Your si­lence is very wor­ry­ing

Rutherglen Reformer - - Reformer View -

In my let­ter to your pa­per dated April 13 I asked the SNP can­di­date a sim­ple ques­tion about her govern­ment’s Foot­ball Bill.

I was dis­ap­pointed not to re­ceive a re­ply, how­ever can ap­pre­ci­ate she may not al­ways read the let­ters page so de­cided to write an email ask­ing her the same sim­ple ques­tion ‘do you sup­port the Foot­ball Bill, yes or no?’. Again no an­swer.

The fact she has com­pletely failed to re­spond to a gen­uine ques­tion about a piece of leg­is­la­tion passed by her SNP govern­ment is very wor­ry­ing.

If Ms Haughey does op­pose the bill why doesn’t she just tell us, or is she happy to con­tinue tak­ing or­ders from SNP high com­mand and leav­ing her con­vic­tions at home.

Or is it in­deed the case SNP can­di­dates are more of­fended by foot­ball fans than poverty? El­iz­a­beth-Anne Cal­laghan, By email. words of the peo­ple who lived it. We’d like the peo­ple of the UK to look in their at­tics, rum­mage around in their garages, and search their sheds for old let­ters and post­cards. Some might be from cen­turies ago; oth­ers might have just been de­liv­ered last week. We’d like to know what th­ese let­ters have to say – from the first time some­one trav­elled abroad, to the im­pact of con­flict.

If you find some­thing bril­liant in your own fam­ily let­ters, you can up­load it ei­ther through http://www. royal­mail­group.com/let­ter­so­fourlives or by send­ing a pho­to­copy to Freep­ost RTSA-BEGA-AAZB, Let­ters of our lives, River­side House - River­side Es­tate, Sir Thomas Lon­g­ley Road, Med­way City Es­tate, Rochester, ME2 4FN to be doc­u­mented as part of this fas­ci­nat­ing project.

I can’t wait to read all the let­ters and post­cards, and to share in the pride of the fam­i­lies who’ve found a story to tell us. Lucy Worsley TV his­to­rian and chief cu­ra­tor, His­toric Royal Palaces

last week, although was left con­fused by some of Clare Haughey’s com­ments.

On the de­bate on how we pro­tect lo­cal ser­vices and stop the cuts Ms Haughey claimed that by in­tro­duc­ing the 50p top rate of tax we would see an ex­o­dus of peo­ple mov­ing down south. I do not be­lieve this and ev­i­dence from Den­mark sug­gests that it takes an ad­di­tional tax rate of 70 per cent be­fore peo­ple are pre­pared to move.

The SNP sup­ported the in­crease in the ad­di­tional rate to 50 per cent be­fore the ref­er­en­dum and give no con­vinc­ing rea­son for their u-turn.

I for one am in favour of rais­ing taxes on the rich­est one per cent if it means stop­ping any more cuts be­ing forced on us from the Scot­tish Govern­ment. Dr Richard Wat­son Cam­bus­lang mis­lead­ing vot­ers across Scot­land not once but twice.

They have had nearly a decade in of­fice to re­form and re­place the coun­cil tax but in­stead com­pletely ig­nored it.

Dur­ing this time the SNP govern­ment has slashed fund­ing to coun­cils which in turn has re­sulted in lo­cal ser­vices be­ing af­fected.

Rather than boast­ing about ‘tweak­ing’ lo­cal govern­ment fi­nance, Ms Haughey would have gained some cred­i­bil­ity if she was straight with peo­ple about the SNP govern­ment’s dis­mal record when it comes to fund­ing the lo­cal ser­vices we all rely on. Chris Hester Ruther­glen

In Hamil­ton, the town where I live, 45 year old David Caine lay dead in his flat for weeks and no friends or rel­a­tives came for­ward to deal with his fu­neral.

The lo­cal coun­cil had to take over to pro­vide the most ba­sic of all fu­ner­als, a pau­pers fu­neral. This in­cludes a cof­fin, and trans­port to the cre­ma­to­rium by un­der­tak­ers, who do a read­ing or poem to send him off, with no­body such as a min­is­ter, priests or fu­neral cel­e­brant, present to record pub­licly any­thing about the life of David.

