Store should pay to move fire station

BOTH Sainsbury’s and Tesco boast of how many local people they will employ if they are allowed to build a supermarket in Rye.

But I don’t believe they have mentioned how much they intend to pay these people. Sainsbury’s staff held a protest outside the company’s annual meeting last month, complaining about their poor pay.

Apparently the current minimum paid by Sainsbury’s is £6.31 an hour, rising to only £6.71 an hour after 15 years.

Tesco by contrast pays staff a minimum of £7 an hour.

So from a local employment perspective, Tesco would seem a better prospect than Sainsbury’s.

This year Sainsbury’s reported a nine per cent increase in underlying full-year profits to £665m.

Justin King, the supermarket’s chief executive, collected pay and bonuses of £3.24m. So they can’t plead poverty.

Moving to another issue, that of the proximity of the new supermarket to the fire station.

Surely the fire station is too close to the railway crossing anyway, and whoever builds the new supermarket should agree to pay for the relocation of the fire station to a more suitable site.

Alfred Douglas

Cinque Ports Street, Rye

I WAS not really surprised to read your recent article in the Observer saying patients in 1066 country who have suffered a stroke are not getting the vital care and treatment they need to fully recover.

NHS Rother and Hastings was said to be the second worst performing Primary Care Trust in the country with less than 40 per cent of stroke patients spending more than 90 per cent of their time in a specialist stroke unit.

A stroke is a medical emergency. Strokes happen when blood flow to your brain stops. Within minutes, brain cells begin to die.

Every second counts and immediate brain scans are required to diagnose whether a blood clot or a haemorrhage is involved to determine whether clot busting drugs should be administered.

A House of Commons Report in March 2010 “Progress in Improving Stroke Care” recommended that the Dept of Health should require all hospitals to provide timely access to scanning for all patients who might be eligible for the clot busting drug Thrombolysis.

I made enquiries of the Conquest Hospital if “timely access to scanning” was available and, after some delay, received the following reply:

“There is a thrombolysis protocol procedure in the Trust which requires us to scan a patient within the hour of request and this procedure is clearly understood by the CT team who react accordingly both in and out of hours. This is driven by the stroke team. At weekends there is an elective CT service run between 9am and 5pm both Saturday and Sunday so radiographers are on site working. After 5pm every evening the on call CT service is available and again radiographers are told when called if it is a patient being considered for thrombolysis.”

We must therefore live in hope that any radiographer called after 5pm Saturdays and Sundays will respond. Either that or pray we stay healthy at weekends!

J E Goldsworthy

Glengorse, Battle

MY heart went out to Hazel Hanley when I read her letter in the Observer, August 12.

My 91-year-old mother had the misfortune to be admitted to Benson Ward at the Conquest Hospital in October 2009.

She was suffering from a recurring urinary tract infection and was admitted to the hospital so they could find an antibiotic that would help her condition; she had become resistant to the usual medication administered for this problem.

This type of infection causes confusion in the elderly so imagine my surprise when I was telephoned several times by the staff on the ward to say, my mother was very confused and would I speak to her and explain why she was in hospital.

The staff seemed puzzled as to why she was confused as there had been no mention of dementia on her notes.

My mother wasn’t eating or drinking and was soaking wet each time I visited; I was changing her trying to make her comfortable.

There didn’t seem to be any attempt to encourage her to eat or drink and neither the doctor nor I were aware she wasn’t taking her tablets.

Mum was admitted to the ward on Tuesday, by Sunday she was curled up in bed deteriorating fast.

I asked for her to be transferred back to Clyde House nursing home were she had been resident for several months.

She arrived at the home confused, dehydrated, in a much worse state than she had left on the Tuesday.

The wonderful staff at the home spent time with her got her to eat drink and take her tablets and in less than a week she was sitting up in her chair laughing and talking. Mum died in April 2010 her last six months were happy and comfortable and when she died I was there and so were the staff who cared for her and loved her.

