IoS letters, emails & online postings (10 February 2013)

Share

Had the HS2 plan been linked to a Heathrow replacement hub airport at Birmingham and/or direct connection to HS1 at St Pancras, there would at least be a whiff of joined-up environmental thinking ("HS2: The hidden cost to Britain's wildlife", 23 February).

If the real problem is insufficient rail capacity, reopening the old Great Western Railway route from the North and/or adding extra tracks and lengthened platforms to the East and West Coast main lines would solve the problem at vastly less cost to the environment, and leave enough change from £33bn to electrify the entire rail network.

You say that HS2's route through Buckinghamshire will threaten Bechstein's bat; but Bernwood Forest is also one of the richest sites for moth and butterfly diversity in the UK. If a growing population continues to crave economic growth, all chance of saving wildlife, meeting carbon targets or reducing pollution is jettisoned.

David Smith

Clyro, Powys

Any transport infrastructure project will have an impact on wildlife. Are we going to cease all such projects because of this? It would be better to close down the M40 and turn the land back to pasture and woodland, and let people go by train instead.

Ian K Watson

Carlisle

This great railway line threatens countless unique habitats, digs up ancient woodlands and drives a wedge through lush green estate and imposes London time on the West Country. Whoops, wrong century... Isambard Kingdom Brunel's Britain must have faced the same concerns as HS2, which in time will demonstrate the even greater benefits.

John Vincent

Staines, Middlesex, and Cologne, Germany

Why should the Government define what marriage is ("Young Tories warn of rift over gay marriage", 3 February)? Marriage is within the private sphere and its meaning differs from person to person. Those who are religious see it to be a blessing from God; others marry as it is the "done thing"; some marry for financial security. It should be down to the individuals to define what type of arrangement they are to enter into. The role of the Government in the process is to uphold the contract individuals make. This position would have avoided the furore over same-sex marriage, as it would have taken the politics out of the equation.

James Paton

Billericay, Essex

Another protracted and costly inquiry, this time into the Mid-Staffordshire health trust. Meanwhile, responsibility for the failings of care is diffused among countless anonymous individuals. Nothing would do more to stimulate a change in culture than dismissals at all levels of management, and without generous pay-offs at taxpayers' expense.

Peter O'Neill

Cocking, West Sussex

The feature on Manx Gaelic was amusing but the 33 Manx Gaelic speakers referred to are people living in England and Wales for the 2011 census (i on Sunday, 3 February). The Isle of Man, a self-governing jurisdiction which is not part of the United Kingdom, held its own census in 2011. This showed there were 1,662 speakers of Manx Gaelic in the Isle of Man – significantly up from 165 in 1961, the lowest figure recorded. There have been radio programmes in the language for well over 30 years.

Brian Stowell

Douglas, Isle of Man

If your young have young of their own, does that render you out of touch ("The rise and rise of Mother's Ruin", 3 February)? The assertion gin is "no longer just a drink for grannies" implies that grandmothers, who may be novelists, diplomats or bosses of blue-chip companies, occupy a twilight zone of decrepitude. Ageism and sexism! Bottoms up!

Stephen Green

Birmingham

The boundaries of the Lake District National Park may be revised, but I would be amazed if they extended the Lake District as far as Hebden Bridge (The New Review, 3 February). The last time I looked at a map, it was firmly in West Yorkshire.

Anne Leaney

Appleby, Cumbria

Have your say

Letters to the Editor, The Independent on Sunday, 2 Derry Street, London W8 5HF. Email: sundayletters@independent.co.uk. Online: independent.co.uk/dayinapage/2013/February/10

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Engineering Project Manager

£35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is going through a period o...

Recruitment Genius: Senior Software Developer - Java

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This award-winning digital publishing solution...

Austen Lloyd: Construction Solicitor - City

Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: NON-CONTENTIOUS (0-2 PQE) - A rare opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Senior Financial Analyst

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Senior Financial Analyst is required to join...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

Fighting Ebola: When I'm home, I'll be able to touch people again - it's something you miss here

Catherine Mahony
 

Benedict Cumberbatch race row: Calling black people 'coloured' removes part of their humanity

Yemisi Adegoke
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
Why the league system no longer measures up

League system no longer measures up

Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert
Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Former one-day coach says he will ‘observe’ their World Cup games – but ‘won’t be jumping up and down’
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness