Sad demise

THROUGH your Postbag page I would like to pay tribute to everyone who supported Sarum Radio, the community radio station whose sad demise we witnessed at the end of August. I want to give my personal thanks to all the women in Salisbury and the surrounding area who allowed me to interview them for my monthly show – ‘Women of Wiltshire’. It was an experience I shall always treasure and I am grateful to all those fascinating local women who gave their time so generously to take part.

Particular thanks are due to the Sarum Radio Trustees, especially Gary Richards who threw his heart and soul into the enterprise, also to Antony Bird and Trevor Kay who both worked hard to build and maintain the community enterprise company. Thanks to local companies who sponsored and helped to fund the station and to all the technical team and the presenters who worked hard to keep the station on air with lively, interesting programmes and an eclectic mix of musical styles.

As presenters, we are grateful to audiences in the Salisbury area who did support and listen to Sarum Radio over the eight months we were on air. It is a real shame that our plans to grow and expand from an internet broadcasting platform to apply for a full community DAB licence were not realised.

May I close with a line stolen from Joni Mitchell’s ‘Big Yellow Taxi’ – “don’t it always seem to go, that you don’t know what you’ve got ‘till it’s gone?”

Liz Batten, Woodfalls


COLIN Newbury’s letter in last week’ Journal highlights the appalling deterioration in the service provided by our local bus company. I regularly use Red 1 which serves the local hospital and is supposed to run a ten minute timetable. This had been an excellent service in the past but over the last three months the buses have not run to timetable with those who work at the hospital inconvenienced and outpatients having to travel early for fear that they may miss their appointments. Buses are frequently seen running in convoys of two or three with long delays between. This service is now totally unreliable.

Today I waited forty five minutes for a bus on this route. We know the traffic in Salisbury can be bad but this is not new. The New Bridge Road works are a nuisance but the traffic does flow. In any case the deterioration precedes these roadworks.

The citizens of Salisbury are served by a bus company who are not based here and who appear not to care about their passengers. If they cannot cope they should move over for a company that can or at the very least amend the timetable to allow for traffic congestion so that passengers can rely on the service. It is utterly pointless to persist with a ten minute timetable they cannot run.

Dorothy Bunsee, Salisbury

Bus probe?

I WONDER if the local bus services are being quietly run down - maybe there is a news story here.

My partner just waited an hour for her northbound X7 bus in Alderbury - it arrived 50 minutes late! With the lunchtime traffic too, she will now be over 30 minutes late for work.The 12:06 bus has been around 35 minutes late every day this week except once - and maybe on that occasion it was just the one scheduled for an hour before being an hour late!

There have been no updates about service changes or delays on their Facebook page, and apparently the times indicated on the bus shelters indicate the time till the next scheduled time, rather than helpfully showing live bus information.

I suspect the Salisbury Reds company are quietly reducing the number of buses without letting anyone know, either because they are short staffed or simply as a cost-cutting exercise. Maybe some investigative journalism can shed some light on an issue of importance to Salisbury’s outlying communities.

Ian Southwood, Whaddon

A303 bypass

AS a local who (unfortunately) travels on the A303 often I agree that some drivers slow down to take photos, but it is the large lorries and tourist buses which lose momentum and cause the huge queues. It is true in the winter the traffic flows better, but that is because fewer people elect to go to the West Country for a holiday then!

I have always understood that Sir Cecil Chubb bought the stones as a present for his wife. She was apparently, “not amused” so he donated them in 1918 to THE NATION by deed of gift, for THE NATION to enjoy for free. How is it his wishes have been overturned? A fence is not the answer - the archaeologists have held up plans for far too long - and long suffering Winterbourne Stoke deserve the much talked about bypass. So many appointments, missed ferries etc. must create a huge hole in the economy, not to mention the miserable journeys for holiday makers and locals alike.