I must make it clear that in other parts of the hospital, especially A&E, the treatment my family and I have received has been fantastic, but the treatment and care of elderly patients needs to be improved.

Jean Jones


I AM writing to say thank you for the wonderful care my mum received from nursing staff at the Conquest Hospital on the Medical Assessment Unit (MAU) from June 17 to 19 and Mirrlees Ward from June 19 to 21, where she sadly passed away.

Her family would particularly like to thank the nursing staff on duty on Mirrlees Ward during that time.

They were so kind, caring and compassionate that it comforted us to know mum was being well looked after in her last few days and for her to die with dignity.

We would also like to say thank you to Mrs Darwood, general manager of the emergency department, Dr Leonard, MAU Consultant and Dr Dennison, Department of Medicine for the Elderly consultant, for their support, compassion and care.

Too often the staff at the Conquest are criticised for their lack of care but in the case of my mum’s it was very caring and professional.


Yew Tree Close, Hastings

IT would seem that Stagecoach are ensuring that their new bus time tables give them an economic operation here in East Sussex without considering the customers wider requirements of travelling further a field.

The old 325 service came here in Rye Harbour twice an hour, just after the hour and half hour, and using the half hour bus delivered you to the station within 15 or so minutes to get a ticket and catch a train going east or west and beyond!

Now the new 312 service only provides one bus an hour and that’s just after the hour and leaving you at the station with a 45 minute wait for any train.

One can understand to some extent the need to reduce some or part of the existing services in the present climate but they cut the wrong 50 per cent.

So what do you think of our chances of getting it switched around?

In the meantime I wait for the next Stagecoach...

Roy Roberts

Rye Harbour

CONGRATULATIONS to Clair Gow-Moger on winning the ‘Best Hidden Garden’ in this years Battle in Bloom Competition (Observer, August 5).

With no intention to detract from Clair’s achievement in any way, as I am sure it was well deserved, I would like to set the record straight.

My back garden was not actually entered in the competition this year, nor will it be next year, as having won ‘Best Hidden Garden’ for the last five years consecutively, I was told that I may not win this category for the next two years to give others a chance.

Wendy Mansfield

Netherfield Hill, Battle

CLIVE Bishop is wrong on two counts (letters 14/8/11).

An MP’s primary duty is to his or her’s constituents; likewise an MP who happens to be a Minister.

There is absolutely no reason why a Minister cannot resign to fight their constituents’ cause - after all, throughout history, our most highly regarded MPs defied their Party Whip, and gained greater respect for so doing.

Clive is wrong in his conclusion that “we should separate the executive powers of Government from the MPs representing us”.

His is a recipe for an elected dictatorship against which abuse of power the British co-wrote the post-war German ‘Basic Law’ constitution and the European Convention on Human Rights.

It is these which protect German citizens from the political excesses of an unelected EU Commission (to bail out their flawed Euro) and elected MEPs who swear vows of loyalty, for all time, to the absolute furtherance of the EU socio-political EU project, regardless of their citizens’ wishes.

The first step to restoring democracy is abolition of the Party Whip - a serious omission by recent AV and PR proponents!

Barry M Jones

Bixley Lane, Beckley

We, the tax payers, own more than 80 per cent of the Royal Bank of Scotland and you would think that we would have some say in what our company does.

Not so! Despite Britain having signed up to the international treaty to ban the manufacture and use of cluster bombs, together with over a hundred other nations, RBS has been investing in the very companies that are involved in their manufacture.

No mean investment either! They have invested $80million in these companies in the last year.

We hear government words on how they will curb atrocities in the banking world but little has been achieved and the impression is that RBS regard us as puppets with no heart to object.

This is an insult to tax payers. I urge everyone to write to the RBS chief executive and your MP and don’t mince your words; these cluster bombs remain deadly for years and will kill and maim indiscriminately years after a war, as in Kosovo, was finished.

Tony Smith

Brownbread Stud, Ashburnham