Our postmen do an excellent job
Further to Sheila Burke’s letter (Bury Free Press, January 25) criticising our postmen.
I am writing to applaud our postmen and also our refuse collectors, who provide us with excellent services whilst coping with staff numbers being cut and bad weather.
I am surprised that a firm of accountants employing 19 staff don’t have enough work to do without post on just one day.
Bury St Edmunds
Shiela Burke’s staff only had to make one journey, no doubt in their shirt sleeves or blouses in heated cars, unlike postmen, all day trying to keep on their feet walking on paths covered in ice.
I think they did a good job and this also applies to others such as paper and milk delivery folk.
WRVS volunteers have been battling through the snow and ice to continue to deliver services to older people and check that they are safe, warm and well.
Fear of slipping on icy paths and treacherous road conditions mean that older people often cannot get out and about and without our volunteers they may not see anyone else for days at a time.
I’d like to say a massive thank you to our volunteers across the region who have continued to deliver vital services like Meals on Wheels to the housebound, despite the bad weather. Many volunteers have gone beyond the call of duty and have carried on when other services have stopped.
Thank you and keep up the good work.
WRVS head of operations for the East & South East
Decline coincides with SOR
I note the catastrophic fall in Suffolk’s GCSE performance continued in the release of statistical information from the Department for Education.
Sixth from the bottom in England for five A*-C, down from being in the top third six years ago and 10th from the bottom when you include English and Maths and a further fall in expected progress in English and maths where the county is yet again scraping the bottom of the country.
Thank goodness for the likes of Thomas Mills and County Upper School who continue ‘to get on with it’ having taken themselves outside Suffolk LEA control by becoming academies and out-perform the rest by a country mile. I’m sure Cllr Newman will blame middle schools, English regrading and sunspots but as it coincides with the SOR one has to wonder . . .
Mind you, when we do improve as a county I’m sure credit will be taken by those who got us into the mess in the first place.
Dr D J Rolph
Councils need to build homes
Put together two letters in last week’s Bury Free Press –that of the Green Party Bury councillor with that of the leader of the county Labour group – and you arrive at an indisputable policy for our local council which would solve the problems of both the several thousand families and of the many hundreds of single people on the Housing waiting list.
What is our Tory council doing about it? They should be publicly committing themselves now to building, if not council houses, then sufficient affordable homes to meet the growing demand.
Bury St Edmunds
Cllr Sandy Martin makes a critical point (Letters, January 25) in the ongoing discussion about affordable housing in Bury, when he suggests that the people of Bury deserve to have public representatives that actually believe in the public provision of housing, and that we cannot just leave the private sector to resolve this social crisis.
Cllr Anne Gower displays typical Tory complacency (Bury Free Press, January 18) by suggesting that the councils response to the incident, where, but for the provision of local charity, two homeless people would have slept rough on the streets of Bury on Christmas night, is that the council is to ‘review its processes and policies’.
When is this council going to wake up and realise that the answer is to build more affordable council homes, and please don’t say it cannot be done, because as Cllr Martin says they are doing it in Ipswich, and indeed many other parts of the country.
The policy that needs to be scrutinised is council house provision, because in 2012 councils were given a wonderful opportunity to review that provision, when nationally council housing finance was reformed under the rather arcane sounding Housing Revenue Account reform. In short, councils have taken on a share of the national housing debt and in return they are free, up to a point, to manage this debt as they wish. In some cases that will mean rushing to repay the balance as soon as possible, others may choose to use this opportunity to return to council house building by maintaining its opening level of debt and maximising the level they can borrow to invest in council housing.
I have no idea how st Edmunsbury intends to manage this opportunity, but it does present our elected councillors with the opportunity to demonstrate that they do truly believe in the public provision of housing by bringing forward housing strategies that reflect this very clear need.
Citizens should pick up litter
Regarding Ann Byford’s letter (Bury Free Press, January 25) when she complains of the litter in the streets of Bury, I quite agree that the detritus one sees everywhere is a total disgrace and an uneccesary spoilation of our beautiful town.
As part of the Big Society I urge my fellow citizens to try and pick up the litter in the streets where they live and the problem would be much ameliorated. It is unrealistic to expect the public to pick litter in the Buttermarket and Cornhill Areas as it would be the equivalent of the Myth of Sisyphus or the Labours of Hercules, but in one’s own neighbourhood it is not at all arduous.