LOOKING at the financial crisis as an ordinary citizen, there seem to be two ways of approaching the challenges we face.

You can take decisions and implement them quickly. This way, you might well start to solve your financial problems straight away. But by acting so rashly you remove the option of being able to plan for changes.

This is what is happening right now to people who deliver public services as cuts are imposed. People are losing their jobs before there’s time to consider alternatives and maximise the natural wastage of people retiring, moving to other jobs etc.

Or you can plan for changes that have to be made in the medium to longer term.

True, you don’t save money quickly. But you do avoid large numbers of people losing their jobs, facing financial insecurity and having to go onto benefits.

People have time to consider their options, retrain if necessary and move to new employment without the need to become unemployed.

I’ve followed the Conservative-led government’s approach to the economy closely and watched in disbelief as decisions are made that have short term benefits but which will cause untold long term harm to thousands of families in Huddersfield.

Already unemployment is rising, inflation is rising and taxes are rising. That’s a pretty toxic combination for us ordinary citizens and consumers to deal with.

On the other hand, last week I attended a meeting to discuss the new Local Government Framework for Kirklees. I was pleased to see that there was a detailed plan for long term job creation for the area; looking at changing demographics and working out how to create the maximum number of new jobs for local people and to make sure there are enough houses for us all in 10 or 20 years’ time.

Long term planning over short term reaction? Well as someone who’s faced the reality of redundancy first hand in recent weeks I know which option I prefer.

Unemployment is never a price worth paying. Jobs should always be the priority so that people can pay tax and contribute to society. I fear the short term policies of the Conservative-Liberal coalition will leave us with a heavy price to pay in the long term.

Jo Coles


Seeking contentment

READING the letter from Stan Solomons (Saturday January 29) about being content, got me thinking about what someone once told me.

Seventy years ago I was apprentice to a firm of electrical engineers at the princely sum 10 shillings and one penny a week (I never knew why the penny).

After one year I was called into the office and the boss told me that I was getting a raise in salary of five shillings.

He then asked me if I was satisfied to which I said: “Yes, sir.”

He then said: “Look son, you have a long time ahead of you so just take note of what I am saying. Don’t be satisfied so easy, always try for something better in life and that is the way to reach contentment.”

I’m still never satisfied and still looking for contentment.



Bad attitude

I WONDER if Barry Sheerman will condone the fiddling of expenses by a former Tory peer who fiddled the system to a tune of £11,000.

These are people who make our laws and seem to think they can get away by sheltering under the umbrella of the privilege system.

I think Barry Sheerman made a bad error of judgement in defending a friend who was convicted of stealing from the public purse.

No wonder this country is in dire straits when our MPs have attitudes like that.



Bomb in the river

I READ the Examiner article about the bomb at Kings Mill, on the island. I was fire-watching at the time a little up river.

My friend and I heard it come down and remember the problems they had getting it up above ground.

They later put it in the Market Place for the war effort (money collecting). I later joined the Home Guard, transferred from the 25 Battalion (Infantry) to the gun emplacement at Bradley and was later called up in the Navy, then transferred to the Army, shipped out to India and Burma and finished up at the North West Frontier.

I came home to three months in hospital with amoebic hepatitis and dysentery, and 56 injections of penicillin, which had just come out. Everyone had some story to tell. I enjoyed reading yours in the Examiner.

James Branston


Winners and losers

WHY on earth are the Lib Dems campaigning for a ‘fairer voting system’?

The current system suits them perfectly. They come third and end up in government.

Brian Horton

Berry Brow

Foul play

PEOPLE complaining about dog fouling need to come to Scapegoat Hill, the dog fouling centre of Huddersfield. On New Lane between Scapegoat Hill and Nettleton Hill it’s more like elephant fouling.

Who is going to do something about this problem?

J Hammond

Scapegoat Hill

Looking for old boys

I WISH to bring to the attention of any of your readers who may have an interest, the existence of the TS Vindicatrix Association.

The ‘Vindicatrix’ was a training ship based at Sharpness, Gloucestershire, where thousands of boys aged 15-17 trained for service in the British Merchant Navy over the years 1939 to 1966, many of whom gave their lives during World War II.

Our association is well established but we are trying to contact as many of these boys as we can before they are too old to enjoy our regular reunions where we have the chance to meet old shipmates.

Every effort is being made to see that that period of our lives is not forgotten. I can be contacted by phone on 02392 583896.

Bruce Williams

Gosport, Hants

School crossing patrols

I SEE Calderdale Council are trying to give school crossing responsibility to the schools. How long will it be before Kirklees try and do the same?

On this subject, my son goes to All Saints Catholic College which is on a very busy Bradley Road. He was knocked down last week by a quarry wagon – his fault and no blame on the driver.

The school itself has been asking for either a zebra crossing or a lollipop man or woman for a long time but to no avail. Has anyone been forthcoming with anything that will help the school at the busiest time they have? The school supervises all the kids at start of school and the end.

I would not want any parents to go through what I and my husband went through.

Please give us some sort of school patrolling and spend some of our council tax money on doing what the council should do. Don’t give the school more to do – they do enough.

I would also like to thank the school for all they did for us. They have made us as parents realise that we did choose the best school for our son. They really do care. Many thanks, All Saints Catholic College.

Grateful family


Power of wind

MY letter on wind power (January 21) was commented on by Clr Andrew Cooper on January 24.

I don’t recall any reference in my letter to climate change – unless we count the fact that I statedŠ the weatherŠ had been very Šcold – so why did Clr Cooper bring it up?ŠPerhaps it was a ploy to discredit anyone who happens to challenge the efficacy of wind power or the ‘climate change specialists who actually know about it.’

Would that include those specialists who manipulate the data to suit their cause?

There again, maybe he was confusing me with Norman Higgs whose very cogent letter was published just below mine.

The plain fact is that we need electricity generation that can be controlled to meet the fluctuation of seasonal demands and an increasing level of demand in the future. Yes, wind and solar power have a part to play but it will only ever be a minor role and this was the conclusion I came to 30 years ago.

At the time I was writing a thesis for the Open University on the future of electricity generation in this country and considered all the credible alternatives. Then, now and for the foreseeable future there is no viable substitute for carbon based or nuclear generated electricity.

Since Clr Cooper recognises that the only efficient sites forŠ wind generators are off-shore I expect he will now be backing local groups challenging planning applications for erection of these things in the locality.

ŠBy the way, I do not deny that the climate may be changing. After all, it has changed many, many times during the course of the Earth’s existence – without much assistance from man.

Edwin Pickett


Lost – and found

I WISH to thank the person who found and handed in the BHS carrier bag containing my shopping to the counter staff in the New Street Post Office, Huddersfield on Thursday. I was so relieved to get it back safely. I appreciate your kindness and honesty. Many, many thanks.