From: Bob Watson, Baildon.
I SEE that five Leeds Labour MPs have now joined the bandwagon by slating rail firm Northern for its performance, joining The Yorkshire Post, columnist Tom Richmond and others (The Yorkshire Post, October 29).
Now let me start by saying that Northern should certainly not be immune from criticism, and some of their actions over the last 18 months have not helped.
Having said that, there is no doubt that many of their problems have been caused by issues totally outside their control.
The biggest culprit is Network Rail with the overrun of works being a disaster for all operators. Then there are the new train manufacturers who have not come up with the goods as they originally promised, so the dreaded Pacer units are having to continue into 2020.
So, please let’s have a bit of fairer perspective on this, and see what Northern can do once all track issues are completed, and all the new units are up and running. If problems still continue, then berate Northern by all means, but in the meantime accept that many (but not all) of the problems have been outside their control.
From: Richard Bramall, Sheffield.
IT’S with dismay when I read letters like those of Donald Wood (We cannot afford HS2, The Yorkshire Post, October 21) in which he argues, within his letter about funding HS2, that Tony Blair and Gordon Brown were the cause of the financial crash of 2008. I thought everyone knew that the world banking crisis was caused by the banking industry investing unwisely in the sub-prime property market in the USA.
It was fortunate for all that, despite his failings, Gordon Brown, with his financial experience, was able to get the G7 finance ministers and governments to work in concert to stabilise their own banking systems by heavy investment such as by direct investment in banks, and then by quantitative easing.
If he had not been successful in his work, then we would have had the mother of world recessions and Western capitalism would have been virtually destroyed or at least put back by 20 years.
History will treat Gordon Brown kindly despite his many faults. Gordon Brown saviour of Western capitalism? Yes indeed. Incidentally of course we can afford HS2 and we desperately need the extra capacity it will provide.
Don’t forget HS2 is also as much about speeding up travel between Scotland and the rest of the country as it is about speeding up travel between the North and London.