Letters to the editor

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Energy: Time to make changes?

Sir, – After the winter, many of us are dreading getting our energy bills – and sadly many people have had to cut back on food or heating because of the cost. Yet we shouldn’t be paying this much.

Report after report, most recently from the Competition and Markets Authority, shows that we are being over-charged by the corporate monopoly that is the Big Six energy companies – and the most vulnerable are paying the most.

It’s obvious that our energy system is broken – yet our government is pushing the same flawed approach aboard, including using £100 million of aid money to support a disastrous energy privatisation system in Nigeria.

Before completion, the results have been disastrous: higher prices, blackouts and poorer service. The newly privatised companies even had to be bailed out by the central bank last year.

With 68 per cent of the UK population supporting publicly-owned energy, it’s time we stopped propping up big energy companies in here and abroad. But will the next government be prepared to act? – Yours etc.,

Annette Lillig

4 Stanedykehead


Edinburgh EH16 6YE

Warning for women

Sir, – I’m writing to let your readers know that March is Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month.

Each year in the Scotland 616 women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer and 399 lose their lives.

As there is no screening programme for ovarian cancer, it’s vital that every woman is aware of the symptoms – persistent bloating, difficulty eating, abdominal pain and needing to wee more urgently – and visit their doctor with any concerns at the earliest opportunity.

Yet our latest research shows that 85 per cent of women in Scotland say that they are not confident about spotting the symptoms of ovarian cancer. We want this to change.

It’s not too late for your readers to get involved. We are asking people to get involved in our 50s Challenge by telling 50 people about ovarian cancer or raising £50 for Target Ovarian Cancer.

The money your readers raise could help us fund new research and get information and support to women with ovarian cancer in the local area.For more information or to sign up to the 50s challenge visit www.targetovariancancer.org.uk or give our events team a call on 020 7923 5474. – Yours etc.,

Annwen Jones

Chief Executive of Target Ovarian Cancer

Tell us your carbon monoxide story

Sir, – Were you ever exposed to carbon monoxide due to a faulty boiler, cooker or a BBQ?

Has a family member or friend ever fallen ill because of this deadly gas?

The CO – Be Alarmed campaign is looking for people who have first-hand experience of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning to help raise awareness of the everyday danger.

CO – Be Alarmed works hard to raise awareness of this every day danger and keep people safe.

One of the ways we do this is by giving CO victims a voice but we cannot do this without people willing to share their story and spread the word.

Carbon monoxide is a silent killer that affects thousands of people each and every year. We here at CO – Be Alarmed have campaigned hard to help people stay safe but the most effective way of helping people is through telling true stories. If you have an experience with CO, please get in contact and help us save lives.If you think you can help us keep people safe by telling your story, contact press@energy-uk.org.uk or call 0207 747 2941. – Yours etc.


by email

Fears for dementia tests

Sir, – There has been a lot in the press about dementia, including the increased risk of dementia in people with diabetes.

Many of your readers with diabetes may be worried about this, the tests that may be carried out and what may happen as a result of the tests.

Our March newsletter contains an article about dementia and whether screening the over 65s is a sensible way to proceed. Your readers may be reassured to know that research suggests that there is a 20 year lead time for cognitive decline, so there is time to prevent or delay the onset of dementia by changes to a more healthy lifestyle.

We have booklets to help people change their lifestyle – meal plans for healthy, everyday eating and a booklet about exercise for all ages.

We are happy to send your readers our newsletter and these publications free of charge.

Readers just need to contact us on 01604 622837, e-mail jenny@iddtinternational.org or write to IDDT, PO Box 294, Northampton NN1 4XS. – Yours etc.,

Jenny Hirst

InDependent Diabetes Trust

PO Box 294, Northampton