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Recorder letters: Elections; veterans visiting battlefields and green ambassadors

PUBLISHED: 12:00 15 April 2018

Sir Robin Wales not stand as Labour's mayoral candidate.

Sir Robin Wales not stand as Labour's mayoral candidate.

Newham Cll PR

Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Recorder readers this week.

Labour has a duty to community

Barry Wellington, Stratford, full address supplied, writes:

Earlier this week a Labour Party local election information card was delivered to my home.

To my dismay I noticed that our long standing and excellent Councillor Clive Furness would not be standing in May and upon making enquiries found that he had in fact been ‘deselected’ in Newham Labour Party’s recent ‘Night of the long knives’ which also saw the removal of our outstandingly successful and moderate Labour mayor.

The Newham Labour Party made no effort to canvas what local residents thought about their sitting councillors and whether they were satisfied or not by the status quo. This shows a contempt that the ‘new order’ has for local residents. We read that it was felt that Sir Robin Wales had created a ‘fiefdom’ in this borough but those who would wish to be in charge are creating their own, in which I feel the loyalty to their form of left wing politics will outweigh any sense of duty to the wider community.

When challenged in the past about the political makeup of Newham Council I felt that I could robustly defend the council and the changes and developments that it has introduced. I also note that one Labour candidate who was to stand in the Stratford ward has resigned because of the anti-Semitism that he has been experiencing. All this does not bode well for our borough and the future of its residents.

Help our veterans visit battlefields

Charles Byrne, director general, Royal British Legion, writes:

It’s The Royal British Legion’s belief that every World War II veteran should have the chance to revisit the battlefield on which they served

Thanks to new LIBOR funding from HM Treasury, we are now able to offer a fully funded trip to anyone who served in our Armed Forces during World War II.

However, as there is no unified record of World War II veterans that are alive today, I am reaching out to you and your readers in the hope that you can help us spread the word.

The trips will take place between spring and autumn this year and a family member and a carer will also be able to go along and share this pilgrimage of Remembrance with them.

Organised by Remembrance Travel, part of The Royal British Legion, the trip will give the World War IIveterans - now mostly in their 90s - a chance to meet up with fellow ex-service men and women, and pay their respects to their fallen comrades.

Veterans who may be interested in this opportunity need to apply through our tour operator, Arena Travel on 01473 660800, or visit: arenatravel.com/journeysofremembrance.

Honour our green ambassadors

Cel Spellman, actor and presenter on behalf of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), writes:

Younger generations must lead the way to protect our planet.

Robert Swan, a British explorer, famously once said that “The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it”. This quote has always stuck with me, because I believe this mindset is one of the key reasons why the state of our planet’s health is currently at breaking point.

The time for hoping that someone else will fix the problem has now passed. We find ourselves in a crucial and pivotal moment for the future of our planet. Our current path does not make for happy reading. It’s a really sad fact that since 1970, global wildlife populations have fallen by half. Oceans are suffering from extensive pollution and over-fishing, forests are being cut down at an alarming rate and we’re already seeing some of the devastating impacts that climate change is having upon the planet.

These issues can seem too big, too overwhelming and too complex, however – we all have the power to make changes and I think young people are at the heart of this. We can all take responsibility for our actions and carefully change how we should live our lives. Right now, more than ever, we must ask ourselves what future we want to create and what world we want to leave for young people and future generations to come.

I’m passionate about caring for our planet. That’s why I’m proud and grateful to support schemes and initiatives, such as WWF’s Green Ambassador Awards, that help and inspire young people to care for, love and nurture our precious world.

These incredible awards help and educate young people on sustainability and how to go about living as one with the environment around them.

As we approach the deadline for these awards, we’re seeking inspirational green ambassadors.

The winners will be presented with their awards at special events at their schools during the summer. The lucky award winners will each receive £500, to help boost green projects in and around their school.

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