Recorder letters: Free parking, council's spending, Brexit and more.

PUBLISHED: 12:00 16 June 2019

Hornchurch High Street

Hornchurch High Street


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

Too many mature trees being cut down

A Martin, Burnway, Hornchurch, writes:

While Sadiq Khan, the London mayor, penalises drivers for air pollution in central London and while recognising the trees absorb the carbon produced by traffic, he appears to have no idea of the balancing act.

He seems to believe that planting many thousands of trees will answer the problem and doesn't appear to realize that it will be 60 or 70 years for these trees to mature sufficiently to be of any use.

In the meantime he has seen fit to allow TfL to cut down the mature trees to redevelop Hornchurch High Street and to slow the traffic to create more pollution.

Now move on to the top of the hill by St Mary's school in Upminster to the new development, I refer to the red brick building, where the building line has been brought so close to the road that the mature street trees are growing into the window openings.

Another excuse to cut them down.

I will now return to the old sore in North Street, Hornchurch.

At a council meeting held at Langtons by the Residents Association, present were Cllrs John Mylod and Barbara Matthews.

A decision was made that a preservation order should be placed on the holm oak as Crown House had applied for planning

permission to extend upward and to the north which would have destroyed the tree, an extremely beautiful specimen.

Now under a Tory administration the tree has been butchered and I would imagine we will soon see why if building work starts. Can we now expect when the development starts this administration will sign off the order to completely cut down the tree?

Little boys have big ears - I knew what Hitler didn't

Derek Trayler, Grosvenor Drive, Hornchurch, writes:

I was 12 years old and decided to ride my bike to Southend from my home in Chadwell Heath 75 years ago.

When I got to the Ardleigh Green traffic lights I could see there was a line of armoured cars lined up on the London side of the A127.

I went over to get a look and was told to clear off in no uncertain terms.

I crossed back and rode along until I was out of sight of the NCO and crossed back nearer the end of the column.

The soldiers were busy complaining about the stupid inspection. They were members of the Household Cavalry that had swapped their horses for armoured cars.

They had painted all the brass fittings with black paint ready for combat and a high ranking officer from Horse Guards Parade decided to inspect them.

They had to scrape off the black paint and polish the brasses until they shone like gold.

When the inspecting officer left they had to paint them black again. I heard one say that he lived near Portsmouth and hoped they might get a few hours' leave but was told there would be no chance as they would be confined to camp

The following day they were all gone.

My father, a First World War veteran from Gallipoli, said they would be working their way to Portsmouth.

As each wave embarked on the invasion fleet, the next moved into their camp.

My father said that the inspection was probably meant to take the men's minds off the coming battle.

Very few people in Hornchurch knew they were there as it was a big secret.

I didn't learn the date of D-Day but I knew it would be soon and leaving from the Portsmouth area -which was more than Hitler did and would have loved to have known.

Little boys have big ears.

There is still some free parking

Cllrs Stephanie Nunn and Barry Mugglestone, Elm Park ward, write:

In response to Mary Breading's letter concerning the car park next to Savers, it has not been sold off.

Row Investments terminated Havering Council's lease with no notice of their intentions and are currently in dispute about this. Meanwhile, Row Investments are charging residents £1 for 30 minutes and £1.50 each hour thereafter. This is operational Monday to Saturday.

However, it is important to publicise all the alternative free parking and this is what Hornchurch Residents' Association have been doing to support our local businesses.

There is still 30 minutes' free parking seven days a week. This is available in the car park next to the library in St Nicholas Avenue, along the main street and in Station and Tadworth Parades. However, you must get a ticket from the pay and display machines.

The Conservative administration have also brought in a charge of £1.50 overnight in car parks and £1.50 on a Sunday.

Unsurprisingly, we observed that the car park was empty as residents were parking on single yellow lines at these times instead.

Shoppers, you are very welcome in Elm Park and we have an excellent post office in the pharmacy with friendly staff to help you.

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RA councillors are independent

Terence F Matthews LL B (Hons), Resdients' Association Member, Hacton ward, writes:

With reference to the letter from Mary Breading, I agree with all of her points except the last sentence.

Why do these Labour Party members always come out with the ridiculous statements about the Residents Associations being re-painted Tories and other such insults?

I, as somebody who has never been a Tory, consider these allegations to be as childish as they are wrong.

