Letters round-up (including poor BBC coverage of Paralympic flame festival)

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Letters to the editor published in this week’s Bucks Herald newspaper include:


Last Monday my wife gave birth to a son at Stoke Mandeville Hospital, our first child. We are so proud and happy, but very tired!

The care he received at Stoke Mandeville Hospital Maternity Unit was truly superb. It wasn’t an easy labour, or plain sailing after the birth, but the midwives and medical staff could not have been more professional.

They were calm and decisive no matter what new problem occurred, and we were completely confident of their skill and understanding.

Rothschild Ward has a lovely welcoming atmosphere. It is a place of warmth as well as professional care. As a nurse myself, I can sense when a unit is well run and a happy place in which to work.

We are grateful to everyone in the team, and especially to Dr Manal Sabbar, who delivered our little boy.

As Mayor the previous week I had been invited to a 102nd birthday party at Hillside Nursing Home.

Many nursing home residents have no surviving relatives at all, but Mrs Susan Corsby is blessed by a warm and loving family.

It’s quite something to have a good conversation with someone born before the First World War, and then say hello to her great great great grandchild, who may even see the 22nd Century if she lives long enough, as perhaps my little Emre may as well.

As new parents, we are surrounded by good wishes, and thank everyone who has wished us well. But all of us are deserving of love, whether old or young.

The experience of having a baby is an amazing reminder of how much we depend on those in society who care for a living, and on loved ones who can calm a crying child at three in the morning when all hope seems to be lost!

Tom Hunter-Watts

Town Mayor


Let me through your paper say a massive thank you to Dave Stopps and his team for yet again putting Aylesbury on the map to the whole world.

I refer to the brain child of putting the history of FRIARS the music club at Aylesbury Museum for past and present generations to go and see.

Attending the opening night was a great evening which brought back so many fantastic memories of brilliant music and musicians that have graced this great town and putting our town up among the great places to visit and perform by such artists as David Bowie, Genesis and of course the Specials.

The whole evening was magnificent with so much to see and hear the tales from long lost friends ( who no longer have any hair) about the memories of the gigs they went to and there was also a moment to remember those who are no longer with us.

This will bring thousands of visitors to this town from all over the UK and no doubt wider reaches. Who at the time would have thought they would be helping the town’s economy in the year 2014? All we were thinking in those days was who would be the next band coming to this great town.

To finish a big thank you must go to the museum staff who worked tirelessly to help make the evening a success and the artists who came and mingled with the crowd.

The only negative for me on the whole subject is we now have a brand new theatre which is fantastic but no real talent running it in regard to keeping this great tradition in booking great new bands

We as a generation have been lucky in regards to the music scene in Aylesbury we have seen so many top names, let’s not be selfish and deny the present and future generations of the town the same, maybe it’s time someone from the Waterside approached Mr Stopps for some advice.

Trevor Price

Address supplied


Am I the only one who has noticed that our MP Mr David Lidington has suddenly resurfaced just in time for the forthcoming General Election?

Am I also the only one who was disapointed that when we needed him most, when we needed him to represent us, his constituents in the fight against HS2, he was mostly missing? (Working behind the scenes) we were told.

Although we understand that his career is far more important than representing the people that actually voted for him, after all, he is a Member of the Cabinet with all of the benefits in prestige, salary and pension, how can we possibly expect him to actually throw away this lofty position at the very heart of government, in order to represent us.

Of course, now the HS2 battle would seem lost, up he bobs, here there and everywhere!

Our ubiquitous MP is happy to “get angry and demand answers” on anything, as long as it does not affect his chances of further political advancement, but will provide the publicity such a “hard working” MP craves!

His response to matters HS2 is rather like, “hold me back”, or “wait until I’ve taken my jacket off” and “you wouldn’t hit a man with glasses”. All this obviously after the battle’s lost.

As someone who has always voted not so much for the Conservative Party, but more specifically for Mr Lidington, my sadness at our lack of proper representation can be imagined, still some of us have long memories.

Denis Fowler

Simmons Court , Aylesbury


Lock down

I don’t know if you have noticed but walking in to Aylesbury the Bookmakers have all of a sudden put displays in their windows which depict FOBTs (fixed odd betting terminals) and with the words “set time limits” and “cash limits” and bet responsibly.

The bookmakers are panicking because in the autumn a review of FOBTs will be published and they need to be seen as acting responsibly.

I will acknowledge that they are doing something but there is an awful lot more that can be done, and in some ways I see what they are doing as bit of a smoke screen.

We know from the Gambling Commission own figures that last year children were used by the commission and police to test purchase in gambling establishments and that there findings were shocking in over half the facilities visited children 
were allowed to gamble unchallenged.

Also in 2009 109,000 children were stopped in a bookmakers in 2013 that number rocketed to 588,000 and 27,000 were stopped after placing there first bet.

