WHILE I am proud that developers and therefore new residents want to come to Pickering and while I recognise that it also benefits families to achieve an affordable home, I am concerned that there is a very big downside to this process.

While “consultation” does take place and when permission is granted, somewhere along the process the developer does give money to Ryedale District Council to deal with as they see fit.

As another 500/600 houses are being proposed for our town, I am concerned that it is becoming extremely difficult to get a doctors appointment. Sometimes waiting two weeks.

I need reassurance that serious consideration will be given to the needs of the current population.

I am not saying don’t build, but I am saying to the developer, all our councillors and Ryedale District Council planning officers ensure that things are put in place to address the basic fundamental services so that we who already live here can live happily alongside any future growth there may be.

The important thing isn’t necessarily what or how they are built, the important thing is that the existing community is able to access all the services that we have come to expect and deserve and that those services don’t lessen in any way.

Sue Cowan, Pickering

Excellent news

RECENT geological research based on seismic imaging reveals that fracking in the UK is likely to be far less profitable than “over-hyped” earlier predictions.

John Underhill, Professor of Exploration Geoscience at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, says it is too late for fracking to be successful in the way it has in the US.

Unlike the geology of Pennsylvania, where the Marcellus Shale contains more gas than under most of Europe, the UK’s shale deposits were fractured by tectonic activity along the Atlantic plate 55m years ago, causing much of the gas to escape.

This view is independently confirmed by Quentin Fisher, Professor of Petroleum Geoengineering at the University of Leeds, who says this highlights “the great uncertainties that exist regarding the likely productivity of shale in the UK”. Also in agreement is Stuart Haszeldine, Professor of Sedimentary Geology at Edinburgh University, who says the combination of these factors with the higher costs of operating in Britain, would make it “extremely difficult” for a UK shale gas industry “to match the low price of shipping imports of shale oil and gas from the US."

This new research is excellent news for the people of Ryedale, but not so good for the Conservative Party, who may be asked to return tens of thousands in “donations” from fossil fuel corporations.

Dr Peter Williams, Malton

Blooming good

THANK you to the people of Malton and Norton who have worked hard planting the hanging baskets, tubs and troughs of lovely flowers.

It is a real pleasure shopping and wandering round the towns.

Florence Smith, Welburn

Wartime miracles

ALL across our towns and cities, the blockbuster film Dunkirk is creating great interest and fascination.

There is, however, one major fact not mentioned in the film.

Many of those who see the film will be interested to learn that the situation was actually so desperate, King George VI called for a National Day of Prayer on May 26, 1940.

In a national broadcast he asked the people of Britain to pray for God’s help.

Thousands of special services were held across the country and literally millions of people poured into churches to pray.

Two significant events immediately followed. Firstly, a violent storm arose over the Dunkirk region grounding the Luftwaffe which had been killing thousands on the beaches.

Secondly, a great calm descended on the Channel, the like of which hadn’t occurred for a generation, enabling the hundreds of tiny boats to rescue 338,000 soldiers, rather than the estimated 30,000.

It was the timing of these events immediately after the Prayer Day which led people to speak of “the miracle of Dunkirk” and Sunday, June 9 was officially appointed as a Day of National Thanksgiving.

To coincide with this film, details of various Wartime Miracles are being sent to thousands of churches across the UK so as to give congregations hope and reassurance, much needed in our unsettling times.

If anyone would like this uplifting information, email strengthenthefaithful@gmail.com clearly putting Wartime Miracles in the subject box. Thank you.

Rev J Willans, Surrey