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.

It is about choice

Steve Jack has again written to insist his religious definition of life must trump any right of women to choose whether to continue with a pregnancy. He has given some highlights of embryological milestones which have no bearing on whether a foetus is a sentient human with more rights than the woman in whose womb it resides. Incidentally his claim on the chronology of the appearance of foetal brain waves is simply wrong.

Mr Jack’s comments on what a foetus may or may not be doing at 22 weeks aren’t relevant to his own position either. The Irish referendum he has taken exception to, may lead to abortion being allowed at 12 weeks, before the neural architecture for consciousness has developed. More importantly, Mr Jack’s view has life beginning at conception, long before any of the embryological features he refers to. He opposes any right to abortion.

Finally, Mr Jack asks why I use on the term “pro choice” rather than “pro abortion”. No woman wants an abortion. Women have always sought to control their fertility and this has always included abortion. Sometimes cruel laws have punished women for exercising this right and laws have meant that abortions have happened in dangerous circumstances. There is no justification for such laws and in any case all the evidence shows the freer the availability of abortion, the earlier they become. Even in the UK where availability remains quite restrictive the great majority of abortions happen before ten weeks.

Peter Smith, Woodside Avenue, Swindon

Park is a disgrace

How I agree with the letter from Margaret Gardiner (re Coate Water). We visited there a while ago and was shocked at how dirty and filthy everything was.

The diving board is a complete disgrace. When you think that years ago water polo matches took place on a regular basis in that water and it was clean then and also a lovely swimming pool which was well used and clean. There is nothing now to attract visitors.

Jean Beale, Highclere Avenue, Lawn

Ban unnecessary

I see that there is now talk about water shortages and hosepipe bans in certain areas and, as far as I understand, there is enough water, but the water treatment centres find it difficult to cope with usage!

If there were real problems with water shortages, why aren’t the water companies up in arms when massive amounts of new houses are contemplated?

The massive amount of houses around Swindon must have a huge effect on the water distribution facility to all of those extra properties.

On that basis, plus the fact that I pay water rates, I see no need to limit my usage, even with a hosepipe, unless the water company offers me a reduction of rates for ‘A reduction in usage’ due to the situation at the time.

Chris Gleed, Proud Close, Purton

Letters to the Editor: What do you think?

Do you have an opinion on our reader letters? Get in touch.

Add your contribution now By uploading a contribution, for use online and in print, you accept our contributor terms. You will either own or have permission to use anything you provide.