Litter treated seriously

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Councillor Bryan Lodge has come in for some justified criticism in recent months over the council’s tree felling policy and actions so it was reassuring to read in Monday’s Star that as cabinet member for the environment he is leading an effective campaign to tackle the problems of litter within our city.

The fact that Sheffield Council’s environmental enforcement officers have handed out 849 fines in 2016 is good news but even more commendable when one looks back to April 2012 when the front page headline in the Star read ‘What a Load of Rubbish’ and the subsequent article reported that only 13 fines had been handed out in Sheffield in 2011-12.

The article went on to expose that the neighbouring councils in Barnsley, Doncaster, Chesterfield and Rotherham all had more effective enforcement strategies than Sheffield City Council.

One can only conclude that the embarrassment of their ineffective performance at that time, as exposed by the Star, has contributed to the litter problem being treated more seriously in Sheffield.

The environmental officers are clearly doing a very difficult job well and one hopes that they can issue even more fines in the new year.

Harry Hunter

The Friends of Greenhill Park

How long did letter take?

I’d just like to ask S Miller, from S2 how long it took to think up and write his/her letter?

Hopefully ‘us’ protesters will at least save some of our stunning trees.

Hopefully this will be enough to compensate for your hot air with plenty of oxygen.

Twisted Nerve

by email

MP doing the right thing

Sheffield MP Louise Haigh is doing the right thing raising questions in Parliament regarding the alarming decision by Sheffield City Council to close the city’s last specialist dementia respite centre, Hurlfield View by March 2017. She is right in stating: “These patients cannot be cared for in the community.

She is being wise before the event. (The Star December 14)

As is often the case, those that make these crucial decisions, be it in government or council , have little or no personal experience of the real impact on people’s lives.

Stephen Clark

Bank Terrace, Tideswell

Look after our own first

Every one of us in this great country of ours should be hanging our heads in shame at the way we have allowed our old people and the vulnerable to be treated so appallingly when in care.

And yet we continue to send billions of pounds overseas in foreign aid to allow many country’s to waste our money on ‘harebrained’ projects without a whimper from our past and present governments.

For instance only this week came news of the complete waste of £285 million of British taxpayers’ cash used to build an airport in the South Atlantic Territory of St Helena, which can’t be used by the commercial aircraft it was intended for because of the dangerously windy conditions.

Other examples include a £4m grant to launch an Ethiopian version of the Spice Girls pop group, £15m on a scheme to reduce flatulence in Colombian cattle in order to combat global warming and £3m to increase awareness of British football in China.

This is what happens when you calculate spending according to some arbitrary target of 0.7 per cent of total GDP instead of carefully scrutinised needs.

‘Posh’ Dave, remember him?, set this target for overseas aid, almost double the European average and stubbornly stuck with it even as spending cuts began to bite here at home.

As a result, the foreign aid budget ballooned from £7bn in 2010 and will reach £15bn in 2020.

Yet we cannot, or will not look after our own who are in need most.

Absolutely disgusting.

Terry Palmer

South Lea Avenue, Hoyland, Barnsley S74