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Election about Brexit

This General Election is all about Brexit. This is a chance for the country to vote again on whether we should leave the EU.

The positions of all the parties is now clear. What is not clear is how Britain’s first past the post voting system will deal with the four parties asking for our votes. The most united side will win. If either side splits the vote they have no chance of winning. The side that will win is the one where a voting pact is agreed and the vote is not split.

Steve Halden, Beaufort Green

Speeding figures flawed

I saw your article (SA, October 25) “signs not enough to make crossing safer.”

I note your quoted Swindon Council’s statement “traffic surveys were carried out on Hay Lane in both directions indicating good compliance with the speed limit.” This is simply not true. Traffic surveys were conducted but the analysis and conclusion made by Swindon Council is severely flawed.

I have acquired the original data of the survey from Swindon Council under the freedom of information act, the data clearly shows significant non-compliance.The survey recorded the speed and time of every vehicle approaching the crossing at a point 50 metres from the crossing on each side.

The number of vehicles speeding as they approach the crossing over a 7 day period is 1069, if the week of the survey was a typical that equates to 55,558 vehicle per year breaking the speed limit at speeds of up to 51 MPH. I think this is significant non-compliance, a speeding problem which must be addressed or one day there will probably be a fatality.

I would be very happy to meet council officers to be challenged and explain why I think their analysis and conclusion is wrong.

Swindon Council stated to me “the mean average speed is 29.5MPH so there is not a speeding problem”.

Using mean average is the flaw, I think the council believes that it means most vehicle travel at 29.5 but that is not true. The calculated mean average includes many vehicles travelling slow to turn into Sleaford close or stop for buses or even stop at the crossing it, therefore follows that if the mean average is 29.5 there are many cars speeding.

The data in the survey proves this, using mean average as a compliance indicator is ludicrous.The original survey data that I acquired from the council, shows the actual unadulterated figures that add up to 55,558 vehicles speeding per year. Even if we exclude vehicle speeding in the 36MPH band there are 11,500 speeding in the 41,46 and 51 MPH bands.

Rodney Birks, Grange Park

Don’t feed ducks bread

There is no confusion about feeding bread to ducks. Don’t do it! It is bad for ducks and bad for the environment. This ought to be taught to young children in schools to educate their parents.

Bread has a very low nutritional value.

As with bread, biscuits, breakfast cereal and sweets cause ducks to feel full up, leading to bloating.

In young ducks it can cause Angel wing, which prevents proper wing growth hampering or preventing flight.Other feeding no-nos are popcorn, nuts, chocolate, citrus fruit, avocados and onions.

However,chosen wisely, not all bread is bad. Whole grain bread with no preservatives, crumbled, is ideal.

Feed chopped or shredded greens including cabbage, chard, lettuce and all kinds of squash. Cooked or grated root vegetables such as sweet potatoes, beets, turnips, carrots, radishes and parsnips are also nutritious treats.

Henry Smith, Peatmoor

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