Readers' letters

SIR - Roy Harvey’s suggestion that “the Herald could lead a campaign for Craven that could be used on numerous beaches in the UK” is a good idea (‘We must act together to beat litter scourge’, Craven Herald, January 25).

However, as we in Craven are so far from the beaches, perhaps we could concentrate on Craven.

In Giggleswick Parish the Giggleswick Gardening Group (GGG) identified the need to keep the area tidy and free from litter.

In 2017 we collected 147 sacks of litter plus bulky items such as, a baby’s bath, a discarded old bike, a car jack, a shopping trolley and a sack of flowerpots!

We meet every first Monday of the month. Up to a dozen of us go out in pairs on set routes either circular routes or ‘walk there and litter-pick back’.

Two hours is the maximum time we are out (10am to noon).

The group is provided with litter-pickers, plastic sacks and hi-vis jackets.

The funding for the equipment has been provided by Skipton Building Society’s ‘Grassroots Giving’.

Other funds can be applied for from local parish councils’ ‘ward councillors’ grants’ that are sometimes available.

We meet at a central point where the routes are agreed, equipment distributed and health and safety advice is given out.

At the end of the session the bags are piled up in a convenient place for a Craven District Council operative to collect (usually within an hour of our finishing).

As a group, the GGG is affiliated to the national ‘Keep Britain Tidy’ project ‘Great British Spring clean’ at

Litter is an ongoing problem and it would be wonderful if the Herald could give publicity to and lead a campaign as Roy Harvey suggests.

We have monthly publicity in The Herald’s excellent ‘Neighbourhood News’ to announce where and when we meet.

Tony Carroll, Secretary, Giggleswick

Gardening Group (GGG)

SIR - It was gratifying to read in the paper that ‘Skipton Library is thriving and that the people still value libraries’ (‘Book in for new chapter in town library services, January 18).

Thanks must go in particular to all those volunteers, especially in the outlying villages, who have helped to keep this invaluable service going.

My concern is for the future, however.

I had hoped that libraries were being kept open in this way as a temporary expedient at a time of financial austerity resulting from the banking crisis.

I expected that we would soon get back to having a properly trained staff to run all our libraries. As time goes on, however, I begin to fear that the powers that be, having got away with it to this point, will begin to feel that a slightly second class service is good enough indefinitely.

Instead of seeking to restore more fully qualified staff as soon as possible, they may continue to rely too heavily on volunteers for the foreseeable future.

If the present situation is allowed to drift for much longer, in fact, it may not be possible to maintain even the present diluted arrangements, with volunteers supported by adequate number of professional workers, since who is going to risk training as a librarian when the job prospects are so poor?

There may still be tea and cakes at a library open day in a few years’ time, but will the service offered in other ways be of a standard that many of us have relied on over the decades?

Bob Adamson, Fallowfield, Skipton

SIR - I am very grateful to Mr Richard Colley for taking the time to raise the issue of walking aid returns in the last edition of the Craven Herald (‘Are we really throwing these away?).

He rightly reminds us all that the NHS has limited funds and all equipment lent should be returned once it is no longer required.

I am sorry that there was confusion when he returned his loaned pair of crutches back to A&E at Airedale Hospital some years ago.

I hope the work we have done within Airedale NHS Foundation Trust over recent times will make this less likely in the future.

All walking aids are clearly marked with a label reminding the user to return the aid once it is no longer required, and a reminder and additional information accompanies each walking aid issued.

This might also be a good time to remind all readers that we are always pleased to receive any walking aid, in any state of repair, back to the point of issue.

If this is difficult, most health centres and all physiotherapy departments are happy to receive used loan items.

Once received they can be serviced and, wherever safe, reissued.

Kelvin Whiting, Musculoskeletal and Women’s Health Service Manager,

Physiotherapy Professional Lead, Airedale NHS Foundation Trust

SIR - I am the daughter of the late Alan Brayshay, shown in the photo, alongside his identical twin brother John, in the Craven Herald’s Nostalgia section last week.

I am just emailing to let you know that the spelling of their surname is wrong - it should be Brayshay not Brayshaw.

Great photo by the way!

Cheryl Coates