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READERS' VIEWS: Your letters to the Bury Free Press of Friday, July 27

By Newsdesk Bury

Fifteen trees at Holy Water Meadows have been vandalised. (3246303)
Fifteen trees at Holy Water Meadows have been vandalised. (3246303)


What mentality causes such vandalism? Fifteen beautiful semi-mature alder trees had been planted in the spring. Two weeks after, two of them were snapped off. A few weeks ago, another two were broken down.

On Sunday the remaining 11 were forcibly destroyed.

This beautiful meadow is a pleasant walkway from town.

The council needs to have CCTV and lighting installed.

Jane Popham

Via email


Both Ian Smith (Project Fear is Running Again) and John Shayer (Britain Sinking under the Weight; both Readers’ Views, July 20) see leaving the EU as a way to “take control of our borders”, but we do not need to leave to do this. We already implement passport and other controls at ports, borders and airports. In addition, there are EU regulations which enable governments to manage EU migration. These have never been implemented (by choice) in the UK. Leaving the EU over “uncontrolled” immigration is therefore unnecessary. if the UK Government chooses it can take control.

Similarly, we should not dismiss George Soros (referenced by Ian Smith as part of ‘Project Fear”) who lived under Nazi occupation and is committed to assisting democracies in avoiding the rise of totalitarian governments. His interest is an alarm call, implying that his foundation identifies that the individual rights and stable Europe we have all enjoyed in the last 40 years are at risk from the Brexit process and those supporting it.

This is identifiable in the shape of things to come. The EU Withdrawal Bill places power in the hands of Government ministers after March 2019 – avoiding Parliamentary scrutiny. As well as undermining Parliamentary democracy, the Bill has worrying omissions. For example, equal rights at work for women are simply referenced as a “Government commitment” which has no legal standing and will have significant negative impacts if not enacted into law. There are plenty of others, including personal and animal rights and environmental impacts.

We do not know who these Government ministers will be in March, 2019, nor their priority list, and we have no guarantee of correction.

So maybe we should be alarmed by the future and question the arguments made for Brexit so far. Perhaps we should ask our elected representatives and other campaigners why they have been so willing to surrender our rights and protections and to place our constitutional structures at risk. We may also ask our fellow citizens why they continue to repeat tired arguments whilst omitting to address the losses – financial, democratic and ethical – we all face in 2019. Then we should consider whether it’s time to say “no” to Brexit.

Judith Sargent

Via email


Once again, John Shayer claims that we were “tricked” into joining the EU in 1973 (Readers’ Views, July 20). I wasn’t tricked; I wanted to join then and I want to stay in now.

However, I recognise that Mr Shayer and many others sincerely wish to leave and won the referendum, but I do not think they realise all the consequences. In particular, I have not yet seen any Brexit plan which avoids imposing border controls either across Ireland, or between Northern Ireland and Great Britain. Without control of one of these borders there is going to be an open access route to and from Britain and the EU, and yet control of either border is totally unacceptable. What is Mr Shayer’s solution?

John Wilkin

Bury St Edmunds


I would like to bring your readers’ attention to an event on September 2.

It is the launch in Cambridge of the East of England People’s Vote Campaign. For info or to sign up, follow this link:

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/east-of-england-peoples-vote-campaign-launch-tickets-48027220710 .

I am sure you are as appalled as I am at the incompetence of the current Government and equally at the incompetence of the opposition party. A vote of no confidence will not help us, a general election cannot save us. All that can salvage the dire situation that we find ourselves in is a People’s Vote. The referendum should be cast aside as a corruption of the people’s will through misinformation and manipulation.

Yes, we disrespected our right to a democratic election through being under-informed on the key issues but that was then and now is now. Only the self-absorbed and self-indulgent deny that the opinion of the country has changed.

The appalling consequences of any kind of Brexit will burden us for generations to come. Demand a People’s Vote now, write to your MP, sign the petition, attend the meeting on September 2.

See you there.

Ian Speed

Bury St Edmunds


Warning: this letter is not PC. The new Dean has been installed and it was an interesting headline to go with the picture of the Dean, accompanied by two Canons and two Bishops, wearing all their church finery and pagan mitre headgear (representing the fish god, Dagon) (Bury Free Press, July 20).

