From: Mike Dennis, Ripon.
WOULD it not be a good idea if the National Health Service (The Yorkshire Post, January 8) became a ‘non-political’ football?
If all the major political parties could agree that a certain amount of money could be spent annually say for the next 20-year period, and this budget was managed by a non-political ‘board of directors’ – including clinicians from a variety of disciplines and specialities and chaired by a political appointee if you like – we could get away from the short-term political mud slinging which has taken place for most of my life.
The amount of the budget could be set at a percentage of GDP which would be agreed by the politicians. The 20-year period could be reviewed and amended at, say, 10 years – but in both cases it would be possible that both the Labour Party and the Conservatives could be ‘in power’ during this time, but the agreed Budget would stand.
Hopefully this could reduce, if not eliminate, the constant bickering which currently takes place.
From: Michael Green, Baghill Green, Tingley.
THE cancellation of January’s non-urgent operations by the NHS (The Yorkshire Post, January 4) looks to have a lot in common with the cancellation of flights last autumn by Ryanair.
Both involve managers who shut their eyes to the blatantly obvious until it was too late.
Both involve a desperate last-minute attempt to avoid the resulting chaos.
Both involve taking it out on the innocent ‘customers’, who are having to put up with the cancellations.
I doubt that heads will roll in either organisation. Why not?
Shooting key to rural areas
From: Roy Burrows, Nidderdale Moorland Group.
I AM writing in response to your recent opinion article by Natalie Bennett “Why fracking is Yorkshire’s number one environmental challenge” (The Yorkshire Post, January 5), and specifically in relation to her assertions regarding grouse shooting in Yorkshire.
The Nidderdale Moorland Group comprises 11 grouse moors covering 40,000 acres of precious North Yorkshire heather upland. We reject outright the illegal persecution of birds of prey.
During the course of the four month 2017 grouse shooting season, we calculate that shoot guests to Nidderdale alone, from countries including Belgium, Holland, New Zealand, Spain, the United States, in addition of course to the UK, accounted for 1,000 overnight stays in the dale and a conservative approximate spend of £100,000.
In total the Group hosted some 150 driven grouse shoot days. On average, each moor employs 35 local people per shoot day with an estimated 5,000 workdays employment, and some £275,000 pumped into the local economy through casual labour alone. Local butchers, vehicle mechanics, schools, farmers merchants, vet practises and others, all benefit from the local grouse shooting.
In summary, in our rural, remote areas grouse shooting is a financial lifeline for local communities and businesses, and, what is more, an important opportunity to come together with old friends and new.
From: Peter Hyde, Driffield.
WHILE I am not in favour of any strike which makes life difficult for working people, I have to say that I feel it is wrong to remove guards from trains (The Yorkshire Post, January 8).
The position of the RMT is a two-edged one. First, whatever the union says, it is about jobs being cut. Second, it is about safety of passengers.
As far as the companies are concerned, it is simply about cutting costs. It is alright for the rail company to offer talks but if they are not prepared to keep guards, there is little to talk about.
Stumped by comparison
From: Brian H Sheridan, Lodge Moor, Sheffield.
COMPARING Theresa May unfavourably with Geoffrey Boycott, Steve Kirk claims that, unlike Mrs May, “Boycott got results and had a proven record of doing the right thing for his country” (The Yorkshire Post, January 8).
The reality is that Boycott was a truly great opening batsman but was a failure as a captain both for England and Yorkshire. It is also alleged that some of those who played with him questioned his credentials as a team player.
Punishment for sex crimes
From: Paul Emsley, Hellifield.
IF Parliament had agreed to chemical castration as part of the punishment of convicted serial rapists, there would not be such a large outcry against yet another stupid decision by the Home Office Parole Board in the case of John Worboys.
A family resemblance
From: Betty Henry, Doncaster.
A LOVELY photo of Pricess Charlotte on her first day at nursery school (The Yorkshire Post, January 9) and so much like a photo of the late Queen Mother, aged 10, which was printed on the 10th anniversary of her death.
From: Edna Austin, Goole.
IN response to Brian Holmes (The Yorkshire Post, January 6), why did his father-in-law not buy a fox-proof hen hut? They do exist.