Letters November 5: Why Boycott is disqualified for knighthood

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Roger Ingham MBE, Aldersley Avenue, Skipton.

I DISAGREE with your Editorial (The Yorkshire Post, October 26) advocating a knighthood for Geoffrey Boycott. The reason? His endorsement of South Africa’s apartheid regime.

Anyone who even mildly supported that rebels cricket tour, of which Boycott was a key figure in 1981-82, was knowingly nullifying the efforts of the rest of the sporting world in trying to bring down the apartheid barrier.

Had there been a ban on white South Yorkshire people partaking in sport and fulfilling other opportunities, then Geoffrey Boycott would never have been heard of.

Religion, political preference, or even choice of newspaper, we can change, but the colour of our skin remains steadfast whether approving or otherwise.

The sport of cricket has had more than its fair share of knighthoods in any case, so why not instead channel your promotional efforts on two Yorkshire legends from rugby league, which has yet to be recognised with any such honour? Arise then, sirs Neil Fox and Johnny Whiteley.

Both of them – amongst many other achievements – were stars of Ashes conquests both at home and Down Under. The all-time and probably never to be superceded world record points scorer, Fox, and Whiteley, who still coached and ran amateur teams when aged well into his eighties, have far superior knighthood credentials.

Moreover, they are two sporting giants who have never lost sight of their roots.

Sad neglect 
of industry

From: Edward Grainger, Nunthorpe, North Yorks.

It’s all very well for Sir Bernard Ingham to castigate those in our political system who without seemingly any knowledge of heavy manufacturing have signed Britain up to any number of ”green deals” (The Yorkshire Post, October 28).

The fault is that the imposition of our decreasing carbon dioxide target emissions to reduce the effects of global warming have been going on for a very long time, mostly under all governments.

The environmentalists have held sway for far too long, as their rhetoric has been listened to, much to the detriment of our basic manufacturing capabilities, like steel.

Perhaps now politicians 
will get real, protect what is left of the steel industry and set our own targets to achieve what is realistic rather than the ridiculous.

The pity is that when the government Ministers look back on 2015 and the months after the general election they will realise that many factors have led to the loss of the second largest steel making plant in Europe, at Redcar through their inability to appreciate an industry in crisis.

Repeatedly, the announcement in the Commons by the Prime Minister of a possible reduction in energy costs within the steel industry comes far too late for the Redcar steel workers, their families and the Teeside communities, who will not forgive this catastrophic example of industrial neglect and vandalism on a massive scale.

Churchill 
on Europe

From: GJ Banks, Poplar Drive, Bridlington.

“Europe is the home of all the great parent races of the Western world. It is the origin of most of the culture, arts, philosophy and science both of ancient and modern times.

“If Europe were once united in the sharing of its common inheritance, there would be no limit to the happiness, to the prosperity and glory which its three or four hundred million people would enjoy.

“We must build a kind of United States of Europe. In this way only will hundreds of millions of toilers be able to regain the simple joys and hopes that make life worth living.”

So said Winston Churchill, a man to whom many of us owe our freedom, in 1946. Those who are contemplating isolating our small island should ponder on these words.

Language barrier

From: Brian Sheridan, Redmires Road, Sheffield.

Hilary Andrews’s remark that “children of parents where the mother does not speak English before they enter formal schooling seem to learn quickly from their peers” (The Yorkshire Post, November 2) brings to mind an experience at my local curry house.

While waiting for my weekly order I like to engage with the Bangladeshi staff. Recently one of them was accompanied by his son who must have been about 10.

I do not know how much English his mother spoke but the lad joined in the conversation when appropriate, resulting in my commenting on his articulacy. “Hmmm,” shrugged the father, unimpressed, “but his Bengali is rubbish”.

Flying visit

From: David B Gore, Brough.

Further to your letter from Jo Cambage (The Yorkshire Post, October 17), with memories of the Vulcan’s visit to Yeadon Airport in 1953, my wife and I were married on June 1, 1963.

We were having our reception at Dick Hudson’s pub above Bingley. On that day I’m sure it was the annual Yeadon Air Show. We had the amazing experience of seeing two, maybe three Vulcans flying very low and slow over the moors, which would be their flight path from Yeadon.