Recorder letters: Coronavirus, VE Day 75th anniversary and Terry Hurlstone

PUBLISHED: 12:00 29 March 2020

Terry Hurlstone

Terry Hurlstone


Letters, contributions and comments sent from Recorder readers this week.

RIP Terry – you will not be forgotten

Terence F Matthews LL B (Hons), Clement Way, Upminster, writes:

I knew Terry Hurlstone for many years and found he was genuine in his beliefs. A lot of people did not know him and judged him harshly on some reported incidents. He was well liked by those who really knew him.

Terry never was the same after his daughter, who he loved, was murdered. His political involvement reduced, much to the detriment to the people of Havering.

Terry was never elected as a councillor but did more to help others than elected councillors in his area.

I remember his delight when he posted off a first day edition about bringing down Arthur Latham, the leader of the Labour party councillors on Havering council. I was privileged to receive one, which I still have. Arthur who thought he was untouchable lost the leadership of his party.

I wonder if there is another Terry Hurlstone out there, who could bring down the leader of the Tory council, who if he spent as much time running the council as he does on the leaders blog and looking for a radio or photo slot Havering would really be well run.

Rest in Peace Terry, you will not be forgotten. Barbara and I give our condolences to his family and his real friends.

How to mark 75th VE Day

Bruno Peek LVO OBE OPR, Pageantmaster, wrote an open letter to prime minister Boris Johnson:

Due to the necessary cancellation and postponement of the VE Day 75 Community celebrations because of the dreadful virus circulating the planet at the moment I believe the following provides us all with a simple alternative that could still take place, paying “tribute” to the millions at home and abroad who gave so much to ensure we all enjoy and share the freedom we have today.

What I propose still provides the whole of the UK, Channel Islands and the Isle of Man with the unique opportunity of coming together at one moment in time to celebrate and commemorate this important anniversary on May 8 - VE Day 75 this year without putting the public in any danger whatsoever; especially as there are two elements of the already planned VE Day 75 celebrations that could continue without problem if the media and Her Majesty’s government, led by our prime minister would assist us in making this happen on the 8th May this year.

Friday May 8: VE Day 75

• 2.55pm – Battle’s O’er: Live on TV, radio and through social media, a pre-recorded lone piper plays Battle’s O’er, the traditional march played on the pipes at the end of a battle, and VE 75 Years, the new march I had commissioned in celebration of the 75th anniversary of the end of the war in Europe.

• 3PM -– Speech by then Prime Minister Churchill. Live on TV, radio and through social media, the recording of the famous speech made by Prime Minister Churchill, announcing the end of the war in Europe which was broadcast to the nation in 1945.

• Following the speech, and led by you as our prime minister from wherever you may be at this time, you would invite the many millions of individuals and families throughout the UK to stand and raise a cup of tea, soft drink or another of their choice and undertake the attached ‘Nation’s Toast to the Heroes of WW II,’ from home, paying ‘tribute’ and saying ‘thank you’ to the millions at home and abroad that gave so much to ensure we all enjoy and share the freedom we have today.

You may also want to watch:

• National Anthem: Following the Nation’s Toast all would be invited to remain standing while the National Anthem is played.

I strongly believe the above would be the sort of alternative that Churchill would have undertaken during these uncertain times, providing our country with the unique opportunity to say ‘thank you’ to those who won our freedom should we still be in the position that local community VE Day 75 events throughout the country have to stay cancelled or postponed.

I wish you and your family well over the next few difficult months.

Virus should not force lockdown

Cllr David Durant, Crime and Disorder committee, writes:

It’s hardly a good start for “taking back control” from the EU for the government to ban elections, wreck the economy and impose a national curfew to contain a seasonal flu virus, as the cure becomes far worse than the disease.

As ever vulnerable people need to take extra care and need extra support during the winter months, and new government spending should be focused on NHS and Adult Social Care, but banning all social and sporting gatherings of healthy people is draconian as healthy people can normally cope with a flu, which in turn builds up immunity to infections.

This is why it appears the irrational “lockdown” and sensational media coverage is not primarily intended to contain a virus, but calculated to manipulate public and MPs to pass “emergency” legislation, “the Coronavirus Bill”, giving the government police-state powers (for two years) to introduce detention without charge and remove our freedoms of assembly and free speech.

Following Brexit, the establishment want these new powers to tackle a political-virus called populism!

The government has increased the sense of urgency, by banning social gatherings, eg closing pubs, to get the “Coronavirus Bill” passed without a vote. Fortunately a few brave souls such as former Conservative minister David Davis are rebelling and seeking to mitigate the legislation with a much shorter time limit.

But will our local members of parliament also rebel or meekly throw away our ancient freedoms and self-isolate? Web search Dr Wolfgang Wodarg for more information.

Follow pied pipers of Western Road

Matt Stanton, Romford, full address supplied, writes:

Keith Prince’s column in last week’s edition claims that Mayor Khan “has built just 76 affordable homes in Havering”. As if Havering Council had no part to play in the process

Living opposite the building site that is Beam Reach and the Napier/New Plymouth site, I can assure Mr Prince works are ongoing.

It appears he is massively out of touch with not only our borough but also his Conservative colleagues who have been pushing an overdevelopment agenda for a decade, since now-PM Johnson was London Mayor.

I’m sure that come the eventual election the massive building projects undertaken by Havering Council under the direction of the mayor will simultaneously be a Tory triumph and a Labour shame. It just remains to be seen how many people are still following the pied pipers of Western Road.

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