YP Letters: Time to bring rail dispute to an end

From: Bob Watson, Baildon.

Northern rail services are again in the spotlight.
Northern rail services are again in the spotlight.

THE massive inconvenience caused by the RMT strikes on Northern’s rail services continues unabated, with the withdrawal of labour on every Saturday in September (The Yorkshire Post, September 8).

It really is time that this issue was put to bed once and for all, and I have to wonder whether Northern has fully considered the wishes of its customers.

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The initial disagreement seemed to centre on who closed the doors, the drivers or the guards. Passengers, I suspect, couldn’t care less as long as whatever was agreed was deemed to be safe. There does seem to be an argument that it would be better for the drivers to do so, to enable the guards to concentrate on other matters.

The bigger issue now appears to be having guards on all trains, which is a safety issue according to the RMT.

I think that all rail travellers would wish there to be a guard on every train wherever possible, both for the safety of passengers and to ensure that all have suitable tickets.

However, there can be the odd situation when a guard is not available, and in such circumstances it is surely better for all concerned for the train to be allowed to run rather than being cancelled.

Perhaps Northern and the RMT could outline their thoughts in this regard, hopefully with the interests of their customers being at the forefront of them.

Certainly someone needs to be knocking heads together to end this longstanding dispute, which is now totally out of hand.

From: ME Wright, Harrogate.

LIKE David Behrens, I couldn’t squeeze a tear for TSB’s deposed Paul Pester and his many-zeros pay-off (The Yorkshire Post, September 8), but this is only the latest obscenity involving the supposed non-pareils of the upper echelons.

There is certainly a lack of falling railway heads, at both boardroom and political level. Is this really a throwback to underfunded British Rail, or due to Westminster’s obsession with giving number-crunchers the last word on everything outside London?

Months back, some distant suit informed us that “they” were looking into the Stygian depths of the privateers’ ticketing morass. Nothing’s happened and so it goes on – if we dare to buy a ticket and board a train on the same day, we are ripped off. Of course, we can glue ourselves to a screen, trawling for remote cut-price deals which suit Pepsirail plc rather than us. The Beano is more entertaining, so I tend to use the car.

From: Paul Walters, Upperthorpe, Sheffield.

REGARDING the 52 bus route in Sheffield where Stagecoach is withdrawing daytime journeys between Crookes and Hillsborough, I was rather puzzled at comments from Labour councillors condemning the withdrawal of these services.

Opposition parties have been calling for London-style quality contracts for Sheffield buses for the past two decades, constantly ignored by Labour.

Cook and the polar bear

From: Alan Coleman, Canal Lane, Lofthouse, Wakefield.

REGARDING the letters written by two ladies about the polar bear sculpture (The Yorkshire Post, September 8).

James Cook made three voyages, during the third one he discovered Hawaii. Cook’s orders from the Admiralty were to find a way around North America through the North West Passage.

He sailed towards the north west Pacific coast of America, Cook sailed far enough North to enter the Arctic through the Bering Strait but failed to find any trace of the passage.

It is not recorded if Cook had seen any polar bears but he was certainly at the correct latitude to have done so.

Cook returned to Hawaii and was killed by the islanders in a dispute over timber to repair his ship’s mast. In my opinion he was the finest cartographer of all time and a great Yorkshireman.

Stresses of policing today

From: Peter Hyde, Driffield.

LET me make it clear, I am not in any way decrying today’s police officers, I would find it very difficult to serve in today’s era of the service.

Perhaps I am a fortunate man or perhaps things have changed, but during 30 years service I dealt some of the most horrific incidents.

Yet I never felt the need to go off duty with stress. Yes, on occasions I went home and shed tears when a child was injured or killed but was always able to do duty afterwards.

I can only think that people are more sensitive these days or the lack of staff and manning levels are making it impossible for officers to cope with the demands put upon them.

The fact that, due to the Government’s cuts, they no longer have the time to make contact and regain the respect of the public they serve cannot help. The many hours of time lost through such sickness can, in my opinion, be laid at the door of the Government in general and Theresa May in particular.

‘River Humber’ doesn’t exist

From: Michael J Robinson, Berry Brow, Huddersfield.

MONDAY’S My Picture Post was headed “A view of the River Humber” (The Yorkshire Post, September 10).

There is no such thing as a river Humber. It is an estuary into which flow such rivers as the river Hull, the river Aire, the river Derwent, the river Don and the river Trent.

Look North?

From: Hilary Andrews, Nursery Lane, Leeds.

THE BBC have to find a replacement for Chris Evans with Sara Cox being the front runner. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if they considered regional talent?