YP Letters: Northern Powerhouse still grounded

Is Leeds Bradford Airport in the right location?
Is Leeds Bradford Airport in the right location?
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From: Ron Firth, Campsall.

YOUR article (The Yorkshire Post, February 27) indicating the virtual impossibility of a rail link from Leeds to Leeds Bradford Airport comes as no surprise.

Leeds City Council has spent an awful lot of time and money coming to a conclusion that, to the outsider or traveller from the airport, has been obvious for years. The fact that the airport is the highest in England, has virtually no room for a second runway and is subject to closure from inclement weather should have been sufficient reason for a suitable alternative to have been developed long ago.

As your Editorial suggests, a more than suitable alternative exists at Robin Hood, Doncaster. The existing runway can safely accommodate even the world’s largest freight planes. There is room for a second runway, expansion of the terminal buildings and, with the recently completed link road direct to the airport from the M18 motorway, relatively easy motorway access (with the possibility of a dedicated rail link from ECML).

If we want a Northern Powerhouse, rather than just a Leeds Powerhouse, we need to play to the strengths of all areas. Leeds as the financial centre, Doncaster and York as transport hubs and other major towns and cities for manufacturing, engineering etc. All our MPs and councillors need to make this happen, not wait for Government.

From: Roger Backhouse, Upper Poppleton, York.

WHEN I moved to Yorkshire from London, I was shocked to find just how centralised Government had become – and it wasn’t brilliant under their coalition and Labour predecessors.

So reading Sarah Champion’s article (The Yorkshire Post, February 27), I felt considerable sympathy for the Sheffield civil servants who will lose their jobs or if they are “lucky” move to London as the Sheffield Office of the Department for Business Innovation and Skills closes.

The Regional Development Agency for Yorkshire (Yorkshire Forward), like those for the North East and the North West, was closed in 2012 despite successes. Funding cuts to local authorities hinder regeneration work too. It’s notable that UK productivity has fallen since these cuts.

We do not have a British government any more. We have one that speaks for South East England and the financiers of the City of London, though one might be forgiven for thinking that George Osborne is now the chief spokesman for the People’s Republic.

The debate about whether Britain should remain in the EU is a sideshow compared to the real debate of ensuring that all parts of the UK can achieve rising prosperity.

A Northern Powerhouse remains just talk in the face of a relentlessly centralising administration.

Goodness knows I have no time for Scottish nationalism, but I can now understand the motives that led so many Scots to want to break away.

From: Simon Wilson, Horbury, Wakefield.

HAVING been under construction for over 18 months, causing increased congestion and delays, the managed motorway section of the M1 between junctions 41 and 42 finally opened last month. At the weekend, two lanes of the northbound carriageway were closed for resurfacing.

Whether the reworking required was caused by substandard materials, shoddy workmanship or some other reason,

I do hope that penalty clauses were placed in the original contract. Also on Sunday, two Wakefield MDC contractors resurfaced a seldom-used pathway on Queens Drive, 
Ossett and Wakefield Road, Horbury was closed last Monday for one day.

According to signs posted by Wakefield Council, it was still closed at the time of writing.

It is high time we shone a light into every corner of public sector spending, and started to hold budget holders to account.

Israel’s fight to survive

From: Michael Ross, Weeton Lane, Dunkeswick.

TREVOR Wilshaw conveniently omits to mention (The Yorkshire Post, February 24) the endless atrocities carried out against Israeli men, women and 
children since the formation of Israel some 70 years ago by all those bent on the total destruction of the still young Jewish State.

Indiscriminate acts of barbarism continue around the world with a promise of more to come by the same perpetrators. None can be justified.

Falling foul of queue rules

From: ME Wright, Harrogate.

I WAS pleased – but not surprised – to learn that Jayne Dowle is not one to ignore the flouting of British queuing protocols (The Yorkshire Post, February 25). A couple of years back, in a weirdly unguarded moment, I ventured into the sales at Harrogate’s M&S.

Clutching a new scarf and thinking only of a quick escape from this madhouse, I inadvertently joined the front of the pay-queue. Could Jayne’s have been one of the close-to-flailing handbags, from which I was saved by an observant neighbour? Losing her own place, she kindly guided me, like a naughty child, to the back of the queue with “He’s not used to this sort of thing” – true; and never likely to be!