Readers’ letters - February 11

It's time to embrace 21st century technology ' and leave animal experiments behind, says a reader
It's time to embrace 21st century technology ' and leave animal experiments behind, says a reader

Opposite of Robin Hood

The Northern Powerhouse is a sick joke.

The local government cuts have affected the poorer councils in the north far more than the south.

Northern councils under this Tory Government will be struggling to carry out their statutory duties by the end of this Parliament.

Cuts are having to be made to leisure centres, libraries, museums, parks, benefits and debt advice centres, to name just a few services.

Meanwhile, David Cameron has found £300m to help southern Tory councils with their cuts.

Why? Because Tory MPs are threatening to vote against the local government cuts in Parliament.

So it is a sweetener for the MPs that represent Tory councils in the south.

The five most deprived councils in the country – Hull, Knowsley, Liverpool, Manchester and Middlesborough – will get none of the £300m.

Eighty three per cent will go to Tory councils in the south – £24m to Surrey, £19m to Hampshire etc.

David Cameron is the opposite of Robin Hood.

He takes from the poor and gives to the rich.

Mike Turner via email

Experiments are outdated

A new report has revealed that universities are responsible for just over half of all experiments conducted on animals in the UK.

Yet drilling holes into the skulls of dogs, deliberately infecting mice with human diseases, electrocuting rats and implanting electrodes into the brains of primates are not only unethical but also poor science and not required by law. According to former US National Cancer Institute director Dr Richard Klausner: “We have cured mice of cancer for decades – and it simply didn’t work in humans.”

It’s time that our institutions of higher learning aligned themselves with public opinion, social progress and 21st-century scientific pursuits.

The development of cutting-edge non-animal biotechnology such as organs-on-a-chip and computer modelling that predict what will happen in humans with greater accuracy than crude animal experiments is exciting and progressive.

Unless they wish to be at the bottom of the science pile, our universities should rethink their archaic policy regarding animal use.

They must embrace modern, humane research technology and move away from the use of animals in traumatic and deadly experiments for the benefit of their students, researchers and lecturers.

Calum Proctor via email


There’s life after stroke

I write as a proud supporter of the Stroke Association and now a judge for the prestigious Life After Stroke Awards. I’m inviting your readers to nominate their stroke heroes and celebrate the courage and dedication shown by stroke survivors, carers and volunteers in overcoming the challenges following a stroke.

Last year I had a stroke.

It was a shock, but fortunately I’ve recovered well. Thanks to the Stroke Association there have been developments in treatment that mean many more people now survive and, with the right support, go on to live full lives.

Nominations for the 2016 Life After Stroke Awards are now open. Let’s pay tribute to the unsung heroes. The closing date for nominations is April 30.

To find out more, please visit

Chris Tarrant OBE