Labour made green city

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Well, Susan Richardson really went to town this time, with her hysterical attacks on elected members in last week’s Star.

We are accused of having a “staggering level of ignorance and incompetence” and an “arrogance of disregarding the views of residents and advice of arboriculturists”. She accused members of being an “inept and misguided bunch of morons” over the decision to replace less than 1 per cent of the tree stock. A charming lady.

Well let’s get some facts right. Members do not ignore the advice of arboriculturists, indeed the council have historically always employed arboriculturists to advise, similarly so do Amey, but we also employ other experts to advise.

Highway engineers, drainage engineers and structural engineers, also employ people in Health & Safety. People who care for the elderly and workers with people having mobility problems, all have advice to give, helping us to reach rational decisions when it comes to the impact of highway trees.

Just to pick up Susan Richardson’s fascination with the Victorians. Could she tell me just how many trees did the Victorians ever plant down Tinsley, Darnall, Attercliffe, Brightside, Wincobank, Grimesthorpe, Shiregreen, or for that matter all the estates built across the city from the 1920s onwards?

Most of the trees planted in this city were planted by a Labour Council, committed to improving the environment and the quality of life for Sheffield residents. From winning power in early 1920 Labour began planting trees across our city.

Indeed I well remember even in the 1970s an amount was put in the budget annually for tree planting, often opposed by the opposition.

In fact tree planting down the East End of Sheffield was opposed by Tory councillors as being a waste of money as “these trees wouldn’t survive because of all the pollution from the steel works.

One Tory councillor joked about attracting birds so that workers on their way to work, would be able to hear them coughing.

That was the level of support the Tories gave for tree planting in certain areas of Sheffield.

Labour ignored that criticism and continued to plant trees across the whole city and that is how and why our Sheffield gained its reputation as the greenest industrial city in Europe.

This of course has continued to the present day.

The fact is Susan, our city now has four million trees a number we continue to add to each year. Just 6000 highway trees are currently being replaced, plus 600 extra.

It is also a fact that at the end of 2016 due to the Labour council, Sheffield had more trees that it has ever had in its history, and by the end of 2017 it will have even more – a magnificent record of which we should all be proud.

No, Susan Richardson, we are not ignorant, arrogant or incompetent, we do not ignore the advice of experts or for that matter the views of communities, many of whom fully support our policy.

We are dedicated to improving the environment, the air quality and quality of life of all the citizens of this great city.

Councillor Peter Price

MBE Shiregreen/Brightside Councillor for 45 years

The famous Clegg family

While studying my family history I found some articles on the internet by people looking into the famous Clegg family.

They were puzzled as to the identity of William Johnson Clegg’s first wife, Mary.

She was in fact the eldest daughter of my great-great-great-grandparents, Ann Bage and John Sykes .

They were married on November 3, 1847 and their documents are available for free download in public libraries.

There may have been some shame at a Coalpit Lane girl in their ancestry though which caused them not to trumpet it.

Andrew Staniforth

Neill Road, S11

Entertaining evening

I had the pleasure of attending the Octagon Centre to see The Splinters Group perform Rock of Ages.

It was a brilliant show, full of energy and talent, especially the leading artists Adam Walker (Drew) and Jessica Rose Curr (Sherrie).

The whole cast were very professional in their performance and didn’t seem like an amateur group at all.

Thank you all for a very entertaining evening.

Ann Dawson

by email

First park investment

In response to the report ‘First park in Sheffield to benefit from £1.5 million funding boost is revealed’ (The Star, March 3), no mention is made of the benefits of the green corridors created by our street trees.

Studies have shown that people are more likely to walk, jog and cycle on streets with trees than those without.

Yes, we need the parks, and the fact that the money for this welcome investment comes fro the Health budget, in a move to try to narrow the health gap across the city, shows that SCC acknowledges the link between green spaces and public health and wellbeing.

If only SCC would have the courage to apply the same principle, of acknowledging the connection between nature and physical and mental wellbeing, to the green assets currently lining many of our streets, many are in areas where health outcomes are lower than average.

They should then work with Sheffield’s citizens to protect our trees instead of squandering this precious resource.

If all the city’s greenery is concentrated in a few places, we will see the ridiculous situation of people driving to get to parks to exercise, while those who cannot do so are being deprived of the only piece of nature to play a regular part in their lives, the trees outside their houses.

Helen McIlroy

Sheffield

Simple solution

Why after all these years doing the Sheffield Star crosswords do we have to pay to get the Saturday crossword answers?

Need help? it states, call number (supplied) at 80p per minute plus your network access charge.

Paying 70p for a Star is expensive enough without extra charges.

The only reason I purchase the Star is for the crosswords.

AB

by email

Footnote: Crossword solutions are printed the next day, Saturday’s are printed in the Monday edition of the Star.

Good news for Elm Lane?

Good news, Elm Lane in the Parson Cross area, is now going to be resurfaced in June this year, we are led to believe.

It was promised to be resurfaced in 2015 also 2016, so don’t count on it.

It will probably be left in a disgusting state like the rest of the roads in the area.

Mr W Johnson

Elm Lane