September 23: How can Leeds move on with no Metro?

From: James Bovington, Church Grove, Horsforth, Leeds.

From: James Bovington, Church Grove, Horsforth, Leeds.

YOUR recent article about how Leeds will progress if it imitates and indeed emulates cities like Barcelona struck a chord with me as Barcelona has one of the best, most extensive municipal and regional metro networks in Europe. This is surely a key to its economic and cultural success as millions of people are able conveniently to access its centre with the numerous job opportunities and tourist sights to be found there?

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Yet there is no plan in Leeds for a metro system. Our transport chiefs are unable even to plan for a station at White Rose which could take up to half a million car journeys annually off the overcrowded roads as well as encourage new customers from across the region. As for the convenience that could be offered by a city centre Cross Rail or underground metro like those which operate successfully in Glasgow, Liverpool and Newcastle, it is not on their radar. Indeed the most recent report commissioned as to the possible location of new rail stations was a highly expensive exercise in why the majority of us should never get a station, rather than what is needed in order dramatically to increase rail access to most areas of West Yorkshire.

When Councillors Lewis, Wakefield and others attend international conferences at our expense at which they will see efficient modern transport systems showcased just how do they explain that they cannot, will not, plan for an integrated metro network for Leeds. Don’t we deserve it? As some Spanish visitors said to me a few years ago, ‘where is the metro station to get back to our hotel?’ I’m still looking for it and this from the city that did have a detailed plan post war to modernise its tram network by putting them underground in central Leeds.

Style doesn’t suit paper!

From: Alex Strickland, Childwall Road, Liverpool.

I READ with interest your news item on Jeremy Corbyn’s first Prime Minister’s Questions from your Westminster correspondent Kate Proctor (‘Corbyn underwhelms as Marie joins question time experiment’, The Yorkshire Post, September 17).

Whilst people will have different views on the style adopted, it surely is not helpful to reduce the debate to the level of personal insult. The reference to an ‘oversized suit in a shade of time warp beige and mustard tie....’ adds nothing and is hardly the stuff of quality political journalism. We usually get much higher standards from The Yorkshire Post – can we have them back please?

More Lib Dem seats in House

From: Dr Robert Heys, Bar Lane, Ripponden.

LABOUR’S unedifying infighting presents the Liberal Democrats, Labour’s traditional rivals in the field of progressive politics, with a great opportunity to boost their electoral fortunes – a prospect enhanced by the selection of the youthfully dynamic Tim Farron MP as their new leader, which has already stimulated a rise of over 17,000 in party membership.

Hopefully this will be reflected in a substantial increase in Lib Dem MPs in the next Parliament, leading to a fairer more widely prosperous and tolerant society while avoiding disastrous actions, such as the invasion of Iraq.

Playing into hands of left

From: Brian H Sheridan, Redmires Road, Sheffield,

I ALWAYS wince when I see the word “indigenous” brought into the debate on immigration. According to the OED it could legitimately be used to describe people who first inhabited these islands or those who were born here, regardless of their ethnicity, though purists would not recognise the latter interpretation. Sadly, when invoked by the Right – and it is usually the Right –it sometimes betrays underlying racist tendencies.

I am sure this is not the case with B Dixon (The Yorkshire Post, September 21) but, given the evolution of Great Britain, this word can play into the hands of the Left.

Moreover, your correspondent is mistaken in claiming that Britain is “the most densely populated country in Europe”. Of the major nations that would be the Netherlands, followed by Belgium with Britain next, only slightly denser in population than Germany which has long been remarkably immigrant friendly.

Home truths on renting

From: Coun Tim Mickleburgh (Lab), Boulevard Avenue, Grimsby.

REGARDING the replies (The Yorkshire Post, September 18) to my letter about “Homes Under the Hammer”, I feel they missed the point that I was trying to make. For my concern wasn’t that anybody (if they have the money, that is) couldn’t purchase the properties on offer, but that they were being taken by the buy-to-let brigade.

To me this should be discouraged, as it reduces the level of home ownership in Britain, while increasing the number of multi-property owners.

Which certainly isn’t the “all in it together” approach that David Cameron allegedly was supposed to favour.