Letters to the editor (July 11)

LOCAL ICON: Graham Mason from Mason's Sports Store, on The Boulevarde, Toronto. Mason's first started trading in the 1930s. Picture: David Stewart
LOCAL ICON: Graham Mason from Mason's Sports Store, on The Boulevarde, Toronto. Mason's first started trading in the 1930s. Picture: David Stewart

Reasons for longevity

READING about the closure of Mason's Sports Store, bringing to an end over 70 years of proud retailing history, got me to thinking about just how many iconic family businesses the Toronto district has produced.

Obviously, space restrictions limit the list but some that come to mind include Avery Real Estate, Verdun Hiles, Triggs Motors, Hirecraft Marine, Toronto Auto Electrics, John Ryan's Landscaping, T C Frith, Smithy's Shoes, L J Hooker (Formerly Carnaby Sales), Sew City, Samson's Palace, Rearden Fencing, Heggs and McLean Butchery, Boulevarde Boutique and, of course, many others. Some of these have stood the test of time and are still going strong today in no small part due to their good old personal service and value for money.

Family businesses such as these have earned the respect of their loyal customers through hard work over the years and rightly deserve our congratulations on their longevity and success.

- Ian King, Warners Bay

This is getting serious

THE following is a copy of my letter to Lake Macquarie City Councillors:

I have not written to you sooner regarding the proposal to erect a six-storey building in Bath Street, Toronto, because I felt there was no possibility of it reaching fruition.

However, as time passes it appears to me there is a definite chance the construction of such a mistake could possibly occur despite overwhelming opposition from the Westlakes community. (The reasons for that opposition have been clearly documented so I shall refrain from repeating them.)

As I understand it, people stand for council because they hope to improve the local government area and carry out the will of the residents. So far, Lake Macquarie City Council, in this instance, appears to be completely ignoring the overall wishes of its residents by blindly continuing with the preliminaries involved in preparation for the Bath Street project.

Thus I urge you to do all in your power to prevent the continuation of it, and by doing so preserve the natural beauty of the Toronto foreshore.

- A J Campbell, Toronto

Fair go on foreshore

PEOPLE remain loyal to political parties only when they feel heard. When they feel ignored a community will make other political choices. This willingness to change was starkly shown at the federal election when there was a savage swing against Labor in the Hunter electorate.

We have six Labor councillors in Lake Macquarie. This council seems determined to develop a multi-storey building on the Toronto foreshore. This is in the face of consistent community resistance and the strong expression that this area be used as open public space.

The message we receive is that development trumps public foreshore space, and the expressed desires of the community are ignored. Lake Macquarie Council are not listening and are not representing our needs.

It is particularly galling that several of the councillors supporting this project are doing so under the Labor banner. Labor is a party which signals that it is progressive about environmental issues, wants to listen to the community, and seeks grassroot consensus.

The Labor platform proudly states "A fair go for all Australians".

Does that statement include the protection of our precious foreshore spaces for the benefit of everyone?

- Henry Wellsmore, Carey Bay

Priorities, please

WITH our Ashley the new world number one, the Ashes series against the old enemy on the way, Melbourne Storm clear on the NRL table and the Bunnies dropping four straight, we should put our priorities back in order. We don't need to be fulminating about Israel Folau. He made his own bed.

- Ron Elphick, Buff Point

Other opinions