Parking bays for disabled were full

I had reason to visit Holy Family School for an appointment and being disabled I expected there to be at least one disabled parking bay. There were in fact two, both of which housed the school mini-buses! Neither one displayed blue badges and as the car park was full we had to park down by Cliffe Castle and walk back up to the school for the appointment.

When I asked the receptionist why the buses were allowed to park there when they had no badges I was told that they weren't allowed, they just did it. I'm one of the "lucky" disabled people of this town in that I can manage to slowly walk short distances (while in some considerable pain) but what about those who can't? Those who rely on a carer pushing them in a wheelchair or who are simply too disabled to park as far away as we had to? For a school which professes to care for the community it certainly does not care for those in the community who are less able to hike up the hill to them!

Jayne Pickard Hainworth Wood Road, Keighley

Holy Family head teacher, Conor Davis, offered his apologies on behalf of the school. "This lady has every right to make a complaint. The school is desperately short of car parking spaces but we still need to guarantee these disabled spaces are kept clear. This has shown that we must do better."

Smoking ban justification

I note with interest that the local arm of the anti-smoking industry now openly admits that the justification for the discomfort and humiliation of millions of smokers is solely to force them to give up a habit which has not only been perfectly legal for hundreds of years, but also contributes more than 10 per cent of the NHS budget.

In a free society, the anti-smoking law could only have been forced through on the basis that smoking had a damaging third party effect - the so called "passive smoking" theory invented by the Nazis and discredited many years ago. The evidence that any such effect exists has been exposed as fraudulent by examination of the numerous studies done.

The claims of supporters of this theory have become so embarrassing to mainstream abolitionists that they now prefer not to draw attention to them, in the hope that the end result of fewer people smoking justifies the means of procuring it. Now, where have I heard that argument before?

George Speller Hill Top Road, Hainworth, Keighley

Road would bring pollution

I would like to give the arguments against an eastern relief road.

It would destroy Park Wood. Owls, woodpeckers, bats, rabbits, squirrels, mice, beetles, trees, mosses, fungi, all live in this wood. It is a habitat, an amenity, a treasure.

The road would bring pollution, danger and noise to local people. It would run over or next to Keighley Worth Valley Railway, Park Wood Primary School and all the businesses and houses along Park Wood Street.

The road would not solve Keighley's traffic congestion problems. It would clog up itself within years. It would shift congestion upstream/downstream to Thwaites and Ingrow. There would be horrendous congestion during the years of construction.

It will not bring real wealth to Keighley. Property prices will fall. Worthwhile projects will not receive funding. As a place to live and work Keighley will lose its attractiveness.

The Airedale Masterplan makes no mention of destroying Park Wood by building a road through it. On the contrary, on page 41 in its "Woodland Parks" section it recommends the following: "At Park Wood, above Keighley, the former mining areas, rifle range and quarries should be reinforced with further woodland planting and pathways to create accessible space and an improved green backdrop for Keighley. I rest my case.

Eric Yaffy, Thwaites Brow Road, Long Lee

Woodland is a town asset

Helping Keighley traffic to flow more freely is a good idea.

But not at the expense of one of the most precious attributes this town has, namely Park Wood.

Very few towns can boast of an ancient woodland so near the centre. It is not important just to the people who live in the Parkwood and Long Lee areas. It is an asset to the whole town. It can be seen from many parts of Keighley. It provides a home for wildlife. It cuts down traffic noise and absorbs pollutants.

It's a beautiful place. It even improves the quality of that essential, the air we breathe.

Bradford Council is urging us to let them know where they can plant more trees, surely a pointless exercise if they are considering chopping down the trees we already have. A one way system around Keighley could be achieved without making a road through Park Wood. After all, both Worth Way and Hard Ings Road were originally built as bypasses.

A one way system which made use of them, as well as North Street and Cavendish Street, is a much better answer to speeding up the journey.

Judith Brooksbank Town councillor, Long Lee and Parkwood

Only Half the grant story

Contrary to Conservative claims, Labour councillors did not oppose the allocation of £100,000 for ward investment, indeed they proposed doubling the amount available to support local communities but this idea was rejected out of hand by the Tories and Liberal Democrats.

Typically, Councillors Hill, Hopkins and Miller only tell half a story. The money has become available for community projects as the result of the one-off sale of the Leeds Bradford Airport.

The ward investment fund represents only a small proportion of the £51 million receipt. We have seen an unholy rush by the Tories to allocate the bulk of the receipt, with no detail or genuine public debate on their spending proposals. The ward investment fund is all well and good but how many people in Keighley can honestly say they have the slightest idea what the remaining £48 million pounds is being spent on?

It is also the case that the airport generated a significant income stream for investment across the district. As the airport cannot be sold again, what valuable, publicly owned, asset will Conservative-led Bradford Council sell next? It would seem to me, in selling off the airport, the Conservatives have sold the "goose", denying the people of this area the benefits of the "golden eggs" it could have laid.

Keith E Dredge, Worth Valley Labour Party, Ouse Street, Haworth