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Councillor a one-off

I’d like to associate myself with the comments of James Yeowell and David Renard, reflecting on the life of my good friend Des Moffatt (SA, December 5)

We first got to know each other back in the Plessey Cheney Manor days, in 1973, he a Transport and General Workers shop steward and me, a Personnel Manager.

He needed some skill. He not only had normal issues to contend with but also the dominant Plessey trade union, the AEW, was perpetually on his case.

Whilst we were on different sides of the company fence, it never felt like that with Des. He was always well-prepared and determined but with an underlying warmth, honesty and common sense. He was fully aware that a good deal should benefit both parties.

For me, he was a sensible labour Politician, in the mould of Arthur Miles, Reg Clarke, Jim Masters, Harry Garrett, Percy Jefferies … although intellectually way ahead.

During 36 years on Swindon Borough Council, he was not always a great one for the limelight, but you always knew he was beavering away in the background, dedicated to making things better for his constituents and, he felt, wider society.

As Chair of Haydon Wick Council at the time, and one of the few advocates of extended Parishing, Des and I met frequently to understand what the strategy and opportunities could be for North Central Swindon.

A popular, well-respected, diligent and serious Councillor, I know it’s a well-worn expression when somebody passes away, but Des was truly a one-off and will be missed at so many levels, not least by his family.

I was in touch with him some weeks ago and had no idea he was ill. Equally I’m not sure whether he knew.

If he did he will have faced this challenge, as he did everything in life, with stoicism mixed with good humour. I took a small gift around days before he died and I do hope he was just well enough to enjoy it.

Des, we were friends for 47 years and it’s hard to believe I’m never going to hear that soft, warm Northern Irish brogue once more. RIP.

John Stooke, Haydon End

Loss of a good guy

We were so sorry to read about the death of Des Moffatt. He was one of the good guys.

Always there to help in anyway he could.

A lovely man. Our sincere good wishes go to his family. He will be sorely missed.

Mrs Townsend, Redcliffe Street, Rodbourne

Cats say thanks

Would you give me the opportunity to Thank West Swindon Centre for allowing Swindon Cats Protection

to hold a collection and food drop last Saturday. People were very generous and donated

£170.37 plus 11 boxes/bags of dried cat food, 141 tins and 278 pouches.

These events are particularly important, now we do not have a charity shop, in

helping us with cat welfare in the local area.

Philip Beaven, Merton Avenue, Swindon

Parking ban works

I READ the recent SA article about tickets being issued to car owners parked dangerously near to school entrances in parts of Swindon.

Without doubt, some motorists are putting adults/children at risk of danger by their ignorance and selfishness attitude to safety.

Enforcement and fines is the only way to stop inconsiderate parents/guardians from parking where they want.

Hit them in the pocket and hopefully they’ll soon learn and change their habits.

Near me is an infant school and it was a real problem until double yellow lines were put down.

It helped immensely but still some motorists felt the lines didn’t apply to them. I contacted my local council. Give credit where credit is due, they arranged patrols and parking tickets were issued.

I’m pleased to say that its had a real positive effect. The school entrance is now clear of dangerously parked cars which benefits everyone.

Both the parents/guardians and children are getting more exercise by having to walk further to get to the school.

This will, along with other personal measures, help reduce adult and child obesity.

So it’s a complete win win situation all round.

Alan Wilson, Shapwick Close, Nythe, Swindon

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