Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Can Hare Coursing Be Justified Today?

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Can Hare Coursing Be Justified Today?

Article excerpt

Cruelty in all its forms is a fact of life, but over the years as society has become more civilised, eradication of some of its manifestations has been brought about.

Bear baiting, the hunting of badgers and cockfighting, formerly viewed as sport, are no longer part of the landscape. The British pride themselves as lovers of animals and on fair play. Against this background it is disconcerting to see hare coursing taking place in the Alnwick area and it is a shame that such events, which provide no benefit other than self-gratification to the few, should take place on land adjacent to what has until recently been land farmed with the environment and wildlife in mind.

One question seems paramount: can hare coursing, a purely recreational "sport" involving the destruction of wildlife, be justified in 21st-Century England?

ROB DICKINSON,

Real reason for the axe on coast line

THE Rail Passengers' Council is living in a dream world trying to oppose the SRA's decision to axe services on the Durham Coast line.

The real reason behind this decision is that all future main line routes will be electric, using modern electric trains with specially designed coach sets that only suit electric trains. Main line diesel trains are being phased out.

Thanks to the lack of consultation by Sunderland councillors prior to the installation of the Metro into Sunderland in 2002, it was installed on the direct route from Newcastle to Sunderland, instead of using alternative routes and preserving this vital link for main-line use for the benefit of all East Durham and Teesside. Why should this be a problem? Simple, the Metro and main line electric trains run on entirely different voltages, in addition the main line trains require much more substantial overhead wiring than that of the Metro (which is essentially a tram, requiring just side skirts to be used on roads.) Therefore main line electric trains cannot run on the same track as the Metro - and surely you cannot expect a rail operator to maintain a service using obsolete rolling stock, which do not have the latest in-built safety features.

DW GREEN,

East Herrington, Sunderland

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IT IS right that Saddam Hussein should stand trial for his crimes against humanity - so there is a clear message that despots cannot escape justice. …

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