Osborne affair shows cost 
of rail fares

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Have your say

From: Coun Nader Fekri, (Calder Ward, CMBC), Cheetham Street, Hebden Bridge.

WHILE having little sympathy for the Chancellor George Osborne’s unauthorised and self-assigned seat upgrade, surely the real scandal was the horrifically high cost of said upgrade of £160 (Yorkshire Post, October 22).

Britain already has the most expensive railways in Europe. Research by the Passenger Focus Group showed that of the eight major economies in Europe for short journeys (up to 25 miles) Britain is twice as expensive as France and four times as expensive as Italy. For mid-length journeys (25-50 miles) Britain is twice as expensive as the Netherlands and again four times as expensive as Italy. Worse yet is that fares are due to go up in the new year.

Indeed, the walk-on price for that Wilmslow-London route used by Mr Osborne is more than 80p per mile and that’s just for standard class.

If public transport becomes too expensive, then not only will poorer households become less able to travel (or become completely reliant on the car), but overall economic recovery and growth could be severely hampered.

From: Martin Fletcher, Savile Close, Emley.

WHAT is the matter with these so-called intelligent people?

First of all, George Osborne should have showed his ticket and paid the extra when the conductor asked to see his ticket. His aide should be sacked for gross stupidity. Did she really think a RMT member would let him off?

More grist to the Labour mill. When will they learn?

Armed Forces Minister Andrew Robotham should resign for Commons stupidity and Andrew Mitchell’s position was untenable three weeks ago.

Thank goodness most of the rent fiddlers are Labour.

From: David McKenna, Hall Gardens, Rawcliffe, Goole.

WHILE Ed Miliband constantly castigates members of the coalition Government for quoting that “We are all in it together”, perhaps he should take a look around at his gang to see what new scams they are up to now.

We read that a whole cadre of Labour MPs, along with several members of the coalition, have come up with a new ruse, and these “honourable” people include shadow Ministers Andy Burnham, Jim Murphy and Chris Bryant, along with Sheffield MP Clive Betts and Hemsworth’s Jon Trickett. Meg Munn jumped ship before the balloon went up, apparently.

We read (Yorkshire Post, October 20) that the latest wheeze is to rent out a flat that you have bought as an MP then rent it out, making, in that Labour stalwart Linda Riordan’s case, an estimated extra £1,000 per month.

This is on top of the money that the long-suffering taxpayer has allocated to these graspers for their “living costs”.

If only these people, who seem pretty smart at spotting a financial loophole, could see how grasping and completely out of touch they are.

From: David W Wright, Uppleby, Easingwold.

THE pathetic and expected over reaction to the former Chief Whip’s spat by Ed Miliband and his Labour cohorts is nothing compared to the continuing saga by the media who have made an enormous meal over the petty affair instead of concentrating their energies and time on highlighting the ills of the EU and its effect on our economy and independence.

Loyalty earns little reward

From: David A Reekie, Kirk House, Kirk Road, Romanby, Northallerton.

MAY I commend Saturday’s Essay (Yorkshire Post, October 20). It should be made compulsory reading for all, and certainly reflects my recent experience as a loyal customer of Npower.

They became my dual fuel supplier upon their takeover of Calor Gas some 25 to 30 years ago. I have always paid by direct debit. A year ago I moved into assisted living accommodation and immediately switched from the existing supplier to Npower. Because of an obvious fuel economy in my new flat, I asked for a reduction to my monthly payments. This was refused.

I then entered into protracted negotiations with a senior executive who again refused to reduce my payments. A year on I have been billed on established meter readings. My monthly payment has been halved and direct debit discounts for the coming six months taken into account, however the direct debit discounts due for the past 11 months have been conveniently forgotten.

As a pensioner nearing my 87th birthday, I intend to take the matter up again with Npower – but in truth I don’t want the hassle and Npower will continue to treat a long-standing loyal customer with utter disdain.

Give this idea a chance

From: George Jardine, York.

RE Tom Richmond’s column (Yorkshire Post, October 20), I am a Neighbourhood Watch co-ordinator and I have attended a couple of presentation from North Yorkshire Police Authority on the coming of commissioners.

Many great ideas struggled to get accepted in their early days – emancipation for women and the NHS to name but two. I can’t help feeling that our chief constables have dropped the ball in terms of honesty and competence on too many occasions over the past decade or so. The current hierarchy is broken – this is an attempt to fix it.

There has grown a divide between the respect people have for the bobby on the beat and the head of the force.

On the whole the Yorkshire Post tends to present a positive slant on life. It will be tempting to turn this occasion into a media fest of negativity – to the benefit of whom? Please give this idea a fair chance.