Readers’ letters - December 21

Should Sir Ian Botham and other wealthy pensioners get a bus pass? See letter
Should Sir Ian Botham and other wealthy pensioners get a bus pass? See letter

Don’t use so much petrol

Damned if we do, damned if we don’t! If we burn oil we get floods, if we don’t, tourism suffers.

Why did children stop walking to school? We drive more than we need to, we drive faster than we should, and we park where we shouldn’t. In bad parking, we leave gaps too narrow for buses and HGVs to get through. Wouldn’t such a state in our bodies be classed as ‘hardening of the arteries’? How apt a description for roads ‘blocked solid’ with ‘huge lumps of metal’? Doesn’t gridlock amount to ‘seizure’?

In burning more oil/petrol than we need to, (or in speeding: more than we should be burning), we fill the air with CO2.

Presently at 400 parts per million, and thus global warming – so they say. Not to mention mountains of tyres.

With collapsed bridges, and blocked and flooded roads, we must drive ‘around the houses’ or a big expanse of water, for example, Firth of Forth. As often as not, we drive faster than we should to make up for lost time. Sometimes we crash, cause a ‘seizure’ and the problem gets worse. Sometimes people are seriously injured or killed. Sometimes the victims are innocent children.

It’s great that everyone mucks in when there’s a disaster, but if we’re going to ‘save the planet’, for instance make a happy home for the next generation, everyone needs to muck in all of the time. If we did this 24/7, then maybe we wouldn’t need a 24/7 health service. Theoretically, if we ‘throttle back’, (say 25pc), then CO2 will drop from 400ppm to 300ppm – job done! For wars and disasters ‘bulldogs’ are great – hence Great Britain – but when we’re driving, we need to be more akin to a guide dog: more like fit soldiers in control. My heart goes out to the victims of Storm Desmond.

Allan Ramsay


Ideas to help householders

I feel sorry for the people of Carlisle and anyone else who has had their Christmas ruined by these terrible floods. Nobody wants to see the inside of one’s house ruined every five or six years by climate change weather, which the weather experts say we are going to get for the foreseeable future. The government has just spent millions on flood defences in the Carlisle area and yet the defences have been breached.

Wouldn’t it be helpful by the government to say to householders in the flood areas prepare for the worst. If the flood barriers are breached, make sure the three main entries of water into one’s home are sealed.

Airbricks with a bolt-on pad.

Doorways with a sealed bolt-on pad.

Drains into one’s house capped off and a dry toilet on stand by until the floods have subsided. Provided the brickwork is tight, water ingress can be reduced by 80 per cent.

If the house has ground floor floorboards, a few boards can be taken up and water under the boards can be pumped out.

With luck your ground floor carpets will remain dry.

Geoff Lodge via email

Sir Ian just
as entitled

I have heard there is a debate concerning whether or not Sir Ian Botham and other wealthy pensioners should be given a bus pass. This shows how the Labour Party think.

Of course he is entitled, as we all are who have worked all our lives and paid our taxes, to all the benefits of retirement.

I doubt very much if he will use the pass, but the cost of means testing pensioners for these benefits would far outweigh any use he makes of his perk.

Hilary Andrews

Address supplied