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Leigh On Sea News: Points Of View –

Leigh On Sea News: Points Of View –

Points Of View

Letter from: Helen Durell, Station Road, Leigh.

SIR, I learnt today that the provisionally proposed closure of Leigh Library has now been put on hold for a year, whilst Southend Council looks at the overall state of libraries in the City.

It would be a huge loss to Leigh should our library close.

It is on a major bus route, centrally placed near the Post Office and shops, and has the added advantage of being housed in a building of historical significance, the Old Rectory to St. Clement’s Church.

It is surrounded by the beautiful Library Gardens with splendid views over the Estuary and has the well-attended children’s playground next door.

I call on all the people of Leigh who value this amenity ‘not’ to sit back and hope all will be well.

We all need to visit the library often, take out books, use the computers, attend the many clubs and events which take place weekly and even, if you have time, join the team of volunteers!

Take heed! Were our library to be closed, we would never get it back again.


Letter from Robert Howes. Committee Member of Southend and District Pensioner’s Campaign.

SIR, we have many older and disabled residents across the City who are unable, or struggle to leave home without assistance and often have no contact with the internet.

Any help the Council offers is often not known to these people.

An urgent and pressing need is for a Southend Community Transport Service, which would enable many older people to travel to important appointments, events, and activities. An Older People’s Champion would be able to focus on the underlying causes of isolation and in some cases malnutrition and hypothermia which affects some of our older residents.

Without hard copy leaflets through the doors, many residents have no idea what is provided by the Council, and the standard of email communication has to improve.

We (Southend and District Pensioner’s Campaign) do not agree that their Co-Production strategy effectively engages with our older people.

The Ageing Well and our Caring Well strategies, the public facing events and activities, the support from the Essex Fire Service and Libraries, are all very well.

We asked if the Leader of the Council would reinstate the role of an Older People’s Champion, which was previously held by Mr. David Norman MBE. The answer was no, and the justification took up eight paragraphs. The reason for the refusal was basically that the Council considered what they were already doing was sufficient to meet the needs of our more senior residents.

As a Committee Member of the Southend and District Pensioner’s Campaign, I was appointed to attend the Southend City Council’s Full Council Meeting on Thursday, December 14 last year, to ask a question as a member of the public. This was because we had spent several months trying to receive an answer by email and did not receive one.

The real benefit of appointing an Older People’s Champion is that it would provide an over-arching conduit of communication between the City Council and its older residents.


Letter from: Pamela Roach, Glendale Gardens, Leigh.

SIR, after reading the proposed 20 mph speed limit in some roads in Leigh, I would like to ask if anyone who lives in the vicinity of Southsea Avenue/Glendale Gardens (which is where I live) has ever been able to drive at 20mph!

We did try to do this coming down Southsea Avenue from London Road end and managed a whole 10pmh.

I have witnessed drivers going far over this limit when perhaps being chased by a police car, but ordinary day to day driving just does not allow this, with the appalling state of the roads, and constant pulling in to allow another car through.

I think one way traffic in Southsea Avenue is a must.


Letter from: Christopher Gay, Barnard Road, Leigh.

SIR, I’m horrified by the suggestion (in 9 January Leigh on Sea News) that a 20 mph limit could be extended to all residential road across Southend. Similar to Wales!

I hope all will think this through. Do you realise how slow 20 mph is? All those thinking of supporting the idea, please limit yourself to 20 mph for the next 7 days and see if you were able to stick to it and how you felt about doing so.

The 20 mph would apply every minute, of every day, regardless of whether the road or pavement are empty.

It would take away our ability to make our own judgements on whether 30 mph is an appropriate speed based on circumstances and punish us if we did – as for doing 30 mph on an empty residential road at 9pm, we would be liable for points on our licence and a fine.

Is this really what Councillors and officials are there for – to make such decisions for us? To control our lives in this way? I want them to focus on delivering better public services. There’s plenty of room for improvement.

If this 20 mph initiative is pursued, I think it would become a significant issue at elections with Councillors held to account and maybe Anti-20mph candidates standing.

If we don’t make our opposition to all round 20 mph limits known, I fear it will happen.

So I hope residents will make their opposition known, like they now are in Wales, which has also become the butt of jokes, some of which are highly amusing. But it isn’t funny that Arriva have cancelled some bus services owing to the effect of the 20 mph limit.

Councillors’ focus should be on providing better public services. 30 or 20 mph around Southend, keep it our decision. Not theirs!


Letter from: Rodney Hyne-Jones, Hadleigh Road, Leigh

SIR, there has been much comment in this paper about the passing of a law making parking on pavements subject to a fine. However there is little point in having a law if it is not enforced, which it clearly is not.

If you walk along many of the roads on the Marine Estate, for example, you can see that any parking attendant would have a field day. The same applies to time-restricted parking.

I feel sorry for people in disabled buggies or wheelchairs, as in many cases, they cannot pass for some of the cars being parked well over the footpath. They are then forced to go into the road with obvious safety risks.

Why can the law not be enforced? There are more than enough parking attendants patrolling the Broadway and Leigh Road who could quite easily venture further afield.

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