Readers’ letters - Friday, November 25

The Tootle Green site entrance to the Taylor Wimpey development, off Dilworth Lane in Longridge. See letter
The Tootle Green site entrance to the Taylor Wimpey development, off Dilworth Lane in Longridge. See letter


We were right about housing

We are sure, like us, you have been perplexed by Lower Lane being closed for weeks to enable the main sewer to be connected drains work to connect to the Taylor Wimpey Tootle Green development.

WPI Civil Engineering has confirmed that the situation will get worse as Dilworth Lane will be reduced to one lane for at least a week, with Lower Lane remaining closed to avoid three-way traffic lights.

The long-standing issue of flooding at pinch points, such as the entrance to the development and at the junction with Lower Lane, as a result of overflowing drains, still appears not to have been rectified despite weeks of work.

Taylor Wimpey has – whilst making all the right noises, to all the right people – as yet failed to deliver on its promises of fencing, screening and extended garden works to the residents most affected by their work. Do these residents have to wait six years until they follow through on these promises?

The proposed build of 30 houses per year looks unlikely to be achieved based on the current position. Putting this in context, we believe Taylor Wimpey has only completed on one property with five reserved (this includes two part-exchanges) – not the surge in demand we were led to believe for these unwanted houses that will blight our landscape forever!

Work at the much publicised former Whittingham Hospital – another Taylor Wimpey site – has now stalled and I’m intrigued to know how many other new builds remain unsold and indeed whether any more building will take place in the near future.

The supply has outstripped any demand, as we predicted and argued about with planners and elected councillors. How many other properties of similar price brackets are also for sale and creating even more supply and, finally, how many more applications are yet to be heard? Some may be more relevant to the needs of the town, starter homes and retirement bungalows for example, not the three/four-bed family houses that yield the most profit. It appears the Save Longridge campaigners, whilst failing to stop the tide of unwanted new homes from being granted permission by RVBC planners and councillors, were correct in their arguments of over supply, no demand and unsuitable terrain. We suggest the current situation be investigated and made known to the public.

The team Save Longridge



Trump’s not welcome here

It was reported that MP Nigel Evans has written to Donald Trump congratulating him on becoming US President elect and inviting him to visit the Ribble Valley to discuss trade between the UK and the US.

Mr Evans says: “Regardless of what opinions we as individuals have about the President elect, it must be accepted that Donald Trump will be the next President of the United States”.

Whilst it is true Mr Trump will be the next US President, this does not mean we should leave unchallenged the disgusting racism and sexism espoused by one of the most powerful figures in the world. Neither does it mean that the people of the Ribble Valley and the North West should make Mr Trump particularly welcome, should he accept the invitation.

Perhaps Mr Evans should have considered that Mr Trump’s racist rhetoric and misogynistic behaviour is found by many people as offensive. Also by inviting the US President elect, Mr Evans could unintentionally give confidence to the racists who wish to normalise hateful views within our society.

One mustn’t forget the toxic racism from certain politicians during the EU Referendum led to a rise in racially and religiously motivated attacks. In so far as Mr Evans wanting a dialogue with Mr Trump so we can work together for the advantage of everyone, I would hope Mr Evans is asking the question: “Does this everyone include Americans who happen to be black?” I am sure Mr Evans is aware Mr Trump described black people as having a “Laziness Trait”. Does “everyone” include Mexicans who live in the US, who Mr Trump described as criminals?

Mr Trump’s election victory was a wake-up call for us all. It represented a rejection of a failed economic consensus.

But Mr Trump’s answers are wrong. So should Mr Evans receive a response, could I suggest he meets him in the White House or books a table at the Mar-a- Lago Club in Florida? However, should Mr Evans insist on Mr Trump visiting the Ribble Valley, then rest assured there will be a response from anti-racists to ensure he is made most unwelcome.

Mick Mulcahy, Longridge