I EMPATHISE with remarks made by the Thurstonland resident in Mailbag on October 27 about the wind turbine application in the village, and with objections to wind turbines in general.
However I believe that he/she may just as well have written their letter as a Wish List to Father Christmas and sent it up the chimney, so impervious are Kirklees Planning Committee members to the wishes of the people who elected them.
I know we cannot rely on the committee to read the Letters to the Editor in the Examiner, but have they not read the reasons for objecting to the turbines in the many letters sent to them in the early stages of the planning application?
If not, and the number of letters are presented to them just as a number, then surely they have to listen to the case officer, who will have read them and assimilated the information and made a professional judgement in his recommendation.
Officers must be asking themselves why they spend precious time and effort in making recommendations when they are overruled by a show of hands at the committee stage.
The same could be said for the views expressed by the conservation officer.
I am seriously coming to the conclusion that there is a league table within local government for the number of approvals for wind turbines and come hell or high water, Kirklees Council is determined to be top of it. I cannot see any other reason for them consistently contravening the wishes of its electorate and possibly more importantly, its own officers.
I invite the chairman of Kirklees Planning Committee to respond to this letter, via this same Examiner Mailbag, to explain their reasons for blighting our beautiful countryside with wind turbines.
Please do not say it is because wind turbines are efficient or sustainable, because they are not.
Way the wind’s blowing
UNLIKE the anonymous ‘Resident’ of Thurstonland, (Letters, Examiner October 27) I am happy to see the erection of two small wind turbines within 400 metres of my home – which I believe to be the nearest listed building to the turbine site.
The effect on listed buildings was stated to be one of the expressed concerns of the planning department.
The village has about 200 houses and from its residents only two villagers other than the applicants turned up to air their views at Dewsbury Town Hall. This is not indicative of ‘a lot of worry within the village’ as Resident suggests.
In Resident’s letter, the applicant is described as commercial and money-making. Farming is a commercial enterprise. However small the farm and farmers must ‘think outside the box’ for their businesses to survive.
Our Resident is upset that we are ‘at the whim of elected officials with no expertise’. This must then be the case for every decision that councillors make – they are members of the public not expected or required to have expertise, but to research the facts and listen to the people they represent.
In this case that is exactly what they did, making a site visit and weighing up the pros and cons.
Their decision was made, taking all the evidence they had into consideration, but since the decision, some opponents have tried, and continue to try, to score political points and criticise the system and those opposing their views.
It is surely time to come to terms with the decision and graciously accept that this is the route we have to take for the conservation of our green belt – keeping the farm working as opposed to the other possibilities should it fail.
David C Jones
IN reply to the Examiner article on the demolition of the caretaker’s bungalow at Honley Junior School, as a parent of two children at the school I am very pleased to see it go.
It has been an eyesore for the last few years, giving a very negative image of the school. I know that plenty of ideas for use of the bungalow were put forward but were just not practical.
To have it converted for private use would mean that unchecked people would be able to enter school grounds during school hours, obviously not safe for the children.
To change access to Jagger Lane would be pricey, as the road and the bungalow grounds are on very different levels. As for saying there is plenty of parking, the un-named gentleman quoted (Examiner, October 28) has obviously never tried to park there during school hours.
There is only one strip of parking space down the drive which is often filled by teachers’ cars, leaving very little space for parents’ or school visitors’ cars.
The grounds around the school have been massively improved by the caretaker, teachers and children during out of school clubs. Now this eyesore has finally gone the whole school will look better.
Let the people decide
AFTER a nightshift in the Eurosweetie factory, the EU (or rather its elitist Eurozone sub-group) has done what it does best. It has presented the world with yet another bubbling cauldron of fudge.
There are wish-lists, aspirations and visions for the future, but nothing concrete except a desire to kick the can further along the road.
It is increasingly clear that there are only two possible solutions for the Eurozone crisis: dismantle the currency in as orderly a manner as possible, or enforce political, fiscal and economic union on its members. Neither is as palatable as fudge, but a decision must be made. And soon.
I salute our local Conservative MPs, Messrs McCartney, Whittaker and Reevell, for their principled stand in favour of democracy, and I hope that they keep the faith.
It is increasingly vital that we, the people, are granted a referendum on the EU. This would allow the pros and cons of our continued membership of the EU to be discussed and argued in public, and then permit the population to make an informed decision about the economic, social and political future of ‘Great’ Britain.
My personal position on the EU is no secret – I think it is undemocratic and unhelpful to say the least – but staying in or leaving is not the issue here. What is in question is who should decide.
The fact is that the former EEC (‘Common Market’) has little in common with today’s much larger EU, which has the potential to change our society forever.
No politician has a mandate to eradicate 1,000 years of our history as an independent state, nor to gamble with our future.
That decision should be for the people, and they alone, to make in a referendum.
WE are told that one in three hospitals are struggling to meet the standards the law says people expect.
Why are our hospitals in this mess? I have to say this is because we have no matrons. Also the biggest fault of all is letting five and six visitors to one bed with children sitting on the beds. Who knows what may be under their shoes?
The ruling should be two visitors only!
I WOULD like to thank both the bus driver and whoever it was that handed my handbag in to the bus driver that I left on the 328 (Crosland Moor area) at 13.10pm on Friday, October 28.
I am ever so grateful. I had cash and cards in my purse but nothing was taken. This proves there are some good citizens out there.
ŠRooted in culture
WHEN I was younger, and times were hard for us,ŠI managed to persuade my youngest so to have a turnip lantern instead of a pumpkin lantern.
As a careful, financially challenged, Yorkshire man I brought it out year after year and saved us money.
Years later, whilstŠI was doing some research on lanterns, for teaching history in school, I discovered that the Irish had used turnips as lanterns to ward off the devil. When the Irish emigrated to America, they used pumpkins because turnips were not available.
Hence, unknowingly, I had reconnected with my roots. Unsurprisingly said son still calls me Ebeneezer tight fist and does not think using a turnip can be classed as a vital part of our cultural heritage, even if it is a lot cheaper.