From: Chris Megson, Ashopton Road, Bamford, Derbyshire.
You are right to highlight the growing North-South divide as part of your Big Debate series. If the UK is going to function successfully in the future it needs to be addressed.
It is proposed to spend billions on high speed rail to make travel between the North and London a bit quicker – but what about the infrastructure in the North?
I suspect that the northern cities are supporting HS2 because it’s the only game in town and they don’t want to be left out.
It is quite possible, however, that HS2 will only increase the flow of people, jobs and economic activity to the capital.
The main city regions between Liverpool and Hull need to be planned and developed as a northern economic region and act as a counterbalance to London.
They should therefore receive a high level of infrastructure funding. It is apparent from the figures you have provided that the opposite is the case.
From: Judy Robinson, chief executive, Involve Yorkshire and Humber.
The Yorkshire Post must be congratulated for highlighting the possibility of health funds going from the North to the South (Yorkshire Post, November 27).
We see older people not getting the support they need or families struggling with low wages or no wages. All this is made worse by the growing North-South divide.
The NHS is urging an “army of Good Samaritan” volunteers to help the elderly this winter while at the same time charities that organise volunteering, befriending and lunch clubs are being hit hard by funding cuts.
Involve urges the Government not to divert money for health from the North, to directly support and fund charities to be “Good Samaritans” this winter and to devolve power and resources to the North so that we become a fairer nation.
Sykes right to push for change
From: C Giddings, Springwood Drive, Copley Lane, Halifax.
With reference to Sarah Freeman’s interview with Paul Sykes (Yorkshire Post, November 25) it is difficult not to support his views in his endeavours, through Ukip, to free the UK from the ever increasing grip of the EU.
Neither the Conservatives, Labour nor Lib Dems seem to understand the frustration and strength of feeling which continued immigration and petty rules and regulations are having on the people of this country.
Quite rightly, Paul Sykes points out that we voted to become part of a trading community with our membership of the Common Market, not as we are now in a United States of Europe.
Our borders should be better protected and we should be able to deal with law-breakers who should not be here in a speedier fashion.
Whether Ukip has the strength to persuade the other parties to bring about change, or whether this will be achieved by holding a referendum remains to be seen.
I feel certain, however, that Paul Sykes and others of his belief, character and financial capability will do their utmost to make a change. I wish them all the best.
From: David W.Wright, Uppleby, Easingwold.
The welcome and timely intervention by Paul Sykes into the EU fiasco has shown very clearly the unarguable case for the UK to leave the EU before we get dragged further into the undemocratic and declining United States of Europe project.
The latest furore over the UK’s proposal to clampdown on the benefits for migrants and the predicted criticism of our “nasty” country by the unelected EU bureaucrats simply shows that it is high time to leave, regain complete control of our borders and legislation.
At long last David Cameron is making the right noises about his plans to overhaul the welfare rules, but this is only scratching the surface of the problems.
We should listen to and support Paul Sykes and Ukip, who alone are representing the enlightened and realistic UK patriots.
Outlaw phones while driving
From: S Acaster, Totley, Sheffield.
Roger Dobson commented incisively on the reality of those who insist on driving while using mobile telephones (Yorkshire Post, November 23).
It’s potentially lethal, yet only attracts a few penalty points to a convicted driver’s licence.
Endorsable offences can result in disqualification from driving, but magistrates either don’t understand the principle or resolutely refuse to implement such ‘shock’ action.
They, like the convicted, are playing with the lives of the innocent.
Even hands-free dispensation should be outlawed – the critical point isn’t what the fingers of the driver are doing but the mind.
Not worthy of compassion
From: Mrs J Bookbinder, Cottingley Gardens, Leeds.
I WAS appalled at R Hartley’s letter (Yorkshire Post, November 26) pleading for compassion for little Hamzah Khan’s mother.
She chose to have eight children and live in squalor.
Does this correspondent seriously think she would have taken any notice of her doctor suggesting contraception as a good idea?
She did not have one ounce of compassion for her defenceless son and deserves none herself.
Getting off ‘Scot free’
From: Jim Pike, Nursery Close, Alwoodley, Leeds.
IT is reported that Alex Salmond’s independent Scotland will retain links to the Bank of England, thus ensuring that England will finance Scotland’s deficits (Yorkshire Post, November 26).
Whoever coined the expression “Scot free” certainly knew what he was talking about.