Green belt homes are not the answer

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From: Rob Elliott, Scrooby Street, Greasbrough.

I READ with interest your article and Editorial comment on present-day housing developments (The Yorkshire Post, March 24).

It is Communities Secretary Eric Pickles who wants to coerce councils to build on green belt as opposed to brownfield sites.

Not only does this policy destroy thousands of acres of crop producing land, it also removes the same acreage of rain absorbing land, thus exacerbating flooding problems in years to come.

Recently Mr Pickles was involved in the blame game as to who was responsible for the flooding problems in the South.

In years to come when flooding is more persistent and widespread, will Mr Pickles then accept the blame? I think not because by then he will no doubt have a seat in the House of Lords.

From: Mr Max Hey, Fairway Grove, Bradford.

The Tories have starved public housing of cash for investment and expansion although New Labour didn’t set a brilliant example.

There is a real housing crisis in London and elsewhere and it needs to be addressed. However, the example of Haringey council to meet profiteer Arup on a yacht in Cannes to discuss possible investing in the borough’s housing is both ill-advised and ill-timed.

Public housing is most efficiently funded by the taxpayer but even if private cash is needed, swanning off to Cannes to discuss it sends exactly the wrong message to those struggling to find somewhere to live in north London.

Rates bills are
killing trade

From: Elisabeth Baker, Broomhill Crescent, Leeds.

I WAS sorry to read of the closure of the long-established homeware shops of Peter Maturi & Sons (The Yorkshire Post, March 24). The reasons for them ceasing to trade are given as “...pressures of internet shopping and excessive business rates and rent”.

This is not the first business to fold because of the greed of landlords and the shortsightedness of local councils in imposing massive business rates which are affordable only to branches of large national companies.

Without these enormous costs, the impact of internet shopping could probably have been overcome. The problem of excessive rent and rates is clear to see in the number of empty shops in suburban shopping streets as well as in the city centre. Soon there will be nothing but department stores and chains of fashion shops in the centre of Leeds. There will be no independent retailers left.

New look
welcomed

From: David F Chambers, Sladeburn Drive, Northallerton.

I THINK the recent modifications to The Yorkshire Post are very welcome and well-planned.

However, if the chap reading his copy nearby emits a stifled groan it is because he has met with another of those smart-ass headlines: “Ouse Complaining Now....?” (The Yorkshire Post, March 13). Well, I for one.

How many more of these side-splitting puns can we take?

He’s struggling with a vertical pleat running down its length, somehow caused after the actual printing. Neither Bernard Ingham (The Yorkshire Post, March 13) nor Bill Carmichael (The Yorkshire Post, March 20) are above ending a sentence with a preposition, but these are minor details and well worth putting up – er – with.

From: Bob Brooker, St Catherine’s Drive, Lincoln.

FOR the last 30 plus years, The Yorkshire Post has started my day off with a big kick (yes, the sports page first, great coverage) and I read the copy throughout the day. The broadsheet is just great against the insipid tabloids.

The Yorkshire Post during the last two weeks have really increased my enjoyment daily - better print, even better layout magazine sections and colour supplement. Congratulations!

Politics in
disrepute

From: Phil Hanson, Beechmount Close, Baildon, Shipley.

I WATCHED Nick Clegg’s performance in the LBC debate with Nigel Farage. To say Clegg brought politicians into disrepute would, in my view, be an understatement!

Clegg avoided answering direct questions with such determination that he made my blood boil! The facts are simple , that mass immigration has held pay down in the UK, and as a result we are worse off. Businesses have to work hard to improve productivity and do so, however the free availability of low pay seekers from the eastern states of the EU has held wages down and reduced training needs for our school leavers.

As a voter, I really do hope that Clegg gets the boot at the next election as his slippery answer dodging style is beneath contempt!

Don’t ruin 
the market

From: Edward Moss, Park Street, Manchester.

LEEDS City Council is meeting next week to consider plans for the historic Leeds Market in view of the new Victoria Gate Development.

I just hope that it doesn’t turn into the usual ‘blind leading the incapable’ that so many councils (not just Leeds) initiatives do.

Will there, for example, be the usual “no reference” to the poor souls currently working on the market who are just trying to earn a living?

Sadly, the council’s record to date with regard to Leeds Markets can’t, by any stretch of the imagination, be described as enviable.