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Honda move face-saving

My good friend and fellow correspondent Mark Webb asks me to explain why I don’t believe Brexit was the single motivation for Honda closing their Swindon plant. (SA 15 March)

First, I believe what the Honda spokesman said, which was that the closure was NOT Brexit related (although they lied through their teeth when giving assurances they would not be closing the factory).

Secondly, Swindon produces a car which is at its life’s end.

It is being superseded by a new model which will almost certainly not have a polluting diesel engine such as the ones produced in Swindon.

Thirdly, car production at Swindon had fallen from 250k units to 150k units.

Such a difference, as we all know, results in the unit cost of production increasing.

Fourthly, Honda like every other manufacturer have been caught with their pants down in terms of changing their production priorities from dependency on the internal combustion engine to electric.

Their electric vehicle expertise resides in Japan and the principle market in the Far East and not the EU.

Finally, it is a matter of ‘face’ and Honda cannot be seen to be closing factories in Japan and making Japanese workers redundant while at the same time protecting foreign jobs.

As for why Honda laid off temporary workers, surely the answer is to be found in the description.

When times are good and production is at an all time high, the need for additional workers was met by employing temporary labour.

When the work disappears, sadly the first victims are those self same temps.

Des Morgan, Caraway Drive, Swindon

Referendum rejected

Patrick O’Shea seems to have forgotten that the people had a vote on the EU in 2016 and we voted leave.

In the 2017 General Election both major parties promised to honour the result of that public vote.

In 2019 this Remain dominated parliament has just voted to reject the referendum result.

Britain will not now be leaving the EU at the end of March as promised.

Steve Halden, Beaufort Green, Swindon

Hospital angels

On Tuesday March 12 I had one of the worst telephone calls anyone would want to receive.

My wife Lisa called me to say she was in extreme pain and was unwell.

I rushed home to find her and her mum sat on the sofa with Lisa in my eyes having a heart attack.

I called 999 and within 10 minutes an ambulance arrived and paramedics examined her.

Off to hospital into A&E ,examined, blood taken, xray/scan confirmed heart attack taken to the acute cardiac unit.

Next morning I arrived at the hospital Lisa had already gone down to theatre for her operation.

Four hours later she was back in ACU for recovery.

All the way through this nightmare of a journey Lisa, myself and Lisa’s Mum were given the utmost consideration, courtesy and help from the ambulance crew to the A&E staff, doctors, nurses, to the porters to Tony and Folly and all the teams of nurses on all shifts on the ACU ward, to David who keeps everyone’s spirits up in a very trying time in ACU, and of course to Mr Barnes and his team in the operating process.

Everyone in GWH treated us as human beings, every part of the process was talked about and explained, everything that was going to happen - how you will feel, what is going to happen is Lisa was discharged.

We all thank you GWH, you are all truly angels on our shoulders.

John L Crook, Haydon Wick, Swindon

Cup anniversary shame

Fifty years ago this week Swindon Town won the League Cup. A fantastic achievement against all odds.

I, like many other Town fans, was looking forward to the club celebrating the occasion at yesterday’s game with Port Vale.

I arrived earlier than normal to make sure I didn’t miss anything, only to find two sets of turnstiles open for the Don Rogers Stand.

Consequently, people were having to queue and for a lot of fans that meant standing on sodden ground.

A bad start to the day. But things were about to get worse.

As for the celebrations well, if you blinked, you missed them. It was that bad.

In my opinion, the owner and senior management of the club ought to be ashamed of themselves.

The club’s lack of effort to mark this historic occasion was disgraceful. I felt really sorry for the players.

Without doubt, they deserved to be treated far better than that.

As a fan, I was embarrassed by the whole situation.

More importantly, the club let the legends of 69 down, massively.

The club had plenty of time to get it right. Yet, they failed miserably.

There are no excuses. Shame on you Mr Power.

Alan Wilson, Shapwick Close, Nythe, Swindon

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