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Democracy dies

REGARDING Sainbury’s, at last Wednesday’s planning meeting, Dorridge’s three ward councillors let down the 1,000+ constituents who did not want such a large store here by sitting on the fence and making out that the community was split down the middle.

REGARDING Sainbury’s, at last Wednesday’s planning meeting, Dorridge’s three ward councillors let down the 1,000+ constituents who did not want such a large store here by sitting on the fence and making out that the community was split down the middle.

It never was.

Every poll carried out indicated that a smaller store would have been universally welcomed. The letters opposed to this town-sized development hugely outnumbered those in favour. A victory for the developers. A defeat for democracy.

M Walker, Dorridge

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Let’s pull together

REGARDING the decision by Solihull planners over Sainsbury’s, it was good to see so many Dorridge residents at the Council meeting. As a supporter of the project, I feel now is the time for the DDRA, DROVS and residents of Dorridge to pull together in making certain that conditions put to Sainsbury’s and their contractors are adhered to. There will be disruption to the centre of Dorridge and timing of HGVs during demolition and construction must be outside school run times.

We must also continue to lobby our councillors, concerning the growth of commuter parking and its affect on roads around the station.

Now let us go forward together for a better Dorridge.

John Taverner via e-mail

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Bumper sum

ON behalf of the Solihull branch of the Royal British Legion may I thank all the residents of Solihull for their generous donations in support of this year’s Poppy Appeal, which realised a magnificent record-breaking total of £60,000.

Without your help we would be unable to continue our vital welfare and benevolent work in aid of our service personnel and their families.

The preparation and planning for the Poppy Appeal launch in November takes many months by a small, dedicated team of Legion members.

It is imperative that we maintain this momentum, and would welcome new members and offers of support. If you are interested in offering support please contact Mrs S.Mouzer on 0121 603 6266.

JA Hilliar, President of Solihull RBL

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Privatise it

IS Royal Mail fit for purpose?

This state-owned company is charged with delivering a universal postal service that is affordable and reliable. I reckon it’s failing on a number of counts.

Several traditional features of the letter post have disappeared in the last few years: the Sunday collection and the twice-a-day delivery, for instance.

And all this against a background of increases in the price of stamps.

The cost of a first class stamp has risen to 46p and there are plans to increase the price of a second class stamp by 50 per cent, would you believe.

Because of the reduction of daily letter deliveries, the one remaining delivery should surely be a premium service. It’s far from it.

Letters are reaching me at any old time of the day, certainly not first thing in the morning as they used to. Some arrive after 3 o’clock in the afternoon. This is a nonsense.

Although I concede part of the delivery may be junk mail, there are sometimes important letters which require a speedy response.

The planned privatisation of Royal Mail seems to have been been put on the back burner by the Government. Bring it forward as soon as possible, I say.

Peter Kennedy, Hampton-in-Arden

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Priorities all wrong

I agree with Pat Joyce who commented in last week’s paper that Centro are not fit for purpose (Letters).

I live on a part of Streets-brook Road that has had its one and only bus (No 3) removed and leaves us without a service into Birmingham city centre.

Our only service remaining is the part-time S11 which we can catch up to 2:52pm into Solihull but then cannot return home.

Streetsbrook Road is one of the main roads in and out of Solihull and one would think that it would be covered by a regular bus service, but sadly all we see at the moment is a high number of buses coming past displaying “Not in service”, which is insult to injury.

Even in these dire economic times, the Government should be encouraging people to use public transport, as roads and motorways would all benefit from reduced volume, but maybe they are dishonest enough to prefer things to stay as they are, in order to raise extra revenue from road tax and petrol duty.

Surprisingly however, the Government seem quite enthusiastic towards spending well in excess of £28 billion to provide a quicker HS2 rail service for a few business men to and from London. What a betrayal for us local commuters!

Pete Thorp, Solihull

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Another bill to pay

Under the terms of the Lisbon Treaty, the West Midlands have now been appointed with a seventh MEP, Conservative Anthea McIntyre.

This unelected official will cost the UK tax payer around £2.1 million per year whilst she is in office. If we were forced to have another MEP, surely it would have made more sense to install them at the next EU elections in 2014, or to hold an election at a convenient time i.e. at the May local elections.

The last thing we need in a time of austerity and cuts to public services is another unelected official putting a strain on national finances.

After being denied a referendum on our membership of the EU, this is another blow to this great nation’s democracy.

Nikki Sinclaire, Independent MEP for the West Midlands

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Delivering chaos

I AM a postman that works at Solihull delivery office and I am writing to you to let you know of the impending chaos that will happen with the mail over the Christmas period.

Many of you will have noticed that the way your mail is being delivered has changed.

Postmen using trolleys and two postmen in a van. This way of working is slowing down the postman trying to perform a service to our customers to such a case that a lot of Solihull residents are only getting mail every other day.

This is happening now before the Christmas rush has started. So in the next three weeks this is going to get an awful lot worse.

So take my advice, post early and tell family and friends who will be sending items to Solihull to do it soon or it will be arriving in January!

Name and address supplied

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Jobs for the boys

The wheels seem to be coming off the HS2 bandwagon, now the new Secretary of State has ordered HS2 Ltd back to the drawing board on one section of the line. This delay will compound the impact of the Transport Select Committee’s report, which challenged the project’s basic assumptions.

One of these assumptions was that amenity, landscape, and wildlife had zero monetary value. Well if spending £500 million of taxpayers’ money is justified to protect a short length of the Chilterns, how much more should be found to save the inhabitants of Chelmsley Wood, and communities to the south, from the monstrous intrusion and disturbance the Government plans to inflict?

What price should be put on protecting our fields, our rural jobs, our landscape, our wetlands, our trees, and our wildlife habitat?

And to round it off, a passenger survey has found that peak hour trains on the WCML are only 56 per cent full - and next year, each train gets two extra carriages!

Taxpayers can try holding onto their wallets, but it won’t stop HS2 consultants getting the thick end of a billion pounds in this parliament. Jobs for the masses or jobs for the boys?

Richard Lloyd, chairman

Heart of England High Speed Railway Action Group

(www.hhag.org.uk)

 

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