The man­age­ment and cus­tomers of the lo­cal pub that David used reg­u­larly, were deeply moved by this sit­u­a­tion and had a col­lec­tion to pro­vide the money for him to have a more dig­ni­fied send off.

In Cly­de­bank this week, the fam­ily of 15 year old Paige Do­herty, who was bru­tally mur­dered, were sup­ported in their grief by friends and neigh­bours who raised the funds to pay for a dig­ni­fied send off for Paige, with a car­riage and white horses and the sup­port of over 600 peo­ple at the fu­neral.

In Glas­gow, the fam­ily of the Mus­lim shop­keeper Asad Shah who was bru­tally mur­dered for dar­ing to send Easter good wishes to peo­ple of other faiths, were also gen­er­ously sup­ported by their lo­cal com­mu­nity to pay for his fu­neral and a me­mo­rial for him.

All of th­ese in­stances of Crowd Fund­ing of fu­ner­als serve to re­mind us all, that the cost of a fu­neral is no longer af­ford­able by many fam­i­lies in the UK. Hav­ing to find thou­sands of pounds at a few days no­tice, for an un­ex­pected fu­neral, is send­ing hun­dreds of fam­i­lies into debt which they should not have to in­cur.

When I launched this pe­ti­tion I said that a ba­sic fu­neral to­day now costs £3,500 and is pre­dicted to cost £6,800 by 2024 and over £11,000 by 2031. Surely it can­not be ac­cept­able that ex­ces­sive prof­its can be made from be­reaved fam­i­lies for fu­neral ser­vices that have be­come so high that fam­i­lies have to de­pend on Crowd Fund­ing to send their loved ones off with some dig­nity.

Our par­lia­ments will only take this scan­dal se­ri­ously if they be­lieve that the pub­lic at large are se­ri­ous about want­ing the multi-bil­lion pound fu­neral busi­ness in­ves­ti­gated.

I will be away for a few days and I hope when I re­turn that many more of you will have taken a few min­utes to en­cour­age oth­ers to sign this pe­ti­tion.

www.change.org/p/uk-and-scot­tish­par­lia­ments-should-in­ves­ti­gate-why­fu­ner­als-cost-so-much? Max Cruick­shank Hamil­ton Dozens of peo­ple took to the Ruther­glen Re­former Face­book page to com­mend or ques­tion South La­nark­shire Coun­cil’s pri­or­i­ties with the in­tro­duc­tion of cy­cle lanes on Cam­bus­lang Main Street.

Ash­ley Steele wrote:“This is ridicu­lous. As if the traf­fic on the Main Street isn’t bad enough at rush hour.

“This is go­ing to re­duce the peo­ple driv­ing along the Main Street, there­fore shops suf­fer, and will see more id­iots us­ing the qui­eter roads as a short cut.

“I thought that they were pos­si­bly pro­vid­ing more park­ing fa­cil­i­ties for the train sta­tion. Then I thought, don’t be daft, we’ve only been ask­ing for that for years. Who asked for the cy­cle lanes? The ones that were painted were fine!”

Ron Atkins agreed, adding:“I am both a driver and a cy­clist com­muter. I am not im­pressed with this change with ei­ther hat on.

“So much for the cost cut­ting at SLC when they can waste thou­sands chang­ing a road lay­out that has been fine for decades and would have been fine for decades to come.

“Oh, and what will hap­pen when busses jam up the sin­gle lane left at the bus stops and the fire en­gines come up to an­swer an emer­gency, or an am­bu­lance is try­ing to save some­one’s life; did they think of this?

“When cy­cling I am fine at the side of the road and find most driv­ers are de­cent and con­sid­er­ate; as I try to be to driv­ers when cy­cling.”

But Jill Mor­ton said more peo­ple need to be­come ac­tive com­muters, walk­ing and cy­cling around the town.

She said:“Fi­nally de­cent cy­cle in­fras­truc­ture. Paint­ing a line on the road is not enough. This is much safer.

“It would be good if the next step was proper seg­re­gated cy­cle routes.... If you build it, they will come.”

Craig Green added: “Fan­tas­tic news and great to see. Some proper in­fras­truc­ture for cy­clists rather than hav­ing to cy­cle along poxy painted lines which just about cover the pot holes. Money well spent.”

Drop­mealine Left­con­fused Wil­ly­ouapol­o­gise? Funer­al­costs

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