PLEASE keep your letters to 250 words maximum giving your name, address and daytime telephone number - even on emails. Email: Write: Swindon Advertiser, 100 Victoria Road, Swindon, SN1 3BE. Phone: 01793 501806.

Anonymity is granted only at the discretion of the editor, who also reserves the right to edit letters.

A simple solution

GWH’s chief executive Nerissa Vaughan castigates service provider Arriva for its tardiness as her officers propose a £30k solution to moving patients between the main hospital and the adjoining SWIC unit (SA 6 Nov).

Leaving aside the absurdity of not being able to find a simple solution to the situation (and yes there is a simple solution which should not cost £30k) the real issue is the incompetence of the chief executive and her management team, including the holder of the grandiose title director of strategy.

Arriva has a contract which, according to Ms Vaughan, it is not working to, indeed in a quote attributed to her she states the situation has been a problem “for years”.

However, rather than forcing Arriva to perform its contractual obligations she appears to have allowed the situation to drag on “for years” and now wants to bypass the provider and at additional cost to the trust spend £30k on a vehicle and operators to do the job Arriva is contracted to do.

I suggest that what we see here is the real problem facing the NHS, bureaucrats in suits incapable of negotiating a simple contract and, worse, not having the skill set to ensure the contract is adhered to.

On this occasion the fault lies with GWH management for allowing Arriva to get away with poor performance “for years”.

If Ms Vaughan is serious when she states the existing contract is “not delivering on its core” which is the typical managerial way of saying ‘it’s not working’ – and worse it’s been like that “for years”, the solution is, as she suggests, “a simple one to solve” Ms Vaughan should go and be replaced by someone who can do the job.

It takes less than three minutes to walk between the two units, it should take Ms Vaughan much less time to recognise her own shortcomings in this farce.

DES MORGAN, Caraway Drive, Swindon

Rules from the Bard

SEVENTY years ago at a school in a mining area of South Yorkshire I was introduced to the works of William Shakespeare and many of his most memorable lines have ruled my sub conscious ever since.

This, from Julius Caesar, Act 1, Scene 2, in particular, I find to be a good rule for all; from Monarchs to minions CASSIUS: “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars

But in ourselves, that we are underlings.

Caesar straddles the narrow world like a giant,

and we petty men walk under his huge legs and look forward only to dying dishonourably, as slaves.

Men can be masters of their fate. It is not destiny’s fault, but our own faults, that we are slaves”

Maybe it went a bit wrong in Russia in 1917 but how does it apply to Swindon in 2017? Well here are my three wishes for Christmas:

1) Stop the Queensfield rat runners and if YOU are one of them, please go away and sort out the borough council’s traffic planners.

2) Get out of the Division 2 STFC. No one else can help you do it.

3) Brexit or not, all those living or doing business in the UK should be paying their taxes and the Queen should set an example by making an appropriate donation to a charity for the elderly or disabled.

If you need a reserve wish as a New Year’s Resolution I think that what is mainly wrong with society today is typified by the attitude of managers at the top of the Football League.

Having lost badly we have a supposedly top notch manager claiming it was because the opposition scored one goal off-side and got another from a penalty given as a result of the attacking player “taking a dive”.

When anything goes wrong in the UK today, it is always someone else’s fault!

So, to return to the top and Cassius: I resolve from 01/01/2018 to take responsibility for my own actions, consider their effect on others and try to change the world rather than waiting for others to change it for me and dying a slave.

BRUTUS, Upper Stratton, Swindon

War not questioned

I APPLAUD your correspondent Graham Philpot for wearing his poppy in support of all victims of war, civilian and military, and their families.

He also states commendably that he rejects the glorification of war.

That leaves me puzzled why he buys his poppy from the British Legion which, on its website, mentions only “the sacrifices made by the Armed Forces community, past and present”, and says that the poppy is “supporting a new generation of veterans and Service personnel that need our support”.

