YP Letters: Honouring sailors then and now

From: Dr Sheila Hopkinson, Gorman Close, Chesterfield.

What more can be done to honour the Merchant Navy?
What more can be done to honour the Merchant Navy?

I WHOLEHEARTEDLY agree with Dennis Ayling’s letter (The Yorkshire Post, November 24). I remember, as a child in the Second World War, my parents telling me about the sailors who risked their lives to bring me food.

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We always had a collection plate for them in the house over Christmas and went carol singing to collect money for them. I find it appalling that it is only recently we have remembered those who sailed on the Arctic Convoys.

The Russians honoured them long before. Remember the Atlantic convoys bringing us essential supplies during the war? They had no defence against enemy attacks but still sailed on. Yes, the Red Ensign should be raised.

Merchant mariners still need our support, whether they are on cargo ships, tankers or cruise vessels, some of them working under conditions which would not be tolerated on land.

The charity I support finds that sometimes a ship owner goes out of business and the ship and its crew are abandoned. It is often only with the help of the charity that they finally get home.

Simple things help such as phone chargers can be provided so that the men can let their families know what is happening.

There are also things we can do like knitting woolly hats!

If you are from the Philippines and find yourself in Aberdeen in December, it is pretty cold.

The charity collects the hats we knit and is able to hand them out to the crews.

It is not just sailors in British ports who are helped – the charity has representatives in ports throughout the world.

So when you are thinking about charity this Christmas, remember the Merchant mariners who went a long way to saving us during the war, and now continue to bring us so many of the things we buy as well as taking us on holiday.

From: Rachel Taylor, Steep Lane, Sowerby.

WITH reference to Dennis Ayling’s letter, Merchant Navy Day has always been marked on September 3.

For the last four years, Seafarers UK has been campaigning to get the 
Merchant Navy’s Red Ensign flown from as many town halls, civic buildings as well as any where else that has a flag pole.

Whilst Leeds flew the Red Duster this year, I note that neither Thirsk or Sessay were on the list.

Perhaps Mr Ayling could get the council to amend this for next year?

I can also recommend he visits the Liverpool museum Western Approaches, which is based where all the Atlantic convoys were co-ordinated.

Post office closure risk

From: Wanda Maciuszko, Tennyson Avenue, Scarborough.

I WOULD like to alert your readers to the proposed closure of Aberdeen Walk Post Office in Scarborough. It is proposed to move the post office to WH Smith on Westborough. The consultation ends on December 28 and I would urge all your readers to make their views known. Details of how to respond are available at the post office.

The staff in the post office in Aberdeen Walk provide an excellent personal service which encompasses real care and concern for the needs of the community, particularly the older (among which I count myself) and vulnerable people.

Longer hours of opening do not equate automatically to a better service. The experience and knowledge of the present staff will be lost, as I doubt very much that there will be a wholesale transfer of all staff to the new premises.

My experiences in other areas of post offices situated in retail units show a poorer, more impersonal and less efficient service.

Please make your views known in the consultation process.

No snow for Christmas

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

PICTURES of “ideal” Christmases often seem to include snow. While children may welcome a dose of the white stuff, it by no means is so popular among adults.

For even the slightest dusting can cause traffic problems if it turns to ice, while pedestrians face hazardous pavements which are dangerous to the most vulnerable groups.

And of course on Christmas Day itself there are no buses, with taxi fares at a premium if you’re a non-driver.

So by all means look forward to December 25, but no snow please!

Paper lives up to its pledge

From: Canon Michael Storey, Healey Wood Road, Brighouse.

A SPLENDID article by the Editor appeared of The Yorkshire Post in Saturday’s edition.

I have been receiving The Yorkshire Post for the past 70 years and have always found that it lived up to the pledge made by the founder Griffith Wright in 1754, and so clearly set out in the Saturday Essay.

In summary, Mr Wright stated “whatever may usefully instruct or innocently amuse the reader will be suitable matter of intelligence for this newspaper”.Long may The Yorkshire Post be Yorkshire’s national newspaper.

Outlaw cruel slaughter

From: Aled Jones, Southcliffe Road, Bridlington.

IF Britain is so opposed to animal cruelty, why has it not felt the need to follow in the footsteps of Denmark and outlaw the religious slaughter of animals that have not been stunned first?

As a civilised society, we cannot stand meekly by while one section of the population causes barbaric suffering to animals.