I WAS disappointed in Barry Gibson’s article (Examiner, November 21) which focused on criticising the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner before the end of its first day in existence.

It is up to me to establish myself and prove that I can make a difference in my new role.

Yes, I did criticise the initial concept of the Police and Crime Commissioner role, but there would have been a commissioner elected whether I had stood or not.

Once the decision had been made to have a Commissioner, I felt strongly that it would be more effective tackling issues from within this role than standing from the sidelines.

West Yorkshire has some real issues to tackle like appointing a new Chief Constable, setting the budget and the Police and Crime Plan for 2013/14 and handling the £100m Government cuts being forced on our police service.

The people have made their choice. The voices of those who have spoilt their ballot or stayed at home have also been heard, but I have been elected and I now need to strive with the public’s help to improve policing and tackle crime in West Yorkshire.

Mark Burns-Williamson OBE

Police and Crime Commissioner for West Yorkshire

Cold comfort

EARLIER this year TransPennine Express, who manage Huddersfield train station, decided to extend the newsagent’s shop on platform one.

This meant that the self-contained heated waiting room which did exist was swallowed up by a much larger shop.

All we have now is a much smaller area which does not have four self-contained walls, but is door less and opens on to the main station concourse.

The cold weather is now upon us, so passengers no longer have a heated room in which to escape from the cold whilst waiting for their train.

It seems to be yet another example in society of commercial interests taking precedence over the comfort of people.

Neil Clarkson

Cold Commuter

Question of answers

‘DEMOCRAT’ of Lindley (Letters, November 29) has certainly compiled a formidable list of questions.

Let’s take a look at the three questions that are a matter of record and not merely opinions.

Top of the A-list, Gordon Brown and the gold reserves sell-off. With hindsight he may not have sold them, today they would be worth 5 billion pounds more, a not inconsiderable sum.

But consider that Margaret Thatcher gave away two million council houses, many of them in the London area, which, if sold today, would be worth a conservative (I like that) 400 billion pounds, enough to buy back our gold and the vast reserves of the United States as well.

Number five on the B-list. Gordon Brown engineered the low interest rates well before he left office. Mr Cameron retained them.

But remember, the mortgage holders’ good luck is paid for by the pension funds and the small saver.

Number six on the B-list, the freezing of council tax. A carefully considered policy this, for it must result in a cut in services which will impinge on the inner city areas far more than on the leafy suburbs. No fools these lads.

It would be far too tedious to go through the rest of the two lists. They’re matters of opinion anyway. Having said all that, I like coalition government. My dream ticket would be a Labour/ Liberal government. That’s what I would vote for.

Don Robinson


Legion’s thanks

THE New Mill branch of the Royal British Legion would like to thank all who attended the Remembrance day service in New Mill church and the parade that followed to the War Memorial in New Mill club.

Special thanks go to the Hepworth Band, Thongsbridge army cadets, and air cadets. Also the local schools, Cubs and Brownies for their involvement.

This year the Poppy Appeal raised over £3,500 and thanks must go to all who helped to raise this record amount in our small area.

This includes the magnificent sum of £637 from the collection at the Remembrance day service. Thanks to all who contributed to this worthy cause.

As the local branch of the RBL we would welcome any new members, especially ex-service personnel to our meetings that are held on the third Monday of the month in New Mill Club at 7.30pm.

Neil Tinker

Chairman, New Mill RBL

Energy solutions

ANOTHER global warming ‘is a lie’ and ‘renewable energy is not the way forward’ letter from R J Bray of Shelley (Letters, November 28).

Global warning or climate change if you prefer is not a lie. Peer reviewed scientific papers by climate scientists say it is not just true but is happening now and is only likely to get worse.

I’m sure R J Bray can scout around the internet and find some oil funded website which will provide him with something that he believes backs up his beliefs but it won’t be borne out by the evidence. I wish R J Bray was right, unfortunately he isn’t.

The usual comments from R J Bray about government providing large subsidies for renewable energy pushing up fuel bills.

Yes there are subsidies for renewable energy but then there are subsidies for all forms of energy including polluting forms of energy such as coal and gas.

Only a small proportion of our energy price rises are due to subsidies for renewable energy.

He has a side swipe at the Green Party for supporting wind power but we have both supported and opposed wind turbine applications locally.

What we have not done is tried to say, like the local Conservatives, that all wind turbines don’t work simply because one make and model of turbine has serious technical problems.

It would be like saying we should ban all cars just because one make and model has had a ‘recall’ notice on it.

People like R J Bray and the Conservatives can’t have it both ways. The subsidies wind energy receives are only based on the amount of energy the wind turbines actually generate. So if they don’t work or are ineffective then they receive no subsidy.

I do believe there is legitimate criticism for Conservative/Lib Dem Government policy on wind energy.

I believe it should be the law that communities near to wind turbines get a reduction in their electricity bills for being sited near wind turbines so they have a stake in the development.

I also believe that wind turbine developers should be compelled to provide a proportion of their profits towards local community projects. There are some examples around the country where this has happened but it is by a voluntary arrangement and is not enforceable by law in all wind developments.

We can’t bury our head in the sands on climate change. It is happening and is going to get worse. We have to act to limit the worst effects.

There is not one magic bullet to solve and reduce our energy demands we are going to need a range of ways to generate and save energy and wind energy will need to be part of that solution.

Councillor Andrew Cooper

Green Party Group Leader