Lib Dem lack of principle is nothing new

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From: Brian Hardy, All Hallowes Drive, Tickhill.

TOM Richmond warns against overtures the Labour leader Ed Miliband is making to the Lib Dems, posing the question: can Labour return to power without Lib Dem support? (Yorkshire Post, January 29).

In my view, the Lib Dems have a long history of masquerading as all things to all people.

In Scotland and Wales, they will claim to be more nationalist than the nationalists. In traditional Tory areas, they very often pose as moderate Conservatives.

In Labour areas, they will pass themselves off as radical progressives and in areas with a strong racist element they often produce leaflets similar to that of the British National Party.

Labour should steer well clear of the Lib Dems, leave them to share a pad with the Tories, then voters will see what shifty unprincipled characters they really are, and deliver their verdict accordingly.

From: David H Rhodes, Keble Park North, Bishopthorpe, York.

LOOKING ahead and with some restraint in place on government policies, I would suggest that coalition MPs and party activists hold their nerve when it comes to the build-up to and the outcome of the May local elections.

The assumed easy option is for the Lib Dems to break away from the Coalition and to regain their independence (the moral high ground) and revert to their pre-election policies.

Sorry, lads, this will make for an even greater wipe-out for you. Stick with the game plan as the country must come before Tory and Lib Dem party politics.

A break-up would precipitate a general election and current opinion polls predict that the Labour Party would get a clear majority, so no pacts needed.

For all the Lib Dems this would be out of office, out of mind. In respect of the poll lead by the Labour Party, has the public forgotten that the current parlous state of the country was enhanced by the previous government?

Lowry’s longevity

From: Keith Nunn, Burton Street, Farsley, West Yorkshire.

IT was interesting to read that LS Lowry’s The Football Match is expected to sell for around £4m at auction, and that 125 pictures from his oeuvre have already been sold for almost £30m (January 31). If Lowry was alive today, I wonder what he would make of the expensively-assembled team at his beloved Manchester City?

Around £30m in 2011 football money might secure the services of two reasonably high-calibre journeymen players, who might help to propel their team into the upper echelons of the Premier League (as long as they remain fit and committed to the cause, and don’t disembark the team ship for lucrative overseas contracts or even higher wages at other predatory English clubs).

Lowry’s permanent artistic reminders of industrial northern communities gathering ardently for Saturday home matches, matchstick men or otherwise, are a snip at the price. Their cultural longevity will endure far longer than any fleet-footed footballers – or overpaid pundits – parading on television screens for Match of the Day.

A golden opportunity

From: John Pashley, Westcliffe Avenue, Baildon.

YOUR report (Yorkshire Post, February 1) quotes English Heritage’s regional director Trevor Mitchell saying: “Conservation areas offer a golden opportunity for people to take heritage into their own hands and to decide what they value and how they want to protect and enhance it.”

What a pity that this policy was not at the forefront of his mind when, according to the chair of the Bradford Council committee charged with the Odeon planning decision: “English Heritage has backed us into a corner.”

Contrary to its own wishes – and those of the majority of Bradfordians – the Committee felt it had to acquiesce to the English Heritage recommendation that the Odeon could be demolished.

The Odeon is the focal point of the city centre’s conservation area and, since 2003, has been in the ownership of Yorkshire Forward, whose policy of neglect has allowed it to become a cosmetic eyesore.

That the Odeon still stands is due to Yorkshire Forward’s favoured private developer not having the financial wherewithal to build in the hole which demolition would produce – and even Bradford Council cannot contemplate a twin for the stalled Westfield site

English Heritage is now offered a golden opportunity to practise what it preaches and, in restitution for past policy flaws, use its experience and influence to facilitate the retention and renovation of the Odeon building, allowing it to become the lynchpin of Bradford’s social and cultural regeneration.

I am sure that those who have striven for so long to retain this potential symbol of Bradford’s renaissance would now welcome English Heritage’s active support.