12 surreylive.news NEWS & MAIL WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 9, 2020 YOUR VIEWS Letters the belief that retail work is a female role. There have been no such reports of similar measures being implemented in the distribution centres. This is a matter of health and safety and should not be seen as an opportunity to reduce costs. The decision is particularly galling when it has been widely reported that supermarket sales have been at a record high during coronavirus. For years, Leigh Day has been acting on behalf of store workers, most of whom are women, who we claim are paid unfairly in comparison to their predominantly male distribution centre colleagues. We hear first-hand from our clients, how physically and emotionally demanding retail work already is, and this is an added pressure that staff shouldn’t have to meet. Instead of having more work piled on top of them, store workers should be given the recognition, respect and pay they deserve. Children may have questions and worries about going back to school during Coronavirus and we’ve got advice to help. With younger children, have conversations about what going to school might be like. You might walk a different way or start at a different time; the school might look different or the adults may be dressed differently. Ask your children about what they’re looking forward to most about going back to school and then manage some of their expectations. You can also try to readjust their bed times a week before starting school to get into a healthy routine. For older children, encourage them to talk to a trusted adult about their feelings – this doesn’t have to be face-to-face, they may find it easier writing their thoughts down. Rolling news and social media can cause a lot of anxiety; remind them of the facts and explain what false or sensationalised information is. It’s important that they don’t take their mobile, tablets of other devices to bed as this may stop them sleeping. There’s lots more advice and support available online too, at www.nspcc.org.uk or for children at www.childline.org.uk, so remember, we’re still here on the frontline for children, but we’re here to help you too. Local opinion should override “one size fits all” “caricature” costumes. Last year’s (female) soloist for example, performed dressed as a Victorian Admiral. It reminded me that, in Victorian times, Gilbert & Sullivan operettas (again with soloists in rather comical costumes) were hugely popular because they took a satirical swing at some of the more absurd British attitudes. “The Mikado” for example pokes fun at British (not Japanese) pomposity and attitudes towards class. And they were so successful because Victorian Brits thought it was perfectly acceptable to LAUGH at themselves. For many years, Land of Hope and Glory and Rule Britannia have, for most of the Promenaders, been an opportunity to enjoy singing well known but slightly ridiculous songs at the top of your voice and to perhaps gently smile at some of the old fashioned attitudes. In other words we know it’s all very much “over the top” and that’s what makes it funny. Sadly, some people have fallen into the trap of taking it all far too seriously and have, as a result, ended up looking somewhat pompous and rather ridiculous. I think they’ve forgotten the lesson of the Victorian satirists and why “Mikado” was (and is) so popular. By all means, have fun belting out some very singable tunes, but don’t take things too seriously and sometimes, just be prepared to laugh at yourself. FLEET Road was closed on 24 August at five days notice from the news in your newspaper. This gave little time for passengers to be informed. On Monday morning there were no notices at the existing bus stops, so some passengers were waiting at them. The road did not in fact close till after lunch. Around 11am, I saw a no 10 to Church Crookham using Albert St and a no 7 to Aldershot using Fleet Road. Hart should have put up notices at the key bus stops. Did Hart Council have proper consultation with the two bus companies, Stagecoach and Reading Buses? The existing bus stops, which I hope to see re-opened soon, are very well placed. I used a cafe in Fleet Road today. No cafes have set up any tables in the road. The whole area seemed even more empty than before the closure, but it is now made really ugly by masses of garish red and white barriers, even in the middle of the new pedestrian area. Local opinion should surely override the “one size fits all” government guidance, which, issued from Whitehall, can take no account of local geography. Some towns such as Reading and Newbury have satisfactorily made their main streets pedestrian-only [Newbury has a bus station nearby and next to its library], but in other towns like Fleet and Farnham, the road layout simply does not work. Albert Street is down a slope from Fleet Road and is not at all convenient for shoppers at Sainsbury’s or Waitrose. Bus passengers should have priority in public policy, to save the environment, not be a last-minute afterthought. If the road must stay closed, buses could easily still run through at a special speed limit of 5 mph. But I would keep the road open. Centralisation of policy has been a key problem for the UK in this Covid 19 period – we need less of it, not more. Centralisation of policy has been a key problem for the UK in this Covid 19 period. Lara Kennedy Solicitor in the Leigh Day Tesco Equal Pay team Malcolm Chase Time to recognise care workers’ contribution Are these councils too complex and costly? LAST week [September 1 to 4] marked Professional Care Workers Week. It feels very timely to have a week dedicated to recognising the efforts of care workers and acknowledging the extraordinary work they do. Care and support workers have a challenging and rewarding job that is different every day and over the past months, in the face of Covid19, they have shown how exceptional they are. Together we clapped for our NHS, and our carers were included in that outpouring of public gratitude. Our research shows that three quarters (74 percent) of adults in England believe care home staff do a brilliant job, they also overwhelmingly agree they are undervalued (81 percent) and should be paid better (80 percent). It’s great to see society recognise them for their invaluable contribution – it’s time that government does too, and that they are rewarded adequately. Helen Westerman A REPORT suggests merger of mid sized county and district councils could save £126 million over five years with example of Hertfordshire with 11 district councils with 11 CEOs and planning departments all “with a lot of complexity” and with “a lot of cost” so there is “compelling” financial case for unitary authorities said a member of County Councils Network. After vast Covid expense, government is looking to save cash. Lessons can be learned, or not, from Bracknell Forest Council when Berkshire was abolished and Surrey County is considering its options. With sprawl of Hart with its Yateley, Fleet, Blackwater attachments, two of which putting together neighbourhood plans and Rushmoor sprawl, are these councils too complex and costly? NSPCC head of local campaigns Campaign urges us to be aware of water use ACCORDING to a new survey, 46 percent of Brits believe their household uses under 20 litres of water a day, which is roughly equivalent to taking a two-minute shower. In fact, the true figure is closer to 142 litres per person per day meaning an average family of four could use more than 500 litres each day! This summer we saw a surge in demand for water, as more people stayed at home and enjoyed the hot weather in parts of the country. This is why Water UK and water efficiency experts Waterwise have joined forces to encourage people to think about the amount of water they are using. This new campaign offers simple hints and tips to help people cut back, saving energy, money and protecting the environment - more information can be found online and across social media. We all have a role to play in saving water and even small changes, such as using a watering can instead of a hose or cutting the length of your shower, can make a big difference. Keith Winkworth By email Britons mustn’t forget to laugh at ourselves Alan Hilliar Vic Rayner Cranmore Close, Aldershot Executive director, National Care Forum Workers should have respect they deserve RE: Aldershot News & Mail Point of View - “Rude Britannia” There’s been some heat (rather than light) generated over whether or not we should be celebrating “Britishness” by singing Victorian patriotic ballads at the Last Night of the Proms. I think there’s a bit more to this issue. Consider for example that, for some years, the soloists at the Last Night of the Proms have deliberately been dressed in How to help children with return to school NEWS that from Monday (August 24) employees in Tesco Express and Metro stores will be expected to undertake cleaning duties is a stark reminder that these staff are undervalued, overlooked and vulnerable to stereotypical assumptions. Cleaning is often characterised as women’s work, and reinforces GOING back to school can be scary for children whatever their age and it can be an anxious time for parents too. School closures during the pandemic had meant that some children have not had the opportunity to visit their new schools and classes. Christine McGourty Chief Executive, Water UK Malcolm Chase Nicci Russell Kent Road, Fleet Managing Director, Waterwise PRINTED AND DISTRIBUTED BY PRESSREADER PressReader.com +1 604 278 4604 . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . 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