This MP has done sterling work for us

Iwas extremely disappointed to read the letter from Coun Chris Ord criticising Labour MP Dave Anderson ("MP is preaching a message of hypocrisy", Voice of the North, June 1).

Iwas extremely disappointed to read the letter from Coun Chris Ord criticising Labour MP Dave Anderson ("MP is preaching a message of hypocrisy", Voice of the North, June 1).

Let's get things clear here: the people of Blaydon have an excellent and hard-working MP.

Since he was elected in 2005, Dave Anderson has worked industriously to protect our public assets, fight for fair pay deals for our nurses and health care professionals, help the negotiations to protect the pensions of local government workers and campaigned to improve transport provision within the region.

This is in addition to the role he has played gaining funding for schools, supporting constituents and representing the people of Blaydon constituency.

I hope the Lib Dems will stop constantly seeking to undermine this work and start working to improve our area for the people of the North East.

SHEILA DONOVAN, Crawcrook, Gateshead

We make lots of information public

IMUST correct the wrong impression given by Jim Cousins MP in his letter about the Freedom of Information Act ("MPs shutting themselves out from openness", Voice of the North, June 1).

As a public body delivering a Government programme, we endeavour to be open and transparent in all that we do. To this end, minutes from our board meetings are made available on our website, and we also publish a number of studies and reports, such as research findings. We are also planning to publish board papers and agendas on the site.

Due to the nature of the work that we are undertaking, however, on occasion, we cannot publish particular documents, such as certain board papers, as doing so will compromise commercial confidentiality.

We welcome requests for information and are happy to respond in a timely manner, providing as much detail as possible.

ANNE MULROY, Director, Bridging NewcastleGateshead, 1st Floor, Central Exchange Buildings, 128 Grainger Street, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 5AF (website:

It's all about giving our pockets a warming

MAY I provide a layman's look at global warming? There are so many theories, so many beliefs and contradictory views. It's like a religion and the zealots will not be moved from their preconceived beliefs.

They have no doubt that global warming exists and that it is man-made by carbon emissions, and they throw out hysterical catchphrases: your carbon footprint, save the planet, we must act before it is too late.

Schoolchildren have been shown a video made by Al Gore on the subject, which is full of glaring inaccuracies. The Government is instilling fear into the population, which is just more moral justification for increasing taxation. Vested interests are making millions out of our fear.

Everyone knows there appears to be a change in the climate, then comes the enigma: nobody knows what really causes it, only that it was happening long before man was on Earth, so human activity cannot be 100% responsible.

There are thousands of factors involved in climate change, carbon emissions being only one. We are on a long learning curve to grasp a real understanding, but it would appear climate change is cyclical and it is disingenuous to think humans can stop it.

So to Sir Nicholas Stern: not a scientist, but an adviser on economics to the Government, who commissioned him to report on the costs involved in climate change. In the final draft, as in all Government reports, caveats were taken out and parts embellished to vastly enhance the impact.

Will green taxes be ring-fenced for use only on eco-friendly projects and if the Government interpretation is proved wrong, will it refund them?

Perhaps the scientists should be sent away together to further probe the issue, without threats from Government officials of removing grants if they don't report back with the answers the United Kingdom, the European Union and the United Nations want.

Unfortunately, all politicians are into climate change. So you pays your money and you gets no choice.

GORDON TOMLINSON, Seaham, County Durham

Council must make amends to Chapmans

IWAS appalled to read about the plight of the Chapman family in a national newspaper on Saturday. It beggars belief that, judging by the photos, a perfectly decent English family should be terrorised because they have ginger hair.

I worked abroad in Europe for many years and was always relieved that such stories of cretinous British behaviour never reached mainland European papers. The Chapman case is one of the worst I have read about, and I am in my 60s.

There is an underbelly of morons on our council estates who make the lives of people like the Chapmans a nightmare, yet councils up and down the country seem trapped by a plethora of regulations which prevent them from acting swiftly and effectively.

It appears (the council) has been failing totally in its duty of care to this family.

Surely, there must be someone in Newcastle's housing department with enough authority to re-house the Chapmans in an area where residents have enough education to allow them to live in peace, even if that means allotting enough money to buy a private house in a middle class area. Shock, horror, this correspondent has mentioned class! I am a member of the Labour Party, but am not deluded enough to believe that daily life in a middle class residential area is not safer than existence on a council estate, which is home to the grunting morons who tarnish the name of this country.

In the light of what appears to be a total failure of the council in their duty of care, is there no company or benefactor in Newcastle who will come to the rescue and lift this decent family out of misery and persecution?

Isn't it time to send them to private schools where discipline is present, at the expense of the council?


Our littered county

ISINCERELY hope that Northumberland County Council and Alnwick Council will be looking to employ the old fashioned road sweepers in the near future because when the Rubbish Taliban and the Recycle Gestapo get their feet under the table the incidents of fly tipping will rocket.

The highways, byways and hedgerows of Northumberland are already awash with pizza cartons and plastic bags; it will only get worse as the taxpayers refuse to pay yet another stealth tax under this Government.

ROBIN THOMPSON, Amble, Northumberland,

It's a gas!

ILOVE the little quizzes that The Journal embeds into the news columns. They really get the brain working in the morning. Take the item headed "Cylinder explodes" in this morning's paper, for example.

It tells us that four Newcastle homes were evacuated as there was "a setalin cylinder on fire". This one was easy-peasy. I have the answer! It should read "an acetylene cylinder" was on fire.

Do I win a prize?


Editor's Note: No prize, Mr Pickard, just thanks for bringing the error to our attention and providing the opportunity for us to apologise for the howler.


David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer