AS AN 88-years-old Solihull widower living alone, I give Age UK Solihull the full amount of praise it deserves for meeting the needs of many elderly members of the community at this difficult time in their lives.
The charity has put together schemes to help people with their shopping and by making regular calls to be sure they are safe and well.
It is a befriending policy carried out by Age UK Solihull staff and teams of volunteers ready to give their time and energy to ease the burden placed on elderly people during the pandemic.
I have a designated shopper who takes my order for food and brings them to the door of my home on the first floor of flats in Solihull.
She even took me to the surgery where I received my vaccination.
And once a week I am called by another volunteer to enjoy a chat and relieve the gloom of cold winter days in isolation.
I am grateful for all the help I receive and that, I feel sure, will be a sentiment shared by all the recipients of the charity’s generous goodwill and support.
It also shows concern for those who seek the company they miss living on their own.
J Seager, Solihull
FOLLOWING your recent article let’s be clear about the issue of Solihull police station.
The future of the station, or potentially lack of future, lies solely in the hands of the Police and Crime Commissioner.
The PCC can decide whether to save it or not and how much resource to put in it.
Sadly, they have systematically downgraded it. They have also closed 44 other stations at the same time.
With a massive national police recruitment programme benefiting the West Midlands, record funding from Government and another big increase in the police precept on our council tax, there are the resources to not just keep but expand the stations use.
In the last few weeks the PCC has sought to buck pass to variously Solihull council, the government and the mayor, when the decision is solely one for the PCC.
More than 1,000 people backed our campaign to save Solihull police station. I continue with my clear cut commitment that if I become the next PCC in May this station will not close.
Jay Singh-Sohal, PCC candidate for the West Midlands
IS YOUR Local parish council giving you value for your money?
You may not be aware that a certain amount of your council tax is given to your local parish council. This is an agreement known as a ‘precept’.
You will see the actual amount on your council tax statement.
Multiply that by how many households that are in your parish area and you will get an idea of the total amount that they receive.
If they have their own premises, they may also receive additional income from services provided and lettings etc.
I would like to suggest to everyone who pays this to attend some of your local parish council meetings and find out what you are getting for your money.
Ask them: –
· How much total income do they get?
· How many people are actually on the payroll and what are the salary ranges?
· What is the total expenditure?
· What happens to the balance?
· What has the parish council and its councillors recently actually done for the local community?
· What are their future plans to benefit the community?
I feel that this first tier of local government has been neglected for too long and needs to be brought up to date.
A McCluskey, Chemsley Wood
AS A scared 15 year-old, I have written to our local council calling on them to implement a weekly household food waste collation to divert this material from land fill as a matter of urgency.
This is something our community must act on now to reduce greenhouse gas emissions such as methane. Methane traps 84 times more heat in our atmosphere than CO2.
Whereas converting food waste into composting can increase the ability of healthy soils to pull even more CO2 out of our atmosphere to help not only reduce, but reverse climate change.
Others might argue that given the current situation of the coronavirus pandemic this is not the time for such action.
Yet, this could not be farther from the truth.
Pandemics are a sign that our relationship with nature is broken and we must not lose sight of our impending climate crisis.
I Bird, Shirley
IT SADDENED me to see the divisive language recently used by Julian Knight MP on Twitter especially as he chose to use it in the context of highlighting that mobile phone roaming charges are not to be introduced for travellers to the EU.
Whilst this is true, to highlight it as a benefit of leaving the EU and referring to a ‘Sun’ article as ‘Remoaner myth busting’ is simply codswallop.
We enjoyed charge free roaming as members of the EU for many years and there are no guarantees that this will continue.
Julian Knight voted to remain in the EU at the 2016 referendum and lost, as did 53,465 of his constituents.
His majority at the 2019 general election was 21,273.
Might I suggest that he is more careful in future and instead tries to focus on repairing the damage done by Brexit.
A Solihull ‘Remoaner’