Readers' letters - March 22
Reject this Test Track plan
I have lived in Midge Hall for 65 years and would like to give a personal view regarding the Leyland Test Track Development.
I would like to put forward my objections to the gross over- development that doesn’t resemble the SRBC local plan (adopted July 2015).
The test track definitely needs developing but should be done as laid out in the SRBC Local Plan (adopted July 2015).
SRBC produced a local plan (adopted July 2015) which outlined a specific area for 750 houses and a substantial area for industrial use and access via Titan Way only.
The foreword eloquently describes how there is a strong vision for South Ribble as a place to live and do business, together with opportunities to enhance existing open spaces and award-winning parks that sound as if it will become the Hanging Gardens of Babylon.
This application is a million miles from the 2015 plan and when overlaid on the local plan shows large areas of green corridor and green belt, together with accesses onto country road Longmeanygate, that will be completely decimated.
The industrial area has been reduced by 70 per cent and replaced by houses, thereby reducing employment opportunities.
Residents were only made aware of the master plan on November 4 on a flyer from Coun Michael Green.
On his flyer he voiced his concerns regarding access onto Longmeanygate, number of houses and loss of industrial space.
I know numerous concerns have been sent to SRBC regarding the above points with no changes whatsoever.
Why was the increase in the number of houses – from 750 to 1,200 – and the two additional accesses onto Longmeanygate allowed?
Why SRBC is selling Paradise Park?
I thought this would belong to the local residents.
A park in the hands of a developer I think is the ultimate nightmare.
I have contacted our local MP to discuss this application and the selling of Paradise Park and the lack of opportunity to have more dialogue with the council.
I don’t understand why this is purely developer driven and there is no dialogue with the local residents.
I believe the residents have some good ideas that can add to the local plan 2015.
We would just like an opportunity to have discussions for such a large project affecting so many people.
The only change made so far has been the addition of a school on Paradise Park where they were going to build houses.
I would ask the planning committee to reject this application and start again to comply with their own SRBC local plan (adopted 2015).
What chance have residents got when they can’t even comply to their own plan?
I know there are Government guidelines to build a number of houses and I would think 750 is a good contribution, but it doesn’t say at the cost of the quality of life to the local residents or putting huge numbers of additional traffic onto a country lane already under severe pressure.
Please come to the planning meeting on March 22, at 6pm, at SRBC West Paddock, Leyland, to support local residents in getting this application turned down.
If it goes through at this meeting, the principle will be established and the consequences will be dire for years to come.
Put people first – not profit
The withdrawal of the 150/151 bus service has caused dismay in the Gregson Lane-Hoghton-Coupe Green part of South Ribble.
Local councillors are working alongside community campaigners to restore the same or an equivalent service.
As a candidate for South Ribble East in the May elections, I support their efforts wholeheartedly.
But the truth is that massive Government cuts to Lancashire County Council’s budget have forced LCC to withdraw some subsidies to Stagecoach.
Without subsidy, Stagecoach often deem routes unprofitable and withdraw them.
We must return to a system whereby buses are run for people not for profit.
Award-winning council-run bus services have been set up in Reading, Nottingham and Glasgow.
Residents unhappy with the service can complain to their councillor. Unresponsive councillors can, of course, be removed at election-time.
This, it seems to me, is a much better system than going cap in hand to a private company, whose only aim is to make profit for its shareholders.
P&SRTUC & County Council Candidate for South Ribble East
Public should own railways
Re: Rail Delivery Group claiming to increase capacity by 6,400 trains a week.
Like most people we will believe this when we see it.
There simply aren’t the trains and staff available to make this plan happen.
Fault for that lies smack at the door of over two decades of privatisation.
The train operators are already struggling to run current services and timetables due to a chronic lack of investment and the drive across the industry is to hack back on staff in the search for fatter profits. Our guards are in the front line of that attack on jobs and safety.
Like so much of the spin from our rip-off private train companies, these big promises of additional capacity are doomed to turn to dust.
With the British public paying the highest fares in Europe to travel on rammed-out and unreliable trains, the only solution to this on-going transport crisis is public ownership.
RMT General Secretary Mick Cash
Please consider vision services
I am writing to you regarding vision rehabilitation services for blind and partially sighted people living in my local area.
When a person loses their sight this can be a life-changing experience. Vision rehabilitation offers invaluable support, equipping people with the skills to live independently.
This can reduce, prevent or delay the need for more expensive care support in future.
As national charity RNIB has stated, blind and partially sighted people are at risk of being left behind unless these services are properly resourced.
I understand that councils across England are now deciding on their budgets for the coming year and urge our local council to ensure that vision rehabilitation services are properly funded and supported. If anyone else would like to do the same, or find out more about this campaign, they can go to www.rnib.org.uk/seeandplan or contact the RNIB Campaigns Team on 020 7391 2123.
Ariel Goldmann via email