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Your letters on Downham Academy school places, Gary Lineker debate, flooding and education

They fear his opinions may resonate with football fans

Many people who vilify Match of the Day presenter Gary Lineker tweeting certain political opinions simply because he’s a massively well paid BBC broadcaster who should keep within so called impartiality guidelines and keep his opinions to himself are being just as wokish as those who are normally associated with being ‘lefty’ wokists.

Many of these ‘right wing wokish’ Lineker critics underline how politically apathetic they really are and if anything are ironically exploiting him as a smokescreen celebrity to disguise it.

The essential issue isn’t over on whose behalf Mr Lineker speaks. The question is why his tweet which mildly compares 1930s German politics with the UK’s today has caused so many ructions within the Tory class and their media?

Having been in power for so long, presiding over a provenly failed economic ideology, the Tory Government’s real problem with the likes of Mr Lineker is he’s not directly a BBC political pundit but a popular intelligent football sports presenter whose broadcasting career has evolved naturally out of being a successful professional footballer.

Consequently what the Tory Government really don’t like is Mr Lineker’s opinions on Twitter might well resonate with much of the football sporting fraternity because the Tories know professional football dominates the livelihoods and passions of thousands of voting football fans and his opinions might well ‘steal’ votes from the Tories.

Nick Vinehill


The very real dangers of flooding

According to the Environment Agency, a third of people do not know that they are living in homes at high risk of flooding by the seas.

Others do not know that their lives would still be seriously disrupted because their utilities (electricity and water pumping stations) are in high risk area.

Representatives from the Internal Drainage Board and the Environment Agency speaking at recent Community and Environment panel meeting dispelled any sense of complacency listeners may have had about flood risk.

An internal drainage board speaker warned that the pumps used across the borough need replacing and would not cope if there were exceptional rain storms.

Some £12billion investments in drainage over 30 years is needed to bring our systems up to standard according to a report by the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC).

The Environment Agency speaker warned that there is a limit to how high sea defences can be built. She talked about ‘not holding the line’ and ‘managed retreat’.

This conjures distressing pictures of allowing the sea to take over land and homes. There was discussion about flood risk being a conversation that needs to happen.

At the moment there doesn’t seem to a conversation or sense of urgency. The scale of the threat from sea and surface water flooding needs more resources human and financial plus radical change, for instance, the NIC report calls for stricter controls on building in flood-prone areas.

The meeting is still available to watch on West Norfolk Borough Council’s YouTube channel.

Jenny Walker


PC education will confuse children

The Daily Mail recently reported that a trust which runs nine Church of England Primaries has told teachers to ‘re-educate’ pupils who make non-PC comments in schools, such as ‘that is mental’, and obviously replacing it with snowflake terminology.

This is tantamount to programming children into classroom dunces, and it is these trustees who are mental, determined to confuse their charges.

There is a Biblical response to the Aquinas C of E Education Trust in Romans 1 v 22: “Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools”.

David Fleming


People always need schools

Why is anyone surprised that secondary school pupils from Upwell and Outwell are discovering that they’re going to be bussed 20 miles to Methwold instead of the usual transition to Downham Academy?

With the current stupidity surrounding the unsustainable and illogical decisions regarding the building of endless housing estates in Downham, something must get sacrificed in the name of development...this time it’s school kids ending up being carted halfway across the county because the ‘planners’ show zero regard for the damage they know they’re doing to communities and the lives of residents.

Illogically, despite the ludicrously ambitious house building programme they also decided to close the functioning old Downham Grammar School which was housing the Sixth Form students and, for a while, the newbie Year 7 children were also billeted there too, which further reduced the main High School capacity.

So, if any angry, upset, and frustrated parents want to know why their children are being messed about like this, it’s simple.

The planners forget that people who live in these new houses would need dentists, schools, doctors, and a functioning
infrastructure and that’s why the Downham Academy is oversubscribed.

It’s unbelievable. Who could have possibly predicted that happening?

The bigwigs clearly are keeping their heads in the sand and forging ahead irrespective of the carnage they’re knowingly creating here.

Steve Mackinder


Looking for inspiring kids and carers

I am writing to you as ambassador for WellChild, the national charity for seriously ill children, to ask you to nominate a special child, young person or caring professional for this year’s WellChild Awards.

It is perhaps particularly important to get involved this year as times have never been tougher for seriously ill children and their families.

Currently families with complex needs children have come out of a desperate situation during the Covid pandemic and into the crippling cost-of-living crisis .

More than ever this year they need to be recognised and one simple way you can help is by nominating someone for a WellChild Award.

The deadline for nominations is March 20 so please don’t delay if you know a special young person, or child health professional in your area and nominate them for the 2023 WellChild Awards.

At the Awards, we will be paying a public tribute to some of the UK’s inspirational children, young people and caring professionals.

We are looking for inspirational children and young people who have defied the odds in the face of serious illness and the selfless nurses, doctors, brothers, sisters and friends who help care for them. This is your opportunity to give them the recognition they deserve at a prestigious event.

I have presented the WellChild Awards many times alongside a host of celebrity guests. The awards are a truly magical experience for the winners who have an evening they will never forget.

I have seen for myself the wonderful boost that the Awards bring to the winners and nominees, many of whom are living with serious illnesses. Right now, that’s something they really need.

Nominations are open now so I would like to appeal to readers to get yours in before the closing date. Get the details of how to nominate at www.wellchild.org.uk/awards

The winners will be invited along with their nominator to attend the WellChild Awards ceremony in 2023.

Now more than ever it is important to be involved in nominating a deserving winner.

If you know someone who deserves to be recognised, show them how special they are.

Gaby Roslin

WellChild Ambassador

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