I could not help but wonder what reaction John the Baptist (who wore clothes made of camel’s hair with a leather belt around his waist) would have received if instead of preparing the way for the Lord and beginning his ministry with the word “Repent!”, he instead proclaimed “I hope to bring ‘fun and sparkiness’ into your lives, friends”.

John the Baptist lived over 20 centuries ago. He preached a message that pulled no punches. He challenged his audiences to turn from their wrongdoing and start to follow God’s way. He was imprisoned and beheaded because he dared to condemn the adultery of the king.

He would have been condemned and ridiculed by the audiences of his day but even more so today. I can hear the calls of “disgrace”, “bigot”, “how intolerant”. Sin? What sin? Off with his head!

Time will tell what fruit the new Dean will bear. May the Lord be merciful, bless and guide him.

Ian Smith

Bury St Edmunds


The headline to Matt Hancock’s column (BFP, July 20) about connectivity seems ironic, given a constituent’s letter in the same issue telling of a lack of response from him or his office. The writer accepts, as do I, that Mr Hancock is a busy man – but surely as a Government minister he has extra staff to assist him?

The minister is certainly climbing the greasy pole at speed with his recent promotion to Health Secretary; he has rightly lauded the work of NHS employees, especially at West Suffolk Hospital.

Do those staff know of his close links to the Institute of Economic Affairs, which wants to privatise our health services? After all, his ministerial predecessor Jeremy Hunt co-authored a book, apparently now not available, about the same subject. Keep a wary eye!

Jill Mortiboys



I totally agree with Mr Fryer (Bury Free Press, July 20) about the grass verges being overgrown at Westley crossroads, as with many plaes in Bury.

I would certainly put the life of humans before grasshoppers and other wildlife! The state of hedgerows, roundabouts with tall plants, overgrown trees. Traffic lights are terrible, there are elder weeds as tall as trees. I know birds nest, and other creatures need a place to go, but come on – these overhanging branches, overgrown hedgerows and straggly trees need to be kep in shape. All these can be cut back. Creatures move on –

they hear the cutter and scarper.

Frances Potter

Bury St Edmunds


On behalf of Bury St Edmunds Branch of Guide Dogs, may I say a very sincere thank you to al those generous people who were shopping in town on Saturday morning, July 14, who donated to Guide Dogs.

A total of £785.61 was raised.

All of this money goes towards helping a blind or partially-sighted person find freedom and independence with a guide dog.

Margaret Webb

Secretary, Bury St Edmunds Branch, Guide Dogs


As a proud ambassador for SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity, and a veteran myself, I’d like to tell you about a fund I’ve set up with the charity to ensure that veterans in Suffolk get the support they need.

I’ve experienced first-hand the challenges our servicemen and women can face when they leave the military. I thought my transition from the Forces was going to be easy, but I quickly found myself in a bad place.

The Ant Middleton Fund is a call to action. I want change, so we can stop reading stories of veterans unable to get the support they need. I’m hopeful that together we can put an end to unnecessary suffering of those who risked their lives for our safety and get local veterans back on their feet.

After years of putting myself through my paces to be the strongest I could be, both physically and mentally, I felt defeated. It took a lot, but I have put that time behind me, learnt from it and SSAFA were there to support me through it.

The Ant Middleton Fund has been launched to ensure that other veterans get the support I did.

The money raised will help SSAFA provide a lifeline for veterans and their families as they adjust to civilian life, through its transition services.

Veterans who struggle to adapt to life after their military service, can often find themselves in desperate circumstances; suffering from long-term physical or mental problems, unable to find work or suitable housing and without enough money for daily living expenses.

SSAFA runs a range of support services for these veterans to help achieve their potential in their new lives outside of the military.

These services include its bespoke mentoring service which offers face-to-face support to motivate and empower service leavers, plus personalised welfare, housing and practical support for veterans and their families.

To donate to the Ant Middleton Fund, please visit www.ssafa.org.uk/AMF .

Ant Middleton

SSAFA Ambassador and

Special Forces veteran

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