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So who is responsible?

Deciding not to seriously address calls to re-open children’s centres (Adver Tuesday 5th June) the Tory leader of Swindon Borough Council David Renard instead opts for playing a call and response game with his own supporters.

Drawing on themes calculated to excite them he says the Labour group are far left (showing that he is not short of a sense of humour), that they want to throw tax payer money at problems, and that (standing here on Victorian Tory principles) the state has little responsibility in maintaining the health of children anyway, implying that the very suggestion of children’s centres uncovers Labour’s intention of replacing the nuclear family. Any state responsibility here for Mr Renard is more than adequately dealt with through a “fruit and veg scheme”.

A properly funded network of children’s centres, providing a variety of stigma free advisory services for families, on childcare and wider issues, where self-help groups can also be based with access to professional support would be a valuable resource in our society. Sadly, the one Conservative principle which trumps all others, greed and profit for the rich minority, means that no such social service can be contemplated.

Peter Smith, Woodside Avenue, Swindon

Not the hospice I know

I was shocked and saddened to read the Care Quality Commission’s report on Prospect Hospice last week. I have to declare an interest with Prospect as I’ve worked as a volunteer driver for the past three years or more.

My experience with all members of staff has been nothing but exemplary. From the moment you walk through the main door, you are greeted with a smile and their attention to the patients is above and beyond what you would expect in any hospital.

All of the people I’ve ever taken in for day care treatment have nothing but good words to say about the place. The reports on local TV and press bear no resemblance to the Prospect Hospice that I know and love.

Tom Horwat, Upavon Court, Penhill, Swindon

Money worries

At the age of seventy five I have no immediate financial problems. However over the past few weeks I have had a sharp lesson in reality regarding ordinary hard working people in retirement and people with young families.

My wife and I have financial sums in ISAs, now reduced from 1.5 to 0.70, far below the rate of inflation. I have received a letter from my gas and electricity supplier adding an increase far above the rate of inflation. A rise in water rates well above the rate of inflation. Not to mention an extortionate rise in council tax from a council which in my personal opinion is not fit for purpose.

How do pensioners with a limited income, and people with young families, rent and mortgages to maintain, manage to financially survive?

Bill Williams, Merlin Way, Covingham, Swindon

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