Real tenners?, Greyhound bridge bus lane criticism, change needed on railways, social care in crisis

Royal Bank of Scotland and Bank of Scotland notes.
Royal Bank of Scotland and Bank of Scotland notes.
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Readers’ letter, February 12

During a family discussion about not liking being given Scottish banknotes, I recalled reading that they are not legal tender, even in Scotland.

In order to confirm this I researched on the internet. I am hoping to warn readers of my findings.

Scottish notes are a legal ‘currency’, but not legