January 23 Letters: North needs transport boost now

From: Colin Bamford, Emeritus Professor, University of Huddersfield.

THE recent report from the Commons Public Accounts Committee (The Yorkshire Post, January 16) only confirms what “we up North” have known for some time, namely a lack of joined-up thinking when it comes to transport infrastructure development whether it be for rail, road or even air transport.

As The Yorkshire Post has reported on various occasions, we currently receive about a quarter of centrally funded transport investment compared to London and parts of the South East. Recent announcements have stressed the link between new road and rail investment and the realisation of a so-called Northern Powerhouse for growth in the national economy. Yet the bits and pieces required for this to happen seem to surface from time to time in a piecemeal way.

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Work on HS2 needs to start in the North as well as at its southern end. Recently announced new road improvements also need to get underway to relieve the unacceptable levels of road congestion. And, although I am highly sceptical, more information needs to be given on the planned route for HS3. Will it go through Huddersfield, for example? Also on my wish list would be to see more national commitment to Doncaster as an international airport. With its excellent rail links, its development would be a much cheaper alternative to what seems to be the inevitable expansion of Heathrow.

Deflation is a serious worry. It would be sound Keynesian economics for transport schemes planned for the North to be now given the green light.

Free to debate Israel’s acts

From: Paul Elmsley, Hellifield.

I DON’T believe British people are anti-Semitic and I think we have as good a relationship with Jewish/Israeli people who live in this country, as we do with other religious and cultural groups.

I believe the average Briton is able and willing to live with and understand the differences of most cultures who live in our communities and who have done so over many centuries.

I think that any anti-Semitic feelings and statements exist because of Israel and the right-wing Government who carry out such policies as the genocide in the Gaza Strip and the Jewish settlements in the West Bank.

The intimidation of the Palestinian people in these areas is not how British people would treat communities in our own country and therefore they appear an anathema to us.

I believe that healthy debate about radical policies is of benefit to all our communities and the peoples within them.

Any and everybody should 
be allowed to express a view without fear of intimidation, 
or isolation.

Resorting to violence, as in recent events in France, Nigeria and Pakistan, should be condemned and resisted by all.

From: Amanda Taylor, Summerbridge, Harrogate.

AS the writer of a historical crime novel that deals with seeds of anti-Semitism sown in East London in 1902, in the form of the British Brothers’ League, I was dismayed to see how little coverage the world’s media gave to the victims in the kosher grocery in Paris.

The Jews were persecuted long before Christ walked the earth – they have been the whipping boys of Europe for every social ill.

I am not Jewish. I do not approve of Israeli expansion 
in the West Bank. But I do recognise that while the historical cry of “kill the Jews” echoes in our lands, whether it be from the mouths of Nazi fascists or gun-toting Islamic extremists, we will never be able to call ourselves a civilised and democratic society – that is worth fighting for.

Waste and wartime

From: Raymond Shaw, Elland.

HOW true is Canon Storey’s letter regarding wartime austerity (The Yorkshire Post, January 19). What he says regarding waste is quite correct, more concerning is that today waste food is expensively destroyed and cannot be fed to animals as swill. Some waste food in the war years was sterilised and sold as animal feed, named Tottenham Pudding, for which there was always a healthy demand from livestock farmers.

His comments on Africa also remind me of the days when I walked through the streets of Cairo, the length of both Christian and Muslim Anglo -Egyptian Sudan, as well as cities, towns and villages of Kenya, Uganda or Tanganyika without any thought of ever being mugged, kidnapped or harmed. All the above during the time of the much maligned colonial rule.

Bias damages BBC image

From: Colin Holland, Wolverhampton, West Midlands.

WILLIAM Snowden’s comments and answers to questions from the BBC Trust were spot on (The Yorkshire Post, January 17).

I filled in a review sent to me by the BBC a few years ago. The final report had absolutely nothing about the bias of the BBC nor the inadequacy of the so called “Trust”. Now we have a left wing quango queen in charge of the Trust who is married to a BBC employee. Worldwide they have made the BBC lose its reputation; yet they believe they are doing a good job for Britain with their ludicrous PC agenda.