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Pick up this litter

AS A regular dog walker in the area. I’m shocked at the lack of respect shown to our neighbourhoods, in particular green spaces.

On Sunday I took my usual walk around fields in Shurnhold, Melksham. It was littered with rubbish. No fouling signs were also ignored with an array of dog faeces also left.

The previous day on Box Recreation ground I also lost count the amount of tin cans and food rubbish just tossed down without a care in the world. This is despite rubbish bins being nearby. Box village itself has seen its fair share of graffiti too lately.

I’m well aware local Councils are short of funds after being in austerity for over 10 years. However, surely as locals we could take more responsibility for our surroundings rather than wait for others to do something?

If out walking in the area and you see rubbish on the ground, perhaps pick it up like myself and put it in the nearest bin. It might not seem much at first, but if we all did this then over time we may begin to see the benefits. It may even inspire our future generation to do the same too.

Mr D Mcloughlin, Queens Square, Box

Town needs a boost

CALNE lacks modern retail outlets found in surrounding modern towns of similar size (eg. Melksham, Devizes.) Calne’s 23,000 inhabitants (and those in outlying towns and villages) must travel North Wiltshire’s un-modernised roads to reach a: Garden Centre, DIY Catalogue Store (eg. Screwfix, Toolstation,) DIY Store (eg. B&Q, Wickes,) New Entrant Supermarket (eg. Lidl, Aldi,) Dedicated: Phone Store, Book Store, Butchers, Kitchen Store, Shoe Repairers, Shoe Shop.

There are many other sectors where Calne as such has a limited offering and although the correct product may be found, disappointment, uncompetitive pricing or a 3 day wait would be more likely.

To reach both town centre and and out-of-town stores residents travel mainly by car, which can be capable of nearly 8 miles an hour on local roads despite a never-ending rota of lengthy road works/closures and traffic calming schemes.

Modern assets are often situated on the extreme far side of towns (where modern/ unimpeded transport to/ from Trowbridge is allowed.) Car travel/ parking outside the Trunk Road A350 is now seen as ugly, noisy and polluting and is therefore unwanted and blocked where possible.

Please tell me someone in authority is asking how Calne can quickly attract a competitive retail platform, with the considerable, environmental, transport, social and economic benefits that would bring. Otherwise, with a growing population, diminishing assets and decaying infrastructure the future looks lifestyle limiting.

Oliver Rawle, The Green, Calne

We’re to blame too

THE alarmist narrative of the green lobby in Marlborough has been going into overdrive over the fires in the Amazon.

Celebrities and other high profile figures have sent in pictures of forests burning : many of these pictures turned out to be from previous years and in some cases not of the Amazon at all.

It seems to have escaped notice that these fires occur every year and are seen as a way of reinstating the fertility of the soil in already cleared areas. Many of the areas being burned had already been cleared to grow the “bio-fuel” of palm oil to power our cars.

Our western leaders take a simplistic view of the problems and see fit to lecture the leaders of developing nations. “Neo-colonial” attitudes come to mind.

Talking of burning wood; in the case of the UK our “green” policies are causing large areas of woodland to be cut down in the USA (Georgia), converted into wood pellets and then shipped by the millions of tons across the Atlantic to be burnt in the Drax power station of Yorkshire. Hardly a very green way to generate electricity.

David Chandler, Alma Place, Marlborough

Hunting for history

I AM completing a family history on the Sutton family of Chirton. George Sutton, my great-great-great grandfather, who came to NYC, NY, USA at the turn of the19th century, was a ships captain and merchant in NYC, and became a millionaire.

I would like to know if there are any Suttons or Maidments (my mother’s family) still living in the area? I am in contact with the Wiltshire Family and Historical Society. Thank you.

William B. Secor, Ph.D, 321 Second Street, Brandon, Florida, 33511, USA

Actions not words

FOR those of us working in frontline mental health services it is extremely worrying to see a rise in suicide rates in the UK for the first time in five years.

According to figures published recently by the Office for National Statistics, there were a total of 6,507 suicides registered by coroners in the UK last year; that is equivalent to 11.2 per 100,000 people - up 11.8 per cent on the previous year.

In 2018,the South West had a suicide rate of 17.7 per 100,000 population for males and 5.7 per 100,000 for females.

Every suicide is a tragedy and devastating for families and friends; however, suicide is often preventable and more must be done to make sure this increase is not the beginning of a more sinister trend.

Demand for mental health care has been rapidly rising for a number years, but frontline services have not seen the investment so vitally needed in order to keep pace.

It is shameful that in the 21st Century patients are being failed by reduced services and longer waits for treatments, while frontline mental health staff continue to placed under more and more pressure.

This situation is not tenable for much longer.

While there has been some recent focus on suicide prevention strategies, there must be a greater focus on improving public mental health in the UK, with more investment for local services. A life-course approach is required, ensuring support for mental health during childhood, education, employment and into later life.

It must now finally be time for kind words from health leaders to become actions - parity of resources and care, not of esteem.

Dr Andrew Molodynski, BMA consultants committee mental health lead , British Medical Association, Tavistock Square, London

Go for an election

THE Prime Minister wishes to fulfil the mandate of the 2016 referendum by taking our country out of the EU by October 31st , ideally with an improved withdrawal agreement. To achieve this he must convince the EU leaders to agree to an agreement that can be approved by parliament.

The EU refuse to take him seriously, as they know he has no parliamentary majority and that the opposition will vote down any deal he brings back. To resolve this impasse the prime minister has offered the country a general election on October 15th. This is two days before the crucial EU leader summit on October 17th.