The same British Legion that asks for our support once a year by buying a red poppy and having a minute’s silence in the midst of military pomp and ceremony.

Des Morgan interpreted my previous letter as a call for the British Legion to act as a “conciliation service”. That would indeed be worthwhile, but rather misses the point.

The best way to honour the sacrifices of the past in defence of democracy is to work to make such sacrifice unnecessary in future.

That takes years of patient active peace building. It involves understanding the causes of conflict. The British Legion seems quite happy to endlessly keep adding to the list of those to be remembered, without ever questioning why the slaughter continues.

Can any of your correspondents explain how that honours the fallen?

HOWARD MARCH, Tudor Crescent, Stratton, Swindon

License these guns

IN ADDITION to the terrible human deaths and casualties that have been inflicted by indiscriminate use of air weapons, many pets have also been the unfortunate victims of air weapons.

Cats Protection’s air gun licensing petition has already received over 76,000 signatures and we would like to thank all of those who have signed the petition.

Cats receive life-changing injuries from air guns such as limb amputation or loss of an eye. A 2016 Cats Protection survey of vets found that 46 per cent of reported incidents result in fatalities.

We welcome the Government’s intention to review the regulation of air weapons licensing.

We are asking the Government to licence air guns in England and Wales, bringing us in line with Northern Ireland and Scotland.

Our monitoring shows nearly four cats a week are reported as killed or injured by an air gun in the UK – the actual figure is higher as many remain unreported.

We would like to encourage those who haven’t signed up to show their support by going to our website:

JACQUI CUFF, Advocacy and Government Relations Manager, Cats Protection

Ethics are needed

Recently some citizens have been outraged that public institutions like the BBC, have always operated a completely unjust payment system for female staff.

The explanation is that immoral men have been specially selected as directors retaining that injustice, with no ambition to establish honourable standards.

And within private enterprise Conservative voters are totally opposed to the idea of compelling firms to adopt honourable standards of equal pay.

If these are the kind of people chosen as directors, just as bank directors were exposed as criminals deserving multi-million pound fines in 2008, you would scarcely expect them to treat female underlings with respect.

If male British directors have been deliberately cheating female employees financially for 100 years, and half the UK population does not object to that, it would be astonishing if those same men kept their hands to themselves.

You must see that these two attitudes of their superiority, about pay and sex, are connected in executive heads.

Morality is indivisible. Directors who cheat female employees of their salary, will cheat customers, employees and you.

These creeps are only perpetuating British upper class culture: The boss can do as he likes, because he is the boss. With these standards, are you surprised that British productivity is low?

Sexual harassment and sexual blackmail are an indication that British commerce has always needed an ethical foundation to be enforced, but only those without ethics were promoted.

We could promote different employees, men and women, ones with principles.

C N WESTERMAN, Meadow Rise, Brynna, Mid Glam

Reverse Brexit now

ONE in four people who voted Brexit are now saying that they felt conned into the decision (according to award winning polling company Opinion).

Vegetables are rotting in the fields because there are no longer European pickers to do the work and the value of the pound has fallen.

These things are happening now and we have still not left the EU so I wonder how many in North Wiltshire are now thinking perhaps we should drop anchor and remain in the EU?

Doing this sooner rather than later would mean keeping our existing terms. As Bank of England Governor Mark Carney was reported as saying in the Telegraph: “Britain would be booming if it wasn’t for Brexit.

The ‘mustn’t grumble’ approach of British life much parodied by Monty Python is not an option if we want our children and, indeed, our nation to prosper in future years.

The likely result of having to apply to re-join the EU after the UK has formally left, would in all likelihood be punitive and would mean among other things losing the pound and submitting to those things like the Schengen area which would be to bitter a pill for most to swallow.

Far better then, to blame those who need blaming, like Boris and May and Gove and the beer-swigging conman himself Farage, and stay in the EU on the terms that we had, and with our heads held high.

DR BRIAN MATHEW, North Wiltshire Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Spokesman