Readers' letters - September 11

Banking is a service industry '“ customers should come first

During my career in the Forestry Commission, I and my wife lived in several remote places, with the nearest banks 16 or more miles away and no public transport.

Sometimes the local pub would cash a cheque for folk they knew well.

It was my choice of career.

But we were young and fit 

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Now, well into retirement, I can only drive in the relative proximity of my village to access services.

This is an increasing problem for many people – of all ages and capabilities.

Many older folk are not IT literate and are frightened of IT equipment, and may no longer have folk to help them.

Thus the continuing need for friendly, smiling, helpful, over-the-counter bank staff. It is time the banks remembered they are a service industry– a service to the customer first.

RJA Ayre

Address supplied

Speed limiters a better solution

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TV gardener Alan Titchmarsh is against plans to improve the M25 junction 10/A3 Wisley interchange – it threatens a swathe of Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) woodland. The scheme could see RHS Wisley lose 500 trees, including one planted by the Queen to mark her Silver Jubilee.

Highways England claims it’s needed to tackle congestion and reduce accidents.

It’s not the junction that needs improving, it’s the standard of driving.

With significant numbers of drivers driving too fast; too close; using SatNavs and mobile phones; failing to indicate at the right time; or simply failing to indicate at all – we need zero tolerance of careless/lawless driving.

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To think that ‘rotten’ drivers destroy thousands of lives a year, yet someone is prepared to destroy a beautiful woodland before first looking to eradicate the ‘rot’, is nothing short of insane. If a garden/woodland is threatened by an invasive species, we do anything and everything we can to eradicate it. ‘Rotten’ drivers should be treated as an invasive species!

Given plans to test WiFi controlled wagons on our roads next year, and plans to control our homes with artificial intelligence, we clearly have the technology to control driving speeds.

It’s been said many times that we can’t build our way out of congestion. Therefore, to improve the Wisley interchange, if not the whole of the highway network, AND the nation’s well-being, the sensible step must be to use speed limiters.

With energy and car insurance costs rising, and a critical need to cut vehicle emissions, we’re at a stage of evolution where motor vehicle speeds need to be strictly ‘rationed’.

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To protect our ‘green and pleasant land’ and our freedom as human beings, it’s surely a no-brainer!

Allan Ramsay


Don’t back EU punishment

Our friends in Brussels rightly fear that other countries may wish to leave the EU and punishing the UK may help to lock them in. We do not know what further misjudgments and liabilities the member states will be exposed to in future, therefore backing this punitive precedent is somewhat short-sighted.

Ian Oglesby

via email