Here's a plan – make buses free
So, the controversial £5 million scheme to create bus lanes along Aylestone and Lutterworth roads has been given the go-ahead by Peter Soulsby in spite of massive opposition ("£5m bus lanes get go-ahead", Mercury, January 9).
Of the £5 million, all but £300,000 is to come from local or national taxes, and you can bet the bus firm will hope to recoup its £300,000 in increased fares.
I thought we were in a period of austerity, but it would seem the Government and local authorities can spend money that is not really their own with impunity.
Reducing expenditure on non- essential schemes is a term they don't seem to understand.
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Here is an alternative idea that would not cost one penny in altering the road, moving drains, narrowing pavements, relaying electricity cables, moving street lights, moving bus stops or resurfacing.
Nor would it cause months of disruption.
Why not, Sir Peter, city and county councillors and Arriva managers, contribute the £2.5 million you obviously have spare to make bus journeys along the road between Glen Parva and Leicester free to everyone during the daytime for, say, six months, and see what happens?
My guess is the number of passengers would increase massively and the number of cars would decrease dramatically, as would air pollution.
Emergency vehicles would be able to get to their destinations quicker and there would be fewer accidents and consequent injuries.
More buses would be needed as demand grew and they would then need to be more frequent.
In addition, with decreased car traffic, journey times would be reduced.
Come on, you decision-makers, think a little bit more creatively and you might get a better result and, incidentally, the support of almost everyone.
Geoffrey Pool, Leicester.
I agree with Art Zarb's comments ("Pensioners have right to benefits", Mailbox, January 9) that MPs should all take a reduction in their salaries and allowances.
I also think that MPs and members of the House of Lords who are 65 and over should not receive the Winter Fuel Allowance. After all, with the fantastic salaries they are on, do they really need it?
It is also time we saw local, city and county councillors take a reduction in their expenses.
One thing that amazed me when the county council decided to turn off street lights was to see workmen taking lights down and erecting new ones with a timer.
I wonder how much this cost as no doubt it happened all throughout Leicestershire.
Surely they could just have fitted a timer to the street lights that were already in place?
Kevin Fletcher, Coalville.
I was pleased to see that Dipak Fakey has been awarded an OBE for services to education.
Working as a teacher, Mr Fakey knew that good values are timeless and universal.
He set up the Good Value Clubs, where good behaviour is learnt through fun and games.
He invented board games and his clubs became very popular. Hundreds of children have joined the clubs over the years.
In an age where a definite moral code is not very popular and at a time when the difference between right and wrong is sometimes blurred, Good Value Clubs should be extended to many more schools.
Mrs Liv G Stratton, Leicester.
If the drivers whose excuse that they did not see large signs when they were ticketed for using bus lanes are being genuine, perhaps a trip to the optician is in order.
In the meantime, the council should be pressing ahead with installing bus lane cameras on all prohibited roads, not reviewing a perfectly sensible policy.
Rob Thomas, Botcheston.