Illsley should not have stood

IN his heart of hearts, Eric Illsley would have known the game was up when he was out in May asking Barnsley Central voters to re-elect him as MP.

The police were on to him and, even though he initially played the innocent, he changed his plea at the last moment to admit fraudulently claiming expenses when he appeared in court yesterday.

Therefore, why did he not do the decent thing all those months ago and stand down? Pride and hunger for power and profit can be the only excuses. And a scant regard for the people he represented or the position he held.

Earlier disclosures about MPs' expenses had already brought our representatives to a scandalously low ebb in the public's esteem.

Eric Illsley has only added to this.

Despite protestations from other MPs that Illsley was a one-off, the public understandably feel he has been made a scapegoat and this is merely the iceberg's tip.

Make use of advice from Business Link

IN tough economic times, any help for our business community is bound to be welcome. And that is why we welcome the news that Business Link advice services will continue to be made available until the autumn.

However, there is a warning that the service will be cut drastically for the majority of this period.

Business Link has been offering advice and guidance to the business community on a regular basis but the number of applications tailed off towards the end of last year amid uncertainty over the organisation's future, in light of a major drop in Government support it receives.

Now the green light has been given to signal that the Business Link is open to help and we would advise any companies needing advice and support to make use of the services.

This is particularly important in the period we now face while waiting for the new Local Enterprise Partnership to come on stream and put in place much needed support mechanisms.

As low as it gets...

WHEN looking for examples of the failings of life in Britain today, you need cast your gaze no further than Anthony Stevens who stood before magistrates and admitted stealing a Help for Heroes charity collecting box.

The shiftless layabout also admitted trying to pilfer a second collecting box from the counter of a city centre store. He had even gone armed with a pair of scissors so he could cut a cord fastening the boxes to the counter.

This is just about as low as anyone can stoop. The drug user is a pathetic example of a wasted life with no values of others and is prepared to steal from a charity which helps men and women whose lives are ripped apart by war.

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