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Monitor more closely

As a ‘member’ of Swindon Silicon (sic) Systems I worked in Clifton Street School for more than 20 years and am naturally very sorry to read about the building’s current derelict state (SA, September 18).

Of course the developer should reinstate the roof and interior but is that going to happen?

More likely he will walk away, leaving Swindon with the problem we have with the Mechanics’ Institute and the Locarno.

It hurts me to suggest it but perhaps a pragmatic approach is best; allow the developer to continue with his demolition but fine him as harshly as possible for abuse of planning laws. The lesson for the council is surely that redevelopments must be more closely monitored so that rogue developers are not able to behave in this fashion in future.

Andy Brittain, Ex-SSSL MD, Fairlawn, Swindon

Promise not kept

Politicians of all parties never cease to amaze, particularly with their inability to tell the truth or honour a promise.

And so it is with the leader of the Labour Party who writes in a national newspaper that he wants to offer the people of the UK a choice between remaining in the EU and – yes, you guessed it – leaving the EU.

To ensure no misunderstanding he wants to call this event a referendum and to make sure the electorate understand the terms of the referendum, Jeremy Corbyn ‘pledges’ that he “will carry out whatever the people decide”.

Now where have we heard that ‘promise’ before? And that’s the problem; Labour and Conservatives promised to respect the people’s vote as expressed in the 2016 referendum – indeed the two main parties confirmed that promise in their respective election manifestos in 2017. But they didn’t intend to keep the promise, and have done nothing but attempt to thwart it using parliamentary procedures and the courts.

A politician’s promise is worthless, a pledge meaningless, and a vow of no consequence. Sadly, the political class is characterised by a joke currently doing the rounds – “how can you tell when a politician’s lying? Their lips move!” So sad, but oh so true.

Des Morgan, Caraway Drive, Swindon

Dysfunctional system

My wife and I have been involved in environmental and social justice issues for more than 30 years, including a campaign named Cap and Share which offered a realistic solution to global warming and the depletion of resources including those upon which renewable energy depends.

I came to the conclusion 40 years ago that the more affluent in world society had to live more simply. I find no reason to change that view. The problem is that we have a dysfunctional economic system that demands that we consume more.

I don’t think that realistic solutions to the global economic and social crisis humanity faces can be found without a widespread understanding of the links between economic growth and global warming.

Also in order to avoid widespread depression amongst young people on account of the global warming message, we must provide them with practical ideas for coping with the decline in the economy (increasingly known as ‘degrowth’) that will be the consequence of diminishing resources of oil, gas and other carbon fuels and rare metals upon which renewables depend and/or responding to the global warming emergency.

Michael Thomas, Churchward Avenue, Swindon

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