Your say: letters to the editor

The Third Battle of Ypres in 1917, or Passchendaele as it is sometimes known, was actually a series of battles, Menin Road, Polygon Wood, Broodseinde and Poelcappelle spread over over more than two months. The final battle was that for the Passchendaele Ridge, which proved to be a ridge too far due to the atrocious weather conditions with shell holes filled with liquid mud that buried the dead and sucked in the living. The battle started on October 12, 3rd Division's Monash asked Haig to delay attack due to weather but he refused. In the area allocated to the 9th Brigade the attack was led out at 6am by the 34th Battalion, Maitland's Own. They, and the other battalions of the 9th Brigade, were slaughtered by the German artillery and machine guns. At Messines in June the 34th had 36 days straight in the trenches and took a beating and Passchendaele further depleted its fighting strength.

To mark the centenary of this battle, the Maitland Passchendaele Centenary Committee has planned a series of events for October.  At MRAG there will be an exhibition of nearly 40 photos from the AWM. The Maitland Museum will host a collection of WW1 artifacts related to the 34th Battalion at Brough House.  There will be a parade at Maitland Park on the 14th and there is already a Facebook page dedicated to Passchendaele.  

Peter Bogan

NARROW ROADS

STILL PROBLEMS: The Hunter Expressway has been a great benefit but still has poor access for the western suburbs.

STILL PROBLEMS: The Hunter Expressway has been a great benefit but still has poor access for the western suburbs.

I live in James St, Horseshoe Bend.  Parking is allowed on one side of  the road only, making it a fairly narrow thoroughfare (only allowing one direction of traffic at a time).  It would not take much for a car to come up on the gutter and knock someone down.

There are many houses with children on this street and cars travel at excessive speed.  There has been at least one accident in the six months or so that I have lived there (3 cars were written off as a driver plummeted into three parked cars).  It was very fortunate that there were no serious injuries. This would be an ideal street to have a 40km/h speed limit.

Jane Harvey

HEDDON GRETA TRAFFIC

Maitland was virtually ignored in the planning and building of the Hunter Expressway. Cessnock Road and Mount Vincent/Buchanan Road should have been upgraded concurrently with expressway build, instead there is still not even a plan. As a further insult to this city the western area does not even have a link.

The expressway does nothing in facilitating East/West traffic movement in the Maitland LGA, so we still need the Thornton to Lochinvar bypass. 

All these problems could have been avoided if the expressway had been built on the cheaper route (not passing over the difficult Sugar Loaf area) starting from the Beresfield roundabout area, passing south of the Maitland tip and Gillieston Heights thence to Branxton.

John from Bolwarra

What the RMS spokesman doesn't say is that RMS ignored the warnings of councillors and council officers, and diluted the conditions on these developments, so that works on this State Road were to be carried out later in the development cycle than council planners had recommended.

Graham Smith

HEALTH SERVICES

The NSW Government will fast track public patients’ access to endoscopies in the Hunter New England Local Health District under this year’s Innovations in Cancer Control Grant Program.

I can announce that a $141,000 NSW Health grant will fund a review of cases on waiting lists to ensure patients who meet national guidelines for colonoscopy or gastroscopy receive priority treatment. We want to make sure people at risk of coloctoral cancer get the timely investigation they need.

Scot MacDonald, Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter