Letters: Tinder-dry, long grass, additional fire hazard

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Unmown grass may provide a beautiful barrier in the city and suburbs (Ann Hayes, Letters, 28 /06 /18), but is potentially lethal in the countryside.

Rural lanes have no pavements, no streetlights, National Speed Limits of 60mph, and are often narrow and twisty.

If you live or walk in the Sheffield countryside, you currently have no safety margin from speeding traffic - ironic in the Outdoor City which promotes walking and running as healthy leisure.

If you are disabled, like me, then diving into dense undergrowth to escape speeding motorists with obscured visibility, is both nerve-wracking and unsafe.

The maintenance of all highway verges is required by Statute to be kept accessible and safely usable by all legitimate highway users. This includes vulnerable users, such as walkers, horse riders, cyclists and disabled people. The Amey contractual obligation is to clear two metres width of grass and foliage, at least twice per year, and more if necessary.

Notwithstanding all the accumulated rubbish, and the spread of invasive weeds (a further Act of Parliament exists to prevent these seeding into crops and grazing), the countryside verges in this city are an illegal and dangerous disgrace. The tinder-dry, long grass is an additional fire hazard.

It was no surprise to also read that thousands of Sheffield motorists ignore road signs, because in the rural areas, signage is too often invisible, anyway.

Ms R. Owen

By email

Living within our environmental means

The reinstatement of the Labour whip to Jared O’Mara with barely a tap on the knuckles is a cynical move by the Labour Party. The long, drawn out investigation has been an insult to the people of Sheffield Hallam Constituency, leaving them effectively without representation for far too long.

And the result is an insult to the people who were on the receiving end of his homophobic and mysoginistic comments. The Labour Party appears to have learned nothing from the #metoo campaign.

The voters of Sheffield Hallam have every right to feel let down. This decision will also prompt voters elsewhere to reflect on the values - or lack thereof - that Labour has displayed in this case.

Given the huge uncertainties in UK politics at present, there may well be an early opportunity for voters to make their views heard at the ballot box. If so, I will be ready as always to promote the values of true democracy and living within our environmental means that form the much-needed vision of The Green Party.

Peter Garbutt

Green Party Candidate

Sheffield Hallam Constituency

News of rural bus services in the Peak

Some news which I hope will be of interest to you readers, concerning the further decimation of our rural bus services in the Peak District:

From 22 July, High Peak buses based in Dove Holes , plan to cut the number of journeys on the 65 services between Buxton and Sheffield from 7 to 2 each day.

There will no longer be a service to enable people who live in Tideswell, Litton, Hucklow, Foolow, Eyam, Stoney Middleton, Calver and Grindleford to get to and from work in Sheffield, and the last bus back from Sheffield will be at 2pm; the last bus from Buxton will be at 12.25. The Sunday service will disappear completely

High Peak buses only took over the 65 service last year, and it provides a lifeline to residents in the villages along its route.

I have spoken to High Peak, and they say that the cuts are because there will no longer be any financial support from Derbyshire County Council.

The Council just say that they are retendering the service, and won’t give any further details. Meanwhile the cuts will take effect in two weeks time, leaving people totally stranded.

What is even more insulting to local communities is that the elected County Councillors, including the local Councillor Judith Twigg, are totally unaware of what is happening. It is all being pushed through by faceless Council officers.

Peter O’Brien

Grindleford Parish Councillor

Unfortunately the world runs on facts

I read Cyril Olsen`s letter (Sheffield Telegraph 28 Jun 18) with dismay, he seems to be wishing the EU to disintegrate, which shows just how quickly people forget history.

The whole idea of the EU was to bind Europe together so the risk of yet another intra-European war would be averted (NATO is about war with a country or bloc outside). For all its faults the EU has undoubtedly been successful in that endeavour, so, whatever happens vis Brexit, any wish for the EU to disintegrate is myopic in the extreme. But, more frustratingly, Mr Olsen conveniently forgets two things, the first is that the UK has asked to leave the EU it has not been told to leave, and therefore the EU is under no obligation to look out for the UK in any way whatsoever. Its obligation, in every way, is solely to its members.

The second flaw in Mr Olsen`s letter is that the EU referendum result was close in anyone`s book, 52% to 48%, and therefore what was said in the campaign obviously influenced the result. The fact is that almost nothing that Leave promised or predicted is actually coming to pass, Turkey is not joining the EU, the NHS is not getting £350million a week from any EU dividend, and the UK is not getting a “free” free trade deal with the EU. All promises / predictions made by Leave, and they never even mentioned the NI border, an intractable problem if ever there was one. One wonders just how bad it has to get before Leave`s mandate is weakened or totally demolished, I believe it is already fatally diminished.

The basic problem is that Brexit is Nationalism, and Nationalism isn`t about facts it`s about feelings. Unfortunately the world runs on facts.

Justin Smith

S35