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LETTERS: your views.

Elderly are overlooked by uncaring authorities

MANY hundreds of elderly people are struggling in unsuitable homes, unable to find or afford a better alternative. Few local councils are treating the crisis with anything like the seriousness it deserves.

A majority do not have any proper housing strategy for the elderly. These include Coventry, North Warwickshire, Stratford and Warwick.

A McCarthy & Stone survey of all local authorities in Britain reveals fewer than one in 10 has properly addressed this crucial issue.

This is not the way to treat the fastest-growing and potentially most vulnerable sector of the population, especially when 3,500 care home beds have disappeared in the past three years, largely through changes in regulations.

But there is now an opportunity for local authorities to grasp the nettle, with the formation of the Housing and Older People Development Group under the wing of the deputy prime minister.

The group is encouraging all the kinds of housing choices that should be open to the elderly in 21st-century Britain.

As the country's largest provider of sheltered housing for older owner- occupiers we are pleased to be represented in this group. I urge councils to take advantage of the initiative.

Keith Lovelock, chief executive, McCarthy & Stone plc, Binley Business Park.

No regrets

WHEREAS most of my friends regret getting older I don't. I've gone through some fantastic years and events in my 73 years that most people never experience.

Born near the mouth of the Tyne in flats overlooking the docks and shipbuilding areas, I saw and experienced some of the poverty people had to put up with.

Going through the bombing, shelling, and mayhem of the war after we moved down to Coventry, it seemed to children like we a terrific experience and I don't recall ever being scared, even when I joined the Royal Artillery Boys Service in Woolwich in 1945 and saw the rockets coming over. We dived into shop doorways or gardens.

Of course since then I remember Sinatra starting off, Elvis Presley, Bobby Soxers, the 50s, 60s, and 70s music, and being a jiver and loving dancing.

I went through the best music years ever.

No! I don't regret getting old.

Mr J C Tyler, St Lukes Road, Holbrooks.

Holly trees go

I MUST write about the cutting down and removal of the two lovely holly trees facing the flats at the junction of Clark Street and Bell Green Road.

These trees have stood there for many years, they were planted when the flats were built after the war. I remember them being planted and I saw them being cut down.

They were lovely in winter and brought a nice touch of green to an otherwise bleak area.

I wonder whose bright idea it was to remove them? This council wants to turn Coventry into a concrete jungle.

I believe the reason for their removal was that somebody complained they were harbouring rats. What these people don't realise is the nearby brook is infested with rats which come out at night and can often be seen crossing the Bell Green Road.

As for the holly trees, they did not need to be cut down. All that was needed was to cut away all the suckers from the bases of the trees and thin off any branches a couple of feet up the trunks and the problem was solved.

If I had known that they were going to be cut down I would have trimmed them myself in order to save them.

J Reale, Clarke Street, Bell Green.

Driving poetry

DEAR Mr Hancock I've listened to you.

I'm legally learning, on the city ring road.

At 40 mph what shall I do?

Under taker on inside lane, don't know the code.

I don't wish to moan, but he isn't alone.

They go quite nifty, must be 50.

Urging me quicken, play with them chicken.

Coventry uniquely, needs that you neatly,

Keep to the right, follow sign shown.

High above, right hand lane, "ALL TRAFFIC".

I wink not to offend, just exit left.

None believe me, L plates means I'm thick.

Fast signal-less motorists, spuriously adept.

Toot and flash, to deny I drive my way.

Safe and courteous, along Sewall Highway.

Dear MT sorry you see, it's only me.

Don Smith (long-term driver and still learning), Blackberry Lane, Stoke Heath.

All our top quality entertainment has moved away

I REALLY enjoyed reading the Remember when....? feature by Ann Evans (Evening Telegraph, March 13).

I found it very poignant, obviously because of the death of Adam Faith, but also because of the other photograph which showed people pouring into the Coventry Theatre (Hippodrome) from a coach from Birmingham.

People now have to flock in the opposite direction, as well as north to Bedworth Civic Hall, east to Rugby Benn Memorial Hall and south to Royal Leamington Spa Centre, in order to see these acts, shows and events.

How times have changed.

P R Howard, Nuffield Road, Courthouse Green.

Council tax is up but where does the money go?

RE: 'Bigger burden for council tax payers' (Evening Telegraph, March 12). Are we to be glad we only have a five to six per cent increase?

On April 1, 1993 my council tax demand was pounds 533.40, it is now pounds 867, going up again on April 1, 2003.

Increases per cent wise are meaningless, actual cash value is what people want, with Coventry City Council tax payers paying above the national average.

My tax band is B at pounds 867, the national average is pounds 757 - a difference of 14.53 per cent (and these are official figures).

When we as citizens ask about improvements we are told very quickly "no funds are available" so where is all this money going?

I have been paying council tax to Coventry council for half a century. My first demand was for half a year, pounds 8-4-6d (pounds 8.22) and pounds 1-1-0d (pounds 1.05) water rates, and paid by a certain date you had 2.5 per cent discount, at the same address.

W Bedder, Chelveston Road, Coundon.

...ONCE again we've got a Coventry councillor telling us how good we should all feel with the increase in council tax this year (Your Views, March 14).

In case there is anyone left out there who doesn't know it, Coventry council tax is one of the highest in the country and has been for some time.

End of story.

Kenneth Morgan, Upper Eastern Green Lane, Eastern Green.

Don't bother recycling - the council make it impossible

SO Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council is trying to encourage recycling.

Last summer I cleared an overgrown garden of a large amount of green waste and inquired about collection points for it. No, I could not take it just around the corner to Bulkington recycling as it was the wrong week for it, and no, I could not leave it there for collection the following week.

Not to be deterred - as I like to do my bit for the environment - I travelled over to Dark Lane in Bedworth and sat waiting for the council vehicle. Oh dear, it didn't arrive.

Nevermind, I can take the waste to Nuneaton tip. No, I can't, because it is on a pick-up truck and the tip is for trade waste.

How about dumping it in Bedworth Lane? Of course not.

So muggins here has to take it all the way home again.

Perhaps someone from the borough council could explain this disgraceful approach to recycling when it is supposedly trying to encourage it.

As for the fortnightly wheelie bin collection, I suggest any extra rubbish bags people will inevitably have should be deposited on the doorstep of the council offices until they can come up with a scheme that actually has a chance of working.

Gary Diver, Larkin Close, Bulkington.

to the point

l IN answer to Ron Shuttleworth (Your Views, March 18), God could have created a world without the possibility of evil, but then would we have enjoyed living in a Stepford robotic existence?

Allowing a world containing both good and evil, provides for us the possibility of loving and being loved. Fortunately he is all-loving and benevolent and seeing all the trouble that man has brought on himself has provided the answer - Jesus Christ .

Paul Murray, Nod Rise, Mount Nod.

l I WISH to convey my appreciation to all those concerned with the excellent arrangements made for the daffodil day rally held at at the Central Hall on March 17. The church was beautifully decorated and Christine Lockwood the soloist was superb.

An important contribution was made by the Rev Gasteen who led the service and Tim Campain who played the organ. The event was very well supported and obviously gave immense pleasure to all those present.

Mrs E M Norcliffe, Arden Road, Kenilworth.


HEYDAY: The days when coaches full of theatregoers from Birmingham came to Coventry have long gone - now people have to travel in the opposite direction
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Mar 21, 2003
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