Pothole riddled roads are driving tourists away
THE severe state of the roads in Northumberland has been compared to a third world country by tourists from Dorset that stayed over the Christmas period.
They stayed here in the north of the county for three weeks and said that the people were very friendly, the countryside very beautiful with lots of attractions and things to see and do but unfortunately they spent their three weeks dodging potholes until the inevitable happened - they struck a pothole which caused £400 worth of damage to their car.
That is when I met them as they came into the garage where I work needing two new tyres and a new alloy wheel. When leaving the depot, their last comments were that we live in such a beautiful part of the country but they will never be back because our roads are so bad.
Unfortunately this is not the first time I have been told this. In my job I am seeing on average six cars a day with pothole damage to tyres and wheels. This is causing a lot of people stress as they are having to pay expensive bills and get their cars repaired.
I myself have phoned the council on many occasions reporting potholes and it’s been up to three weeks before they are repaired. I reported the B6548 between Wooler and Weetwood Bridge on December 28 because of its multiple potholes and only half have been filled in. This was well before the snow came.
The council must be made aware of how many cars are being damaged and just how dangerous these roads are before someone really gets hurt. Tourists who will never come back to Northumberland due to such bad roads is a serious concern to our businesses.
Tankerville Terrace, Wooler
Academy should reveal price for sale of land
ON May 10, 2012, the Berwick Advertiser wrote an article entitled ‘School site is chosen for new hospital’. The Northumbria NHS Trust had an exhibition and information centre in Marygate.
Head teacher Mr Quinlan welcomed the decision as “great news for the community”. He said 2.5 hectares of land would be transferred to the hospital, leaving 34 acres for the academy which would have two upgraded football pitches and six improved tennis courts.
Concerned residents asked for a public meeting at the academy to discuss the issue and, in particular, for information on the amount of money involved. We got nothing – just an absence of facts and a lack of clarity.
Now 18 months later the academy is holding a consultation period (Jan 7-Mar 11) “as part of the...process” (ie as if they belatedly realised it had been required all along.
Information was sent to all parents with forms to complete. The display boards at Berwick library are large, attractive, expensive and there again there is a lack of facts. How much money did the school get? How much land? All we are told is that the total left for the school will be 34 acres!
But the accompanying leaflet is intriguing. We are told again of the 2.5 hectares but that now 3.69 hectares will be available for the hospital. Yet 34 acres will still be left for the school.
The present creative accounting leaves us with little trust in landsale process. The deceptive wheeling and dealing over figures is very damaging to the integrity of the headmaster and his original governors.
Parents and residents should now demand to know exactly what sums of money are involved and then decide what it should be spent on.
Or is this academy not part of the future of Berwick?
Palace Street, Berwick
Berwick plagued by useless bureaucrats
I PATIENTLY endured the meeting about the future of midwifery services in Berwick, thinking all the time about a famous poem by Robert Browning in which he described the problems of Hamelin, near Hannover, Brunswick, which was once overrun with rats.
The mayor and corporation of the city, and their servants, could provide no solution to the problem (I have modified some of the words to make the poem more topical):
At last, the people in a body,
To the Maltings came flocking.
“’Tis clear”, cried they, “our mayor’s a Noddy,
“And as for the Health Care Trust – it’s shocking!”
To think we pay these jacks in office,
Who cannot think for love or toffees,
To hear our will, and find solutions,
And carry out our resolutions
With no need of circumlocutions.
They tell us that they’re here to serve,
And yet they have the cheek or nerve
To tell us how we ought to live.
What little they’re prepared to give
To help towards our care when ill,
And how we must accept their will
Because, of course, they foot the bill!
And yet, they’ve built great marble halls
To serve them for their hospitals
Within Newcastle’s city walls.
And who has paid? Aye there’s the rub!
The monies in the general tub
Which should provide for all the County
Run short when we most need their bounty,
And “No, dear friends, we cannot do
The things which you most want us to,
We cannot stretch our funds for you.”
If all else fails, their last resort
To answer any harsh retort
Is mutter “Safety” then to hide
Behind those rules which stretch so wide
That no-one knows with certainty
Just what the scope of these may be
And whether they apply to he.
Rise up! Rise up! And do not fear
To drown these guys in Tyne or Wear,
Who dare to tell our Berwick ladies
Just how and where to have their babies
Deciding for us what we need,
Who live nearby the River Tweed!
Dear Hameliners, You just had rats!
We’re plagued by useless bureaucrats!!
At the end of his poem, Browning told how all the city’s children followed the piper to a wondrous never-never land (perhaps an independent Scotland) and were lost to the town forever.
DAVID MORRISON (M.B.,Ch.B.)
North Bank, Belford
Former Consultant Physician
N Manchester General Hospital
Singing praises of many choirs town has to offer
PART of Berwick’s uniqueness is the many opportunities to sing in our town. I see from the paper there is the possibility of a new choir starting up to join all the others available to the community.
These include of course the Male Voice Choir on Wednesday, the Community Choir at the Scout Hut on Monday, the Thursday Morning Singers at The Maltings, Tweed Music Centre Children and Youth Choirs on Saturday at The Maltings, Take Note! with Alan Rowlands on Wednesday at the Baptist Church Hall and the Berwick Arts Choir on Thursday in Spittal.
There may be a certain economic malaise in Berwick as mentioned in Ross Boston’s excellent letter last week, but there certainly is not a lack of joyous singing!
Amazing fundraising year for Cancer Research
TESCO would like to thank the volunteers from the Cancer Research shop in Berwick. A bag pack was held before the Christmas weekend with proceeds given to the Cancer Research shop in Berwick. Cancer Research UK, Tesco’s charity of the year, has had an amazing fundraising year and we wish to thank all for their support.
Community champion, Tesco
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Weather for Berwick-Upon-Tweed
Sunday 26 May 2013
Temperature: 6 C to 17 C
Wind Speed: 15 mph
Wind direction: South west
Temperature: 8 C to 13 C
Wind Speed: 21 mph
Wind direction: South