I AM grateful to W Ian Thompson for his letter in the Keighley News, responding to my letter the week before, condemning the use of inferior building materials in the late 1960s building of Airedale General Hospital. Despite what he says, I still condemn the 1960s architects and engineers (I don’t blame the builders – they do as they are told).

Mr Thompson says that the use of this inferior concrete, Siporex, was an experiment. I find this utterly preposterous. Such an experiment should have been on a very small structure on publicly-owned land and not throughout the entire range of hospital buildings.

These buildings are far too important, nay vital, to be treated as an experiment, and likewise the sister hospital in Cheshire. Thousands of local people go there for healing and healthcare (me included) and some of the country’s finest medics work there.

Mr Thompson says it was known at the time that Siporex had a lifespan of 30 years. If that was known at the time, why an experiment? And why on earth was it used?

Again I say this was highly irresponsible, because we taxpayers are now faced with a multi-million-pound rebuild, which would not have been necessary had proper materials been used in the first place.

Can we be sure that decent building materials are to be used in the rebuild, so that the hospital can last much longer?

I do not compare York Minster with the hospital. I only used it to illustrate that the medieval builders must have had higher building standards than what we have today – despite all the technology, power plant machinery and knowledge that we have, that they did not.

Jens Hislop, Haworth

* Email your letters to alistair.shand@keighleynews.co.uk