Good deal for flying squad

The Star: Opinion.
The Star: Opinion.
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IT is far better to have a police helicopter than not to have one, even if it means we have to share it around the region.

So the decision to accept our fate and sign up to the National Police Air Service and have 10 hours of flying time a day smacks of common sense.

After all, as this newspaper reveals today, the police helicopter we operate has been out of service for two months for maintenance.

We will already see an improvement in coverage then.

So does it really matter that it is not in our control? No.

Running a police helicopter is an expensive business but it is not a luxury, it is an essential part of modern-day policing.

The deal struck which actually has the helicopter based out of Sheffield appears to be a good one - and we will probably not even notice the difference.

It only leaves us to ask why couldn’t the former police authority have come up with a similar deal and saved us money earlier?

Teenagers given real alternatives

THE success of apprenticeship organisation W Academy and Education in placing 500 people into the work environment goes a long way in highlighting there are alternatives out there.

For many teenagers, pursuing further academic qualifications is just not what they want to do.

And increasingly, they are looking for real alternatives to committing themselves to the burden of debt by going onto to college or university.

But the problem has been that there are not enough apprenticeship schemes out there to help them get a taste of work and experience that employers will value.

That is beginning to change. This newspaper, for example, is supporting the council’s workplace apprenticeship scheme and has already seen great success.

W Academy and Education is similarly seeing success, managing to place so many people in hairdressing or barbering apprenticeships in just one year.

We need to see more of these schemes put into place, supported by a Government that has introduced tuition fees to university, so that teenagers are not penalised because they choose not to take the university option.

Sport’s new look

THE changes we are making to your newspaper have progressed again today with your new-look Full Time. World class designers have helped us to create the look which we hope you will like.