Letters to the Mercury - 4 November 2011

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Have your say

Unite to stop save day centre

May I express my sadness on hearing of the proposed closure of Stamford Day Care Centre.

Disabled and vulnerable people need this highly regarded facility.

A personal budget is useless unless you can spend it profitably.

A familiar, caring institution is irreplaceable.

We should collectively urge Lincolnshire County Council to think again.

Christine Pearce

(Councillor, Deeping St James Parish Council) Bridge Street, Deeping St James

The day care centre is a vital resource and should not even be considered for closure.

It provides invaluable respite for those people who are caring for relatives 24 hours a day.

Without the day care centre, many more people would need full-time care, at a huge cost to the tax payer, as their relatives would not eventually be able to cope without a break in the week to recharge their batteries.

The day care centre is vital to the town to so many people. Please keep it open.

Tracy MeltON

Casterton Road Stamford

Chance to show you care

EACH year, at remembrance time the council of Market Deeping opens a garden of remembrance on Riverside Park.

We invite members of our community to plant a cross, a remembrance cross, as a memorial to a life lost in service to show that we will never forget the sacrifice made by so many young and not so young men and women on our behalf.

Afghanistan continually reminds us of what we owe to our heroes, but of course our debt extends to those who lost their lives in all wars.

We ask that members of the public take the opportunity to show they do care and remember, by planting a cross in our garden of remembrance.

By so doing you will not only be remembering but by buying your cross you will be contributing to the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal.

The garden will be opened by a simple ceremony on Sunday and will remain open for two weeks. Crosses may be planted on that day and throughout the two weeks of opening. The people of Wootton Bassett were able to show their respects to the fallen by their unique display of homage, let’s show ours by a massive planting of crosses to show that “We will remember them”.

REG Howard

Deputy mayor of Market Deeping, Kesteven Drive

Market Deeping

Why villagers are so angry

Your article headlined Village anger as homes get roof tiles from Spain (Mercury, October 21) omits important background explaining why villagers are so incensed.

David Oliver, East Northamptonshire District Council’s chief executive, says it is not appropriate to reverse his council’s decision to allow the blue/black slates because it has agreed their use with the developer, GP Construction of Langtoft, after fully considering the issues.

The only reason given is that natural materials are preferred over artificial ones. The point is that the council’s decision is inconsistent with a previous council local decision and contradicts the council’s own professed interest in protecting our traditional and distinctive buildings and environment.

In correspondence Mr Oliver is unable or unwilling to give detailed reasoning.

In 2007 his council, supported by Collyweston Parish Council, rejected the original application because the buildings were too large for the site and out of keeping with adjacent buildings.

The inspector on appeal overturned the decision but stated that the construction materials must be in keeping with the environment.

The inspector and the council were aware that replica Collyweston slates were to be used. Moreover the council had previously stipulated that replica Collyweston slates were the most appropriate roofing materials for development if natural Collyweston slates were not available.

These replicas have similar colouring to natural slates and unlike the Spanish ones are properly coursed (size decreasing towards the top of the roof).

Without consulting the parish council, the district council subsequently agreed that blue/black slates could be used instead of the replica ones.

The cost of laying blue/black slates from China or Spain is about one third of the cost of laying coursed replica slates. The Spanish slates are completely out-of-character with the roofs of surrounding buildings and their colour considerably more visually intrusive than replica slates.

The council has thereby ensured that these houses are more prominent and out of keeping than they would have been if replica slates had been used. This is obviously inconsistent with the council’s argumentation in its 2007 rejection.

Mr Oliver stands by the decision rather than accepting responsibility for the mistake and taking action to prevent further eyesores being built in Collyweston.

At the very least the council and JP Construction should ensure that the roof of the second house currently being built has replica Collyweston slates on it.

To allow otherwise will demonstrate that neither of them are genuinely interested in protecting the integrity of our village and its traditional buildings.

Richard Cooper

High Street

Collyweston

RSPCA plea over budgie

May I, through the Mercury, ask anyone who witnessed the man dumping the budgie in the bin lorry in the Cattle Market car park in Stamford, (Letters, last week), contact me regarding this.

Under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 (section 4), anyone found guilty of causing suffering to an animal, whether by actually causing that suffering, or if the suffering is left untreated by failure to provide treatment for it, may be guilty of an offence.

Also under section 9, anyone failing in their duty of care for an animal, by not providing a correct environment, or protecting the animal from pain, suffering, injury, or disease, may also be guilty of an offence.

Callously dumping the budgie in the bin, to be crushed, potentially slowly, could obviously fall foul of both of these points.

I would also like to find out what happened to the budgie since its rescue.

Anyone with any information can contact the RSPCA in confidence on 03001234999, and leave a message for me there, or leave any details through the Mercury, who I’m sure would be happy to help.

Justin Stubbs

RSPCA inspector Stamford

Too many taxis in town

FURTHER to the article (Mercury, October 21) on taxis in Stamford, there are a few points I would like to make. I have been licensed to drive a taxi in the Stamford area for the last six years and although Mr Siddique has made his view on the ranking situation for vehicles very clear, he has failed to address the underlying problem.

The licensing authority is not legally obliged to provide taxi ranks within its district.

In the last six years we have seen a substantial increase in the number of vehicles that South Kesteven District Council has licensed and although Mr Brumfield, from Lincolnshire County Council, states that there has been an increase in space made available, we are at a loss as to where those spaces are.

Ranking spaces were lost with the development of Sheep Market and vehicles are no longer allowed to rank in the square and the space we used outside Tesco has now been designated disabled parking.

The only official ranks within Stamford are those in Broad Street and the disused rank in St Mary’s Hill, which is only available at weekends and late at night, and in a location which has no custom any longer since the closure of Quayhole Kate’s.

The underlying problem rests with the district council licensing more and more vehicles that are not required or needed.

The taxi community have called on the council a number of times to limit numbers and this has been refused. A licensing authority has the ability to put a limit on vehicle numbers, should it be proved that there is no unmet demand.

South Kesteven has been asked to look into a survey to prove this point and to put a temporary stop on licences until a verdict has been come to. We have received no response.

While vehicles continue to be licensed with no restraint, the situation will continue to deteriorate; new taxis and drivers are arriving every week.

The residents and businesses of Stamford need to make their opinions known to both the town and district councils, to stop this situation getting any worse, and call for a full stop on issuing these licences.

Isn’t it about time that we had a say in how things progressed in our town, since we have to live with the consequences? CHARLOTTE SMITH

Masterton Road, Stamford

More letters – page 14