I walk the line

Dear Editor,

When in the summer months, I walk from Stockbridge to Overton along the disused railway line. I pass under several disused railway bridges and the complicated ones near the Mayfly Pub.

I love to see these and admire the workmanship and the mason’s craft.

The remains of the bridge at Collingbourne Ducis pictured in your copy (page 12, July 16 edition) would surely be cheaper to repair than remove. This would then prolong our legacy.

The path looks well worn. So many walkers would long to admire and enjoy the remains of their own heritage.

Once gone, lost forever.

Derek Weels, Martin Way, Andover

Climate Change

Dear Editor,

Most of us will have watched the floods in Germany and Belgium with considerable shock and great sympathy for the poor inhabitants. Our hearts go out to them all. Earlier in the week and still ongoing are the massive forest fires raging in the western United States. Again, this is another great natural disaster but fortunately with fewer casualties so far.

In both cases the problem lies with a changing climate: too much rain in Germany and not enough in the USA. Both can be directly attributed to global warming, and we have had similar dislocations to our own climate here.

The climate emergency is real. These situations were not unexpected. In both cases warnings by the weather experts were largely ignored. In the West as in the rest of the world the climate emergency is very real.

Advanced economies are not immune to these natural disasters driven by human activity and it is too easy for us to assume that adequate protection and infrastructure is in place. Was there complacency? In Germany the only way to save lives was to evacuate early but there was not the fear of the power of nature which we should never underestimate.

The best way to show nature the respect it deserves is to stop polluting our environment and bring global warming under control. Every little bit helps: walking and cycling rather than using a car, or sorting out and disposing of the rubbish properly.

The role of government should be to make it easier for us to do so, and not to put barriers in our way. Government also needs to make it harder not easier for those companies who make a mockery of our laws, and put the corporate profit before their public responsibilities. One quick win for Tory Test Valley Council is to introduce doorstep glass collections. Tory Basingstoke has it. Lib Dem Eastleigh has had it for years. What is wrong with our local council?


Luigi Gregori, Charlton Road, Andover

Mylen Road

Dear Editor,

Further to my recent letter about traffic problems in Mylen Road, I feel the need to comment again. My husband and I were watching TV when we saw a flashing blue light outside our house. Venturing outside to investigate, we found that another accident had taken place.

A car had come over the railway bridge, it had smashed into the back of a parked car at such a speed that he had shunted the car 12 feet into the vehicles in next layby, causing them to concertina into each other, thereby damaging four cars.

Thankfully, no one was seriously injured. But as I mentioned in my last letter, it is only a matter of time before that is a fatality.

I ask again – when is something going to be done about the traffic problem in Mylen Road?

Marie Dyke, Mylen Road

Letters vs calls

Dear Editor,

I was interested to read Margaret Reichlin’s letter in the Andover Advertiser on July 23, 2021, because I have similar frustrations with modern methods of communications. In fact, I wrote to you about it several months ago, but my letter was not published.

Communication with various organisations by phone has become difficult.

Writing letters is not much better - replies are standardised sentences/paragraphs and are very little sensible or relevant to my questions. The way one is often addressed is to say the least and has too much familiarity to people one doesn’t know.

Margaret Reichlin did not mention the local council in her letter. I’ve tried calling them twice in the last few days, but never did find a fellow human. I have now written to them, and hopefully await a reply.

To give credit where credit is due, last year during the first lockdown for Covid, I had occasion to write to the Fleet Air Arm Museum at Yeovilton. I was thrilled to receive a quick reply which was polite, helpful and showed interest in my query and was well written - plus copies of relevant documents. I was pleased to send my grateful thanks.

Constance E Morrell

Address supplied

Climate disaster

Dear Editor,

Tesco is misleading its customers by claiming that they no longer sell beef from Brazil, and therefore, claiming they have nothing to do with the environmental disaster occurring in the Amazon affecting world’s climate. The Amazon rainforest now emits more CO2 emissions (carbon dioxide) than it absorbs. The world is entering a phase of dangerous climate change.

Meat and dairy products have the most damaging effects on our environment. Animal agriculture livestock and animal feed is responsible for approximately 60 per cent of food-related climate emissions and is the most significant driver of deforestation.

Most of the deforestation attributed to animal agriculture occurs in South America’s Amazon. Soya which is widely traded and used mainly for animal feed is a significant component of many countries’ deforestation footprint.

An estimated 90 per cent of soybeans produced globally are used as a protein source in animal feed for meat and dairy production. Globally, just under half of all animal feed made from soybeans and other oilseed crops is consumed by chicken and other poultry.

Tesco needs to come clean and say if they are still buying meat from forest destroyers and if their pork and chickens are fed from deforested land. Otherwise, they are damaging their reputation.

Jeannette Schael, Tadley

Virus is with us

Dear Editor,

With many of the national Covid-19 restrictions now eased and a cautious return to freedoms we have long been missing, I would like to take the opportunity to thank your readers for all that they have done over the past year and more, and for the personal sacrifices made to keep each other and our communities safe across Hampshire.

The past months have been the most challenging that many of us can remember. Significant personal sacrifices have been made by thousands of local people – from our social care and health workers, to our teachers and educational support staff – and of course the many families who have been unable to visit loved ones in care homes, and everyone who has lost someone close to them to the pandemic.

It is to these residents, as well as the legions of community volunteers and the hundreds of thousands who have played their part by staying at home, getting tested and vaccinated, self-isolating, wearing face coverings and much more, to whom I would like to extend my sincere thanks.

Of course, the virus remains with us and the numbers testing positive are once again rising rapidly, so while we enjoy returning to a semblance of normality, I would urge the public to continue to exercise caution and to maintain the very helpful practices we have become so used to.

Doing this will help us to keep well and prepare for what may be a very challenging autumn and winter.

Cllr Keith Mans, leader of Hampshire County Council