Make no mistake children are being attracted in to our bookmakers to play the FOBTs.

Is there a solution to this ever increasing problem? I do believe there is.

I would like to see a locking/unlocking system accompanied with age verification on all FOBTs.

I do believe this simple measure will be effective in drastically reducing under age gambling.

We don’t want to see our children in Aylesbury or any where else becoming addicted to gambling, the consequences are to sad to even contemplate.

Ian Bartlett

Name and address supplied


Copy of a letter sent to Aylesbury MP David Lidington

With the millions of pounds of cuts being imposed on local councils by central Government, I am deeply concerned about the potential impact these cuts will have on ordinary families who are continually being squeezed by low wages, benefit cuts and rising energy costs.

Of course, it is all too easy to blame the last Labour Government for overspending, though we can’t be held entirely responsible for the global banking crisis that started with the credit crunch of 2008.

Britain is the seventh richest country in the world, but people are increasingly reliant on foodbanks and charities for help. Bedroom tax, which you voted in favour of, should be scrapped, Atos, who have wrongly assessed disabled people fit for work, leading to loss of much-needed benefits, should have their contract withdrawn, and a Living Wage should be enforced, thus providing an incentive to work and an end to a low-pay culture which some are blaming immigration for. I can’t expect you to agree with all I am saying, as the purpose of democracy entitles us to hold different views. But at the same time, all parties should be working together to give everybody a decent standard of living, as we should all have a right to not just exist.

As you are Minister for Europe, you are in a position to represent us as we face our next crisis abroad, the possible hiking of gas prices if war between Russia and the Ukraine breaks out!

But can you explain why, whether we are for the EU or against it, Tory MEPs voted against accepting £3 million from the EU to help the UK’s most vulnerable families? And after the Coalition Government axed the Local Welfare Assistance Fund, worth £347million, giving food and shelter for people facing short-term crises?

We do need urgent reforms, of the Welfare Reforms that your Government has enforced on vulnerable people, while the real scroungers, bankers and tax avoiders, still carry on as if nothing has happened.

Cllr Michael Beall

Labour Party, Southcourt ward


What a disappointment, history in the making, the local media showing support, an amazing effort by all concerned, and what do we get from the BBC and the national media, totally diddly squat on the Stoke Mandeville Paralympic flame ceremony.

I despair for all of those who have worked so hard to create this piece of history, what is wrong with these people, surely they can at least find a few seconds for a brief mention.

I would just like to say a massive well done to all concerned.

Very frustrated

Brian Roberts

Aylesbury Vale District 


Nigel Farage claimed at his party conference last week that UKIP MEPs cannot change a thing in Europe. But this is only true because UKIP MEPs hardly ever bother to turn up to vote or 
table amendments to EU legislation.

In fact, Nigel Farage and his Deputy Paul Nuttall have attended less than half of all votes while four UKIP MEPs have not tabled a single amendment since July 2009.

Contrast this with Lib Dem MEPs, who with a similar-sized delegation have helped to deliver a £30bn cut to the EU budget, exempt small businesses from burdensome accounting rules and slash the cost of mobile phone roaming charges in the EU by 80%.

This shows that when MEPs are active and engaged, they can help change Europe for the better.

If Farage really wants the best for Britain, maybe he should turn up to work. It’s the least he can do to earn the generous pay and expenses package that he criticises but happily pockets every week.

Antony Hook

MEP Candidate, Liberal 
Democrats , South East 


Rachel Charles says: “I’ve just asked my 11 year old this question and his reply - I think it should be competitive because it give is something to work towards”

April Wood Blacher says: “So that only the kids that are brilliant at sport do sport. Yeah. I think the fat unfit ones should not be allowed to compete as they will let the side down and spoil it for the athletic popular kids. NO,! Sport for all is no use to those who dread or fear competition. All Kids 
should be encouraged to play and be active in ways that is fun and not totally based on competency and competitiveness.”

Caroline Griffiths says: “Inclusive but competitive - in my generation we were ignored if we were the last but when I learned how to run at 31 I found out I loved it. Competition is a life skill so shouldn’t be lost.”

Ruby Dazzler says: “It’s very disappointing if you’re always last, but it’s the taking part that’s important. I hated all games and gym (except Pirates hehe) because I was terrified of hurting myself, but was still forced to do them whether I would or not! It’s a good thing to do even if you’re bad at it.

Tricia Flynn says: “No. Point blank, no. I’m sick of kids being taught the only way of achieving anything is to ‘beat’ somebody else. Cooperation and collaboration achieve so much more in the workplace. Why is this not a greater focus in schools? Honestly, the amount of time and money that is wasted in 
industry by people who cannot function without finding conflict somewhere is mind boggling.




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