take on these ‘temporarily’ closed branches. Unfortunately the Post Office did not feel we met their criteria under the closure programme and so, like the others listed, we received no compensation whatsoever.

Narrow gauge is an alternative

From: Nigel Boddy, Fife Road, Darlington.

PROPOSALS to reopen any of the lines closed by Dr Beeching are always said to be hugely expensive. How is it, then, that private individuals, along with teams of volunteers, have managed in their spare time to re-lay, run and maintain narrow gauge, 27-inch lines for tourist steam trains?

Diesel locomotives are available to buy today of this gauge. They are used the world over in mining operations and steel works. Narrow gauge trains are much lighter than conventional trains. They run passengers services all over Sardinia. Our old Victorian bridges and viaducts are under less pressure from narrow gauge. Could re-laying some Beeching lines using narrow gauge be cheaper and affordable?

The track bed is almost always still there and in some places sleepers also. Around 95 per cent of the job is already done for us. Is this a better way of relieving pressure on the rail network than spending the money on HS2 instead?

Plea to weather forecasters

From: Mr Ruthven Urquhart, High Hunsley, Cottingham, East Yorkshire.

THIS request may be construed as being somewhat frivolous and facetious and I address it to the radio and TV weather forecasters.

When they summarise as to what we may expect over the next few hours and days, why cannot they be more explicit when referring vaguely to “The North”? Can I beg them to be more specific?

Watford is to the north of London and Cape Wrath is in the north of Scotland, but the climate is very different!

More distinct advice would help us, especially those who farm or work outside on the land.

Turn on car lights in fog

From: Peter Hyde, Driffield.

WE had the first real fog of winter on Thursday. Of course we also got the usual fools driving at speed, using either side lights or no lights at all.

Don’t they know that modern cars can stand lights without depleting the battery? A grey car on sidelights is almost invisible in the fog of today. Of course we don’t have police patrols any longer so unless there is an accident they put others at risk willy nilly.