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All talk, but no action

Just a question. Where was Mr Collins when the eastern expansion plans were first put to public consultations?

I have attended many of these and residents from Merlin Way attended these meetings. I remember one really well when a member of the public asked what steps were being taken by the council to ensure Covingham was not flooded again.

The reason for this question was that he had looked into it and the conclusion was that with the amount of housing proposed there would be an issue with flooding in this area. The people representing the council did not give an acceptable reply to this.

As to the traffic, maybe Mr Collins would like to live in Merlin Way with the constant road traffic noise and the tailbacks that are very common from the M4 right up to the White Hart roundabout.

The constant drone of traffic day and night means residents are unable to open their windows in the summer.Would he like to live here with the drone?

If one looks on the Internet the A419 is very noisy, decibels exceed acceptable noise levels and the council does nothing. We have asked for a barrier but that was rejected.

I am assuming because of this expansion the speed of the traffic exceeds that of the M4.There should be a speed limit on the A419 same as in Germany when a busy road is near a residential area.

Merlin Way is already a very busy road in the morning and parents with children find it very difficult to cross. what Mr Collins is proposing is, ‘save me and the residents of Stratton at the expense of Covingham.’ This is not acceptable.

We now live in a very overcrowded country with millions of vehicles and this will increase every year. What the Government needs to do is to build another Milton Keynes with new infrastructure. Not keep on adding large expansions to already over used facilities that the Swindon council cannot afford to run.

Swindon cannot ever be a city and look at our town centre. I am ashamed to say that our council has done nothing to improve it. They are all talk but no action.

MERLIN ROAD RESIDENT, Address supplied

Museum is all wrong

I THOUGHT that Swindon Council wanted to have a new museum that would be large enough to house and exhibit many more items than the existing museum.

But now they are still pursuing this new plan with a massive roof that is not able to house anything.

It’s just a queer looking structure no useable for anything and waste of a terrific amount of money that could have been used for extra rooms.

I, and many others, feel that a museum should be a solid, older looking building in line with the old things that will be exhibited inside.

The council have missed their chance of this when the mechanics and Locarno were in good condition. Even our lovely McIlroys would have been a suitable place.

Why waste millions of pounds when they say Swindon is short of money? There are many more things needing money in this town, now they are talking about axing 420 of their own workers to save money.

They ought to think more seriously about the vast cost of this proposed building. They are mistaken if they think it will attract visitors to Swindon people will just see it once and not keep coming back here.


Don’t waste this cash

NOW the council is axing up to 420 job I hope this will put an end to the council wasting £22m on a museum that the majority don’t want and that we can’t afford.

And then to read that the council have dished out £508,000 on compensation because of all the potholes. That is where the money should go and give us a better selection of shops in the town centre, not wasting it on a museum nobody will use.

MRS TOWNSEND, Redcliffe Street, Rodbourne

Mental health unit vital

HOW much more time and money is to be wasted by the Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership ‘discussing’ the proposed closure of the Place Of Safety unit in Swindon (and other units in Wiltshire) (SA Oct 26)?

Surely it is blatantly obvious that a town the size of Swindon needs such an emergency unit on its doorstep – rather than 25 miles away?

Would anyone even consider Swindon closing its A&E unit at GWH – the equivalent for ‘physical health’?

MALCOLM MORRISON, Retired Orthopaedic Surgeon, Prospect Hill, Swindon

In excellent hands

WITH a recent diagnosis of cancer, I was referred to the Great Western Hospital where I underwent two major operations.

The reason for this letter is to say I am so very grateful to the GWH in every way from the cleaners, volunteers, nurses, doctors and consultants.

I could not have received better care in every way. Our National Health Service so often receives bad press so I wondered if by writing to you I may have an opportunity to say thank you and maybe reassure anyone awaiting surgery that in my opinion, they will be in excellent hands.

BRIGID FOLEY, St Nicholas Yard, Fyfield, Marlborough

Older drivers’ guide

A SURVEY by Independent Age, the older people’s charity, revealed that more than two in five (42 per cent) of drivers aged 70 and over in the south west say they would feel like they’d lost part of their identity if they were not able to drive and for more than nine in 10 (91 per cent) of older drivers it would mean a loss of independence.

The survey was commissioned to promote our new, free advice guide, Behind the Wheel: Tips For Safe And Confident Driving In Later Life.

The guide is full of tips to help support older drivers and provides information on alternatives if they decide to stop driving.

It is accompanied by online information for the families of older drivers around how to start difficult conversations about driving.

The survey showed that, for many older people in the south west, being able to drive means so much more than just being able to get out and about.

Whether it’s keeping in touch with family and friends or continuing to do their shopping, driving can help maintain a sense of independence, and identity too.

There are almost five million people over the age of 70 who hold licences in the UK, with more than 100,000 of those over the age of 90.

There are many benefits to continuing to drive into older age and, as long as they remain safe, older people should be able to continue driving for as long as they want to.

It’s also vital that people who are no longer able to drive have access to information on the various options available for getting around without a car.

Independent Age is one of the two charities who provided contributors for ITV’s 100-year-old Driving School, which aired in September.

Independent Age representatives attended the three regional hubs to talk to older drivers about their experiences of driving, in research for the Behind The Wheel advice guide.

Behind The Wheel is free to order and download from or can be ordered by calling 0800 319 6789.

To make a donation or find out more about how you can support the work of Independent Age visit

LUCY HARMER, Director of services, Independent Age

Recognise workers

THE National Autistic Society’s Autism Professional Awards are back this year. We are looking for people and organisations in your area that make a difference to the lives of autistic people and their families.

We want your stories so that we can increase public understanding of autism and inspire others to support autistic individuals.

Do you know a teaching assistant that has helped an autistic child to achieve something amazing? Or perhaps you know of a business that has made adjustments for autistic employees? Or even an inspirational social worker?

We want to recognise all the great work in your community so get nominating at


Car park is health risk

ON MAKING a visit to the town centre on Thursday, October 26 I parked in the car park connected to Debenhams and was delighted to find a variety of drug paraphernalia, including needles, littered around my feet when I stepped out of my car.

This is a joke. Last time I came into town the same thing happened and I was wearing open shoes, it’s half term and there are families coming into the centre and you shouldn’t have to tip toe around used needles to get to your car.

With rumours of SBC raising car park prices to fund a clean- up team, I don’t understand how we should be paying more for the privilege of a drug-free parking space when that’s a service they should already be providing.

SBC doesn’t stand for Swindon Borough Council anymore, it stands for Stupid Bureaucratic Clowns.

CHARLOTTE CROSS, Oakhurst, Swindon