Ex-councillor Breading knows only too well that I was not only a Labour member at one time but Hornchurch branch secretary. Many members of Residents Associations have no party political allegiances and many with party political allegiances vote RA in local elections (fact).

I think any intelligent person sees the advantage of having local councillors who represent local residents fully without the political party whipping system.

It shows the false support for a matter, when a councillor who has opposed parking charges in Hornchurch, Upminster and Dagenham constituency Elm Park ward for over 22 years but votes to impose them when they become a Tory councillor. No moral fibre when it comes to being told how to vote by your political party bosses.

RA councillors are independent and no whipping occurs so they vote as they wish, on the facts.

Councils wasting our money

Miss R Osbourne, full address supplied, writes:

I felt compelled to write because I know how angry many of your readers must feel regarding the appalling penny pinching behaviour on the part of the council regarding the 30 minute free parking concession and other big issues and below are some examples.

We have been fighting with Brentwood Council for over a year or more regarding the appalling condition of the narrow lane we live in. This lane runs into the A127, a major A Road.

There have been numerous accidents because of some of the deepest potholes we have ever seen, some measuring up to 30cms.

The problem is that to avoid hitting oncoming traffic we have no place to go other than into the potholes causing thousands of pounds worth of damage to vehicles' tyres that belong to most of the residents who live in the area and the councils refuse to pay for the damage.

Consequently we are taking our local council to court.

Here's the good bit, did you know our local council is contracted to companies that charge £450 to fill one pothole? We asked for freedom of information and they had to give us the information and we have the proof in writing.

We hired a reputable company who charged £18 to fill one pothole just outside our property in the lane so what is the council's excuse?

This company used a long lasting environmentally friendly substance and it took them 10 minutes.

We attended a meeting regarding the possible cancellation of the free 30 minute parking concession.

The head of the council then commenced to tell the invited locals (who incidentally were not allowed to comment on this issue so why invite them in the first place) how much money the council intends to spend on upgrading local leisure facilities.

After the meeting we all left and we were fuming. The money the council intends to misspend on useless ideas could be better spent on youth clubs, hospitals, the police or many other pressing issues like the problems with the NHS.

I hope you publish this as it is seriously something that tax payers are entitled to know especially in the light of the outrageous amounts of money these bigwigs in the councils earn. Apparently the head of our council gets around £166,000 pa and for what?

With everything else going on in this country we need a revolution as this is now a police state.

No conclusion can be drawn on Brexit

Alan Weetch, Rodney Way, Romford, writes:

The letter in last week's recorder from the Romford Liberal Democrat Ian Sanderson attempts to put a different interpretation on the recent European elections.

In it he says: "The results of the election show that the narrow leave majority of 2016 is in doubt". Well, 2016 was also a result, which he himself uses the word majority, and isn't another word, democrat, in the title of the party he represents.

The Brexit Party are the largest representative party from any country of the EU.

The Liberal Democrats and Green parties represented their own agendas, such as global warming as well as Brexit, so no conclusion can be firmly drawn from the result in that respect else they would not have stood against each other in the constituencies they represented.

Cancer nurses need support

Ed Tallis, head of services, London, Macmillan Cancer Support, writes:

The shortage of nurses could have dire consequences on those caring for cancer patients in London.

There are over 1,000 Macmillan health and social care professional posts in London, often based at hospitals and in the community supporting people with cancer and their families.

It is therefore worrying (but not surprising) to hear that two-thirds of nurses feel that they are struggling to provide good care to patients who are dying as a result of staff shortages, as Marie Curie has recently warned.

Too many nurses find themselves compromised, trying to make sure patients are comfortable but unable to go the extra mile due to increasingly heavy workloads.

When it comes to specialist end-of-life care, allowing people the space to open up about their fears and wishes, and what they need support with, is essential. Without it, people living with cancer will not get the personalised care that allows them to live as fully as possible and ensures their end of life wishes are respected.

Difficulties in recruiting to the social-care workforce also mean that people with cancer who want and need personal care to support them to remain in their own home are not always able to get it.

While the need for a fully funded plan for social care has never been more urgent, the long-promised green paper has been kicked into the long grass.

Nurses and people living with terminal illnesses across the country deserve action today. The government must make delivering a plan for our workforce, which realises the ambitions of the NHS long-term plan, an urgent priority.

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