Rosemary Gairdner, Berwick St James

Iconic tower

THE soon-to-be demolished Gas tower is a very iconic structure which was built in 1928 and is part of Britain’s heritage. It’s a pity it isn’t part of the Heritage Weekend as I am sure many people would of liked a look inside, including myself.

Who’s decision was it to have it demolished? (I only heard about the demolition when I read the Journal.) So, there are going to be more houses built, that won’t get sold, as it is not an attractive site. I was appalled at the amount of rubbish, mostly plastic that was on the site. I see it is being used by the Royal Mail vans, so why are they all there? I thought the office was in Fisherton Street?

I don’t know how you are going to demolish such a hefty iron structure!!!

From an outraged Salisbury resident.

Anna Milne, Salisbury

Dog success

DESPITE the constant rain, the RSPCA dog day at Ashley Heath on Sunday, September 3 was a wonderful event.

No ‘preening’ required here for such classes as ‘Most Waggy Tail’ or ‘ Most Well Behaved Puppy’ etc. This show was all about the owners; and rightly so, as the majority of them have given loving homes to rescue dogs.

I had to smile as soggy dogs looked on bemused as their owner beamed with love and pride when handed a much sought after rosette that their oblivious pooch had won!

Whilst not an owner myself, I went along to visit the stalls and contribute to this wonderful cause, and in return had the most delightful, albeit soaked through day!

Wendy Doody, Ringwood

Bad decision

I WOULD just like to state how appalled I am that the council have given planning permission to the ‘travellers’ for caravans at the site near the bridge at Winterbourne Earls. This is made additionally awful by the fact that the council are evicting the lady who was the previous. owner. When will the authorities start to use some common sense and stop pandering to the politically correct minorities who seem to have a mystical sway over the minds of those in positions of responsibility.

Yours in exasperation,

David Rees, Salisbury

Big business

WHY does Wiltshire Council need corporate directors? A council is a public body originally set up to clear the streets of filth to prevent pests and diseases. That should remain their priority.

To appoint corporate directors is more akin to big business. The large salaries are only part of the cost, there are as always the over-generous expense accounts.

If our roads were repaired, our bins emptied frequently, pavements and verges cleaned and empty shops occupied, then our beautiful county and city would sell itself.

Jane Martin, Alderbury

VJ thanks

ON behalf of members of the ex Burma Star Association I would like to thank Mr R Giddings, Salisbury RBL president, for the excellent VJ Parade held at the War Memorial, which he organized for the 72nd Anniversary of the Victory over Japan.

Also a thank you to members of the Salisbury RBL band, the clergy who took the service and to the Mayor and Councillors who also attended it really was a very heart-warming occasion remembering the men who fought and those who died in the Burma Campaign, the men were known as the “Forgotten Army” and so it is right to celebrate the Anniversary so that we do not forget.

I would also like to thank Tom Gregory for all of the pictures that he took especially as he included all of those taking part, also another special thank you to Mr R Giddings for all his work and organization, it was very much appreciated by us all.

Jean King, Ringwood

Badger cull

I REFER to M. Clark’s letter which makes several mistaken utterances.

Firstly, camera recorded and practical trials do prove that the badger spreads TB to cattle by dribbling saliva and urine in fields where cattle graze and in ground level troughs.

Secondly, cattle movements are tightly controlled and have been for some years. This by itself has done little if anything to control the spread of TB.

The culls are wasting tax payers money because of political interference also making it an emotive issue.

Up to then farmers dealt with infected setts at their own expense.

Badgers are only protected because of badger baiting.

Their numbers are now out of control meaning that the health of the population is in decline. Only man and his car are the Badgers’ known predator.

Badgers are not sweet furry creatures. They are killers of kittens, chickens, hedgehogs. They are eating the eggs of ground nesting birds, especially the skylark.

So please, let’s be sensible about this major problem causing massive waste of bovine life, food production and the health of the national herd. Do not let ignorant, arrogant politicians interfere in matters about which they know nothing.

Jane Martin, Alderbury