A selection of readers’ letters from the Bury Free Press of Friday, October 16.
SKINNER STREET COULD BE A GEM
The ugly metal security door into the Abbey Gardens park-keeper’s office has been transformed. t now sports a beautiful picture of the Cathedral.
Congratulations to whoever thought of such an effective solution.
Near identical ugly metal doors hang in the middle of town in Skinner Street – perfect canvasses for schoolchildren and students to publicly display their painting skills, rotating schools and age groups.
Sadly this is unlikely to happen while the shops and businesses which back on to Skinner Street and own these doors, seem determined to keep the street a slum – not safe for children and students to showcase their work.
Many shops and business in town can only use their front doors for all their customers, deliveries and rubbish removal – often with restricted delivery times (eg Abbeygate Street). If they can easily manage, why not others?
Skinner Street has been blocked by scaffolding for well over three years. Has any business really suffered – no! The street so easily could be a gem in the middle of town: traffic-free, CCTV covered, with rubbish collected daily by the council’s own silent, electric, emission-free, walker-operated dustcart, so becoming a joy to walk along admiring the art-work, and attracting more shoppers into town at the same time.
All prevented by a selfish minority: let’s instead see some vision and public spiritedness.
-- Simon Harding, Church Walks, Bury St Edmunds
BAN ON SHIPPING PHEASANT CHICKS
I was very pleased to read that Brittany Ferries have banned the importation of pheasant chicks from France.
The ‘shooting industry’ employs some pretty unnatural practices already, but bringing young chicks by ship from Europe in order to shoot them later here in England plumbs the depths.
I believe that those who have or run shoots should be more conscious of what Middle England thinks. Middle England does not like the unnatural practice of rearing young birds for ‘sporting’ slaughter, in part at least because it isn’t ‘sporting’.
Likewise Middle England does not like foxes or pet cats being shot out of hand because they threaten ‘sporting’ shoots. There’s nothing ‘sporting’ in shooting wild animals that are only doing what wild animals do, and there’s nothing ‘sporting’ in shooting greatly-loved family pets. Watch your practices, shooters. Middle England is watching you.
-- Geoffrey Woollard, St Andrew’s Park, Soham
BELL WEATHER TO WHAT PEOPLE THINK
I was recently taken to task about the number of letters to the editor I have had published in the Bury Free Press. The person being critical has made nothing, contributed nothing, does nothing , so I ignored him.
My most recent letters are about trips and falls in our town centre – currently over 1,300 with 700 hospital admissions, in six months. I am currently in touch with the Police commissioner Tim Passmore, our local MP Jo Churchill, about accidents caused by cyclists on the pavements and pedestrian ways, on their mobile phones out of control of their cycles, unable to brake and avoid pedestrians.
I did think to look at the history of letters to the editors, they go back into the early 1800s – they are a bell weather of what local people think, what is very important to them. They write hoping to bring matters to the attention of those in charge.
I have been in newspapers and magazines all my life, letters to the editor are a measure of our freedom as voters and residents, long may we be allowed to say what is important to all of us.
Yes, I will continue to write about local issues and when I die, people may say ‘Tom tried to make a difference’, of my critic they will say ‘what a waste of a great brain and a life’.
-- Tom Murray, Howard Estate, Bury St Edmunds
STILL NO RESPONSE FROM MANAGERS
With regard to my letter (Bury Free Press, September 11) regarding delayed postal deliveries, please publish a thank you on behalf of myself and seven other people, to the head of postal services in the Bury area for not having the common courtesy to reply.
Along with the other interested parties, which include three businessmen, we can only assume that either there is no sensible reason, or it’s a case of ‘it’s only the paying customers, so ignore it’.
-- Roger Holton, Bury St Edmunds
SOCIETY WELCOMES NEW MEMBERS
An article in the Bury Free Press of September 25 reported on an astronomy evening in Nowton Park, organised by the Orwell Astronomical Society. It mentioned that there’s no astronomy society in West Suffolk and offered help in setting one up. Generous though that is, readers may like to be aware that there does indeed already exist such a club in the area!
This is the Stour Astronomical Society which meets on the first Tuesday of each month at 7.30pm in the Cavendish Memorial Hall. New members are always welcome – just come along to the next meeting. For more information including contact details please see: www.stourastro.org.uk.
-- Andy Parrett, Hawstead
PLEASE RUN FOR DIABETES UK
Diabetes UK is urging people who have got a place in the London Marathon ballot to help the charity raise much-needed funds.
Most places in the London Marathon are offered by ballot, with successful applicants then deciding which of their favourite charities they will run for. We are urging those successful runners who got a place to select Diabetes UK. This will help us to care for, connect, and campaign alongside even more people living with diabetes as we continue our work to prevent and, one day, cure the condition currently affecting 3.9 million people.
All runners who join the Diabetes UK team will receive a branded vest complete with personalised lettering, crazy hair, a fund-raising toolkit, online support, training tips, and will be invited to our post-event cooldown party, complete with massage therapists.
If you applied and didn’t get a ballot place, we have places in the Brighton Marathon, Edinburgh Marathon and even the Berlin Marathon. Or if you want to tackle something shorter, there are 5ks, 10ks and half marathons all over the UK you can enter to support us – or get a place yourself and then fundraise for us.
If you would like to run for Diabetes UK, then contact the events fundraising team on 0345 123 2399 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
-- Teresa Strange, Eastern region fund-raiser, Diabetes UK
NO NEED FOR ANIMAL TESTING
In light of CRUK’s announcement this week of their “Grand Challenges” £100 million grant scheme, when it comes to laboratory research, Animal Aid urges them to invest solely in species relevant human-based science, not unreliable and cruel animal-based methods that are scientifically dubious and to which some scientists display an attachment which is both puzzling and depressing.
The scientific case against animal research is supported by Professor Azra Raza, of Columbia University, who stated: “An obvious truth that is either being ignored or going unaddressed in cancer research is that mouse models do not mimic human disease well and are essentially worthless for drug development”.
Additionally, the former director of the highly influential US NIH stated: “We have moved away from studying human disease in humans…We need to refocus and adapt new methodologies for use in humans to understand disease biology in humans.”
Away from the laboratory, CRUK should pay heed to their own recent statement that healthier lifestyles could have prevented almost 600,000 cases of cancer in the UK between 2009 and 2014.
-- Jessamy Korotoga, Campaigner, Animal Aid
THANK YOU FOR GENEROSITY
Many thanks to all who gave to the Tesco store collection on Friday, September 25, for Action for Children. We are pleased to say that the amount raised was £229.93. Your generosity is greatly appreciated.
-- John and Janice Davies, Bury St Edmunds