If the Conservatives win a majority the PM will have won a popular mandate for his approach to Brexit. If he loses he is history and a new coalition prime minster will have the opportunity to represent the UK at the October 17th summit and press the case for an extension of article 50 to allow time for a second referendum. What a fantastic opportunity for the “peoples vote” that Remainers have been calling for since the 2016 result!

I am therefore rather surprised that all of the opposition parties have resisted this call for a general election. In my view I can only conclude that they are afraid the people will vote the wrong way again and elect a leader who will honour the 2016 result.

By their actions Messrs Corbyn, Swinson et al prove to this voter that it is they that are profoundly undemocratic and not the prime minister. For the sake of our country I pray.

Graham Carroll, Maple Close, Calne

What has the EU done for us?

ALL your Remain correspondents in the very unbalanced ‘Letters’ 5th September really need to take a deep breath and actually look at the facts. Proroguing is usually an annual event taken for the very good reason of setting out the Government business objectives for the next session of Parliament which are introduced in the Queen’s Speech.

We have been denied this for three years. And for John Major to join the anti-Leave campaign’s malicious court action against it is laughable; he is the one who used that very tool to specifically prevent the release of a report into the Cash for Questions scandal.

The real coup is being undertaken by the Labour Party in connivance with the other minority parties and of course the renegades. They protest that the referendum was won by lies yet have no answer to the fact that the then Government’s position was one of misleading and misinformation – not least via the legally questionable £9.5M Remain propaganda leaflet that was sent to every household in the country. ‘The facts’ it said, with no facts included but only Project Fear scaremongering.

Apart from allowing us to spend our own money on projects in the UK that the EU tell us to and taking the cream off the top, what has the EU done for us? I’m not talking about immigration, just all the jobs that have left our shores thanks to EU Regional Development grants, like Ford Transit production moving to Poland leaving a large factory next to the motorway near Southampton.

Most of the benefits claimed by Remain were actually already in place when we joined and the EEC/EU based their versions on ours – such as legal entitlement to holidays, sick pay, etc.

We were joined into the EEC without any consultation with the public, and lied to by Heath that the EEC had no political union ambitions during the 1975 stay-or-go referendum. So why do the Remain camp believe that the last referendum was unfair or unacceptable, especially as the Remain fake news horror stories have mostly been debunked?

As for Helen Belcher’s disingenuous remark that the prorogation could easily have coincided with recesses already planned, well it IS! The Party Conference recess is what it coincides with, with just 4 days addition. Perhaps if all the Europhile MPs thought Brexit was so important, they should have not voted themselves a summer recess when they all went off on their holidays. And they have had 3.5 YEARS already to sort this issue.

Steve Perry, Hardens Mead, Chippenham

‘Tribal’ politicians

IN reply to last weeks letters from a couple of Lib-dem Prospective M.P. Candidates, it was interesting to hear how committed to democracy they are, maybe they are suffering a little from memory loss as back in 2016 we had a referendum which asked our politicians to leave the E.U. Maybe 17.5 million people can be brushed aside by the Lib-Dems but our local M.Ps including Michelle Donelan and James Gray are simply trying to carry out the mandate given to them by the referendum three years ago.

The Lib-Dems want another referendum because they say things have changed since the last one, yes things always change in Politics, society and the Economy, that’s no reason to keep putting the same question to the British people regarding leaving the E.U. Do the Lib-Dems want best out of three or even five before they get what they want and that’s to stay under E.U. Control.

There is only one answer to this, let’s let the people of this Country decide with a General Election, stop the Party Political game playing on all sides and lets have a real debate with real people known as the electorate not just 650 tribal Politicians.

David Poole, Rowden Hill, Chippenham

Boris as Mr Brexit

I SEE that the regular (almost always weekly) contributors are yet again trying to paint the legitimate aim of the British Government in it’s pursuit of fulfilling the result of the 2016 referendum on European Union membership, which was to leave, as some kind of plot against the people.

Let’s hear no nonsense about ‘purely advisory referendum, the then PM David Cameron confirmed in the £9.5 Leaflet sent to every household in the country that the government would respect the result and carry out the wishes of the people.

Indeed in the 2017 General Election the two main parties Labour and Conservative included in their manifestos the commitment to take the country out of the EU.

I wonder what’s wrong with Boris Johnson going down as Mr Brexit if he follows the will of the majority and takes this country out of the EU, I wonder why Helen Belcher and John Boaler asks is no deal worth it or if it legitimate of course it is because it would have delivered an exit to the EU.

That’s what the majority of the House of Commons voted for when Article 50 was passed by a vast majority, which stated we left either with a deal or no deal by the 31st March 2019. Boris Johnson never hijacked Parliament by getting the Queen to the proroguing of Parliament, both Labour and Conservative Administrations have done this often.

Cutting to the chase, what’s happening is that any coups being attempted are in fact initiated by the Liberal Democrats, Plaid, The Greens and The SNP along with Jeremy Corbyn.

We must remember that of the above parties, Jo Swinson and Caroline Lucas who have both been tirelessly campaigning for a second referendum have both said they won’t accept the result if it’s not what they want, two real democrats there? Nicola Sturgeon will join any campaign if it gives her the dream of Scottish Independence.

It’s clear that those who the British people didn’t fancy enough to govern the country are now happy ruin Parliament in their zeal to dictate to those people, us, that we must obey their very blinkered views.

Stuart Eels, John Aubrey Close, Yatton Keynell, Chippenham

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