WOULD someone please explain the decision of Ryedale District Council (RDC) to invest £3 million of tax-payers money into moving Malton Cattle Market to Eden Camp?

While it may be beneficial to some, it is effectively a private business that will be subsidised by our taxes.

Yet again, the priorities of the RDC leaders are all wrong, there are other more pressing issues like a committed plastics recycling service and the traffic congestion across our main towns to address.

Alongside your report of this planned investment by Ryedale, there was also a story about the report outlining the need to invest in major work in Norton and Malton to reduce traffic congestion and air pollution in the towns.

In the immediate future the joint North Yorkshire and RDC plan propose “quick wins”, such as dropping kerbs and introducing pedestrian crossings, which although helpful will not make a huge difference to congestion levels.

There are no dates suggested as to when and if more significant measures might be introduced that would make a difference to these bigger issues and dramatically improve the lives of residents, motorists, pedestrians and cyclists in Malton and Norton.

With the increased rail service looming in 2019 which can only make the congestion levels worse, surely investing Ryedale’s reserves in taking action on the proposed changes to road priorities, one-way systems and other congestion reducing measures would be a far better use of the council’s money.

Steve Mason, Great Habton

Need for response

THE letter from Lorraine Allanson (August 1) predicting a new golden age with fracking needs a response.

With regard to jobs, research into fracking in the USA indicates that the biggest increase in jobs is with HGV drivers required to carry out the hundreds if not thousands of heavy lorry movements to service the sites and to remove the large amounts of contaminated waste water. As for tax revenues, these companies will no doubt go down the Amazon road of maximum tax avoidance.

She again makes the statement about the gas industry co-existing with the farming and tourist industries, again failing to mention that so far this has been with conventional gas extraction and not fracking which is far more damaging to the environment.

As for fuel poverty, this can only be addressed in the long term by a reduction in energy costs. Nuclear generation, North Sea gas and privatisation all came with statements about cheaper energy, none of which came about. There is no reason to believe fracking will be any different.

Several reports have come out recently which should be of great concern. In February, Third Energy met North Yorkshire Police to discuss plans for a second shale gas well at Kirby Misperton.

Third Energy had apparently not made public or shared these plans with its community liaison group with whom it is supposed to be transparent and open.

A government report which concluded that shale gas extraction increases air pollution was unpublished for three years and then released just after ministers approved fracking in Lancashire.

There is every reason to think that the government and the authorities are putting the interests of big business before those of the people.

Phil and Chris Rowland, Pickering

Thanks for support

BECAUSE of unforeseen circumstances, I am having to retire from my position as manger of the Malton Hospital charity shop.

Along with good friends Brian Etheridge, Bruce Miller and myself, we were the instigators of opening the charity shop to support the Malton Hospital in April 1992.

Having said that I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the staff and volunteers who have supported me over the 26 years that I have managed the shop.

Also to express my gratitude to the customers and all who donated goods to sell. Without their support the shop would not have flourished.

During this period of time many thousands of pounds of equipment have been provided to Malton Hospital, for example X-ray machines, ultra sound equipment and items for the urology department and many more.

Sue Appleyard, Scagglethorpe

Help to find organ

WITH reference to the letter in the Gazette, August 8, about the Futurist Theatre.

Does anyone remember, or know, what has happened to the lovely organ which used to rise from below and then Leslie Sturdy would play lovely music and then it descended again?

My school friends and I used to regularly visit the Futurist in the 1950s. Later, we had a flat in Osborne Park and Lesley Sturdy lived in the house on the corner.

Carol Bumby, Wigginton