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Respecting opinions

When I read the letters about climate change and the varying reasons for it uttered by various writers, I wonder why these ‘experts’ don’t call a meeting between themselves to see if they can come up with a solution based upon the appraisal of their expertise.

I note in the letters and comments sections, people are very keen to say that they are right and others are wrong. This has always been a bone of contention for me.

Everyone has an opinion, right or wrong – let us respect that.

Many of my letters in the past have contained various aspects of controversy but I have my opinion on many things and will beg to differ, no matter what the ‘experts’ on many subjects say. They may sway my opinion if the response is logical but they will only make me stronger by saying directly, ‘Chris Gleed is wrong’!

As a ex-road safety practitioner with AIRSO plus, being an advanced driver and observer with IamRoadSmart, plus RoSPA advanced drivers and riders Gold holder, I previously attended an area board meeting with Wiltshire Council. I sat at a table with the other highways ‘experts’, police and fire service and we were asked what priorities we should give in our areas of knowledge.

I stated: “Many more people are affected by vehicle pollution than are killed in crashes on our roads, so we must look at the aspects of ‘cleaner air’.”

That was deemed not to be a priority at the time (about 2-3 years ago) and now it has been proved to be sound advice, according to many. I didn’t tell people that they were wrong, I said that I thought I have a valid point that will be brought to the fore in the future. Hmm!

Chris Gleed, Proud Close, Purton

Safety audit needed

Guide Dogs are supporting your recent article ‘More needs to be done to help Swindon’s blind population’ (SA, August 3).

Shared spaces are disorienting and dangerous for people with sight loss, who rely on cues such as kerbs and controlled crossings to get around and cross the road safely. Guide dogs struggle to assist their owners on shared spaces because they are trained to stop at the kerb to avoid taking their owners into the road.

Research from University College London shows that people with sight loss cannot reliably detect kerbs under 60mm in height. We believe the ones on Regent Circus are 25mm.

The government has called for local councils to pause new shared space schemes because of concerns about the impact on disabled people. We are calling for all existing shared spaces to receive a road safety audit taking the needs of people with sight loss into account.

Katie Gain, Engagement officer, Guide Dogs

Selling us down the river

An email arrived from Boris Johnson which included the words ‘the undemocratic backstop’. Is this part of Johnson’s £138 million advertising campaign to sell no-deal?

The backstop was put forward by this same government and painstakingly negotiated with all all 27 EU partners. Johnson backed it himself, as did my MP, Robert Buckland.

How is that ‘undemocratic’?

This is just blatant brainwashing.

If something needs hundreds of millions spent and blatant propaganda techniques to sell, it can’t be very good for us.

Johnson is selling us down the river, and Robert Buckland is paddling with him as fast as he can. How depressing that both our prime minister and our MP are willing to use this kind of doublespeak on the population. Boris Johnson’s £138m ministry of truth!

Steve Rouse, Wroughton

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