Not all agencies the same...

PUBLISHED: 02:01 03 April 2008 | UPDATED: 08:57 10 June 2010

I am writing with regard to the recent terrible publicity surrounding the local Care Agency 1st React Healthcare. I should like to reassure the disabled, vulnerable and people who do need help that not all of our local care agencies fall into this categ

I am writing with regard to the recent terrible publicity surrounding the local Care Agency 1st React Healthcare.I should like to reassure the disabled, vulnerable and people who do need help that not all of our local care agencies fall into this category.I, myself, for almost five years, have had to have help from a care agency, namely Direct Home Assistance. I can say that without their help, encouragement and support I wouldn't be able to have the life I am able to live today. Most of our local carers are what the word means 'carers'.Mrs Anita Rook,12 Albert Place, Exmouth.THANKS FOR YOUR SUPPORTI want to take an opportunity to thank the people of Exmouth and Budleigh Salterton for their continued kind and very generous support for the local branch of Cancer Research UK. So far this year, we have held our annual jumble sale in Budleigh Salterton, which raised just over £500, and a weekend of collecting outside the Tesco superstore in Exmouth where we raised a further £998. An amazing and truly generous sum.It might be of interest to your readers to know that Cancer Research UK funds around 80 per cent of all cancer research in the UK, entirely from public donations, including the funding of clinical trials taking place at the Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital.Our next event is an antiques valuation evening to be held in the Public Hall in Budleigh Salterton where, for the princely sum of £7.50, one can bring an item of interest to be valued by Chris Hampton, of Hampton and Littlewood, enjoy a glass of wine and some light refreshments. The evening starts at 7pm; there is a raffle and a bar. Tickets are available from Lesleys Stationers and The Card Shop Too - both in the High Street - or by telephoning (01395) 444088.My thanks once again to our local people for their support. Jolyon Hunt,Chair,Cancer Research UK - Exmouth and Budleigh Salterton branch.LOOK AT THE OTHER SITEYour headline of "Visitor Centre Rethink", March 20, citing costs asociated with the Imperial Ground, leads some of us who have followed the EGVC saga to recommend the Project Group look at the other site considered as a close second venue.This alternative site uses the former bird hide, and ground down to and perhaps including the boat storage yard to the north of the estuary car park. Not only does this site have much better views of the birds and tidal flows, it also has access, via a footbridge across the railwayline, from Southern Road which does not add to the congestion at the Imperial Road roundabout. The lower build cost, and being on top of the SSSI, will help overcome the restriction in depth of the site. Spin-off advantages include being adjacent to the new cycle way, and increased footfall past Exeter Road shops into town. The temporary expediency of sticking the visitor centre above a proposed Leisure Centre might seem to offer a way of saving face, and a few million pounds, but it is woefully lacking in the vision behind the original project. Simon BoltPast chairman, Exmouth Chamber of Trade and member of Regeneration Design WorkshopWHO IS MAKING THE DECISIONS?Having eventually found my way in to attend the Exmouth annual town meeting on Monday evening, and having witnessed the most pitiful display of public accountability by elected members I have ever had the misfortune to see, I felt compelled to write and voice my concerns.Why is it that the mayor, a politician, was reduced to hiding behind the gavel, whilst the civil servant in the room, the town clerk, was given licence to speak at length on political issues? The mayor's report was a scant few minutes, and read out from a prepared statement, while the town clerk gave a very good and professional presentation and was able to speak for over half an hour without notes on issues ranging from crime and housing to national political trends. Quite remarkable! I have always understood it to be the role of the politicians to speak on the issues and the civil servants to sit quietly in the shadows, not the other way around!The concept of democratic accountability is something clearly lost on the mayor and her side-kick the deputy mayor, whose attitude towards the issues of deep concern to so many was only slightly surpassed by the fervour of the mayor's use of the gavel in trying to shut the public up.Why are the politicians in charge of Exmouth hiding behind the decisions of their political colleagues on East Devon District Council? Is it because they have no say of their own? Are they unable to stand up for Exmouth on any subject? Clearly they cannot speak for themselves, but what worries me the most is this: who is actually making the decisions about the future of Exmouth, who is actually in charge? Paul BuchananLiberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidate for East DevonGIVING IT AWAY WAS MISTAKEConcerning your story, Call from EDDC to work together for Exmouth (which apapeared on the Journal website) this situation has arisen because the county council, supposedly OUR representatives, gave the former teacher training college away to Plymouth University without any foresight as to what would happen if Plymouth later abandoned the site.They have asset stripped the college, selling off almost all of the halls of residence to private contractors to build flats for even more pensioners to join our ranks, topping up the university bank balance. There's not much left to sell and now they are off, have the affrontery to demand that we buy back what was given to them in the first place. If Sara Randall Johnson has to ask for intermediaries to "make contact" with Brian Greenslade for support, it just shows how little dialogue there must be between county and district, and doesn't bode well for the future of Exmouth or East Devon. It's about time that those who are elected to office did what the electorate expects, and put their party political priorities to one side and look after our interests. Mike Fairclough, 19 Withycombe Road,Exmouth. KINDNESS AND COMPASSIONI had to have my old, beloved cat "Tommy" put to sleep at home this week. Never an easy decision, believe me. I would like to thank Mrs Linda Salmon who has taken over Mr Bunting's practice at Howard House for her utmost kindness and compassion.He was about 20 years old and his health was deteriorating quickly. Linda, who has such a kind, caring and lovely manner, gave me as much time as I wanted. At the end, I cuddled Tommy. He was very sleepy, thanks to the 'pre-med' injection and when I was ready and my husband and I had said our goodbyes, Linda effortlessly gave him the final injection. He was sleeping peacefully and never felt a thing. Linda checked that his heart had stopped beating, stroked his head and I found the whole thing, thanks to Linda, not the dreadfully upsetting experience I feared.I would like to wish her all the best in her new practice. Animals pick up on tensions; they are very psychic. But this lady put my Tommy, normally terrified of people, completely at ease.We have buried him in his favourite, sunny spot under the date palm he loved to sit under.Christine and Alan Goodall,2 Powderham View, Exmouth.

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