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Saturday, 19 April 2014

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Family’s plea to keep Victoria Cross medal on public display

SIR – Re your article in the November 29 edition regarding Abraham Acton’s Victoria Cross medal, my family and I feel very strongly that Uncle Abraham’s medal should be kept on public display for all the people to see.

The family gave the medal to the people of Whitehaven and their wishes should be honoured.

Mrs M E HILL (nee Acton)

Mrs M McBRIDE (nee Acton)

West Heath, Birmingham

SIR – The cruel winds of change are encompassing almost every aspect of our lives at the moment but I would like readers to spare a thought for all those sailors, both local and international, who unfortunately lost their lives in the Irish Sea during this past year. For those families, this Christmas will be a desperately sad time.

It is now a year since the cargo ship M/V Swanland, carrying limestone from Colywyn Bay, to Cowes on the Isle of Wight passed through our waters, only to break her back during an appalling storm off the coast of Liverpool, with the loss of five Russian sailors, none of whose bodies have been retrieved.

Only through persistent petitioning was the Government persuaded to reprieve Crosby Coastguard Station from complete closure, offering a bare bones substitute, which at least was able to participate in the partial rescue on that catastrophic day, the RAF search and rescue helicopter piloted by Prince William rescuing the remaining two sailors.

Despite all the warnings and in light of public abhorrence, the RAF search and rescue service based in Wales is to be scrapped at the end of Prince William’s training and put out to private tender.

We weren’t impressed then and we are less than impressed now; we should strive to influence our destinies through persistent public pressure on this Government to change the destructive courses they seem bent on pursuing both locally and nationally.

Destiny needn’t call unexpectedly, if we continue to ask ‘Why?’

Ms Eileen WEIR

Queen Street, Whitehaven

SIR – In your edition of October 25, you featured an article about a local person’s memories of Whitehaven in the 1960s. The headline was “Life in the 60s’’ and mentioned the Tow Bar in Nethertown.

I am researching the history of the Tow Bar and would welcome an opportunity to meet up with this person and discuss their memories in greater detail.

I would also be pleased to hear from anyone else who has stories to tell about the Tow Bar, or has photographs they would be willing to share. Please get in touch.

Ron FOWLER

13 Lakeland View, Nethertown,

Egremont CA22 2UH

01946 822821

SIR – As we approach the end of 2012 I thought it was important to once again thank the local community, both individuals and organisations, for their continued and generous support for Eden Valley Hospice and Eden House, Cumbria’s children’s hospice.

We are a charity dedicated to providing specialist care to adults from the local area and children throughout Cumbria, as well as caring for their families, friends and carers. We believe that every detail, every moment and every person matters. This belief allows us to achieve the highest standards of nursing and medical care, to sustain quality of life and dignity and to give help to people when they need it most.

Quite simply, we couldn’t do what we do without the ongoing support of local people. In particular, we are grateful to those who have made donations, taken part in our fundraising events, volunteered their time or simply championed our cause. The tough economic climate can present daunting and significant challenges for charities, but with the support of the local community we will endeavour to continue to care for local people, young and old in 2013.

This year culminates with the annual Light up a Life Services across Cumbria. Once again this campaign has been very well supported and allowed the lives and memories of lost loved ones to be remembered and celebrated at this special time of year.

On behalf of everyone at Eden Valley Hospice, both staff and volunteers, I would like to thank everyone for their support and wish a peaceful New Year to all.

Janet FERGUSON

Chief Executive

Eden Valley Hospice, Carlisle

SIR – There seems to be a new telephone scam out. I received a call the other day telling me that I would have money put into my bank account following a dispute that the bank should have told me about.

They wanted my account number plus my security numbers so that money could be paid in, they said.

I did not give these details and they rang off. A few minutes later they rang again to ask for those details, I said no way.

It sounded as if the call was from a different country. I want to warn people not to have anything to do with them even if they tell you, like they told me, it was a thousand pounds. They told me after I asked them several times who they were they said they were from UK Finance.

Pat STEELE

Croftlands, Bigrigg

SIR – Whitehaven First Responders wish to thank everyone who supported us by fundraising or raising our profile over the last 12 months, especially CN Group and The Whitehaven News and the RAOB Whitehaven.

We are a small group of eight volunteers attending as support to the ambulance service to 999 emergencies.

We would like to wish our townspeople good health and best wishes for 2013.

To learn more about the role of a responder visit www.nwas-responders.info/

Whitehaven First Responders

SIR – For some weeks now, my sister and I have basked in the warmth, colour and smells of Christmas within the welcoming walls of the Westminster on Lowther Street. But to keep our eyes averted from the pathetic Christmas trees in St Nicholas Gardens has become a burden too far.

We can stand it no longer without comment, for they take “minimalistic’’ to new levels, with a single strand of blue lights on one and nothing on the other, apart from a significant tilt to starboard!

Tradition was that every Christmas in our schools at Hensingham and the Valley, we used to belt out Tannenbaum to the rousing tune of The Red Flag.

The branches in St Nicholas Gardens are lovely, I guess, but so unadorned and lacking cheer that the festive season seems to have passed them by. They shout recession, depression, lack of cash and a sad air of “are we bovvered.’’ Instead, they ought to be a symbol proclaiming industry, colour, hope, joy and laughter.

So I call upon the help of all the schools in the town to rally round and save this pitiful effort of the council. Maybe for next year you could share your wonderful ideas with us all and produce some super decorations to hang on this naked greenery – angels, stars, camels, birds, holly, candles, ribbons etc. I’m sure your national art and craft curriculum will incorporate it.

So a Happy New Year to you all, yes, and even to Copeland Council members.

Mamie ADAIR,

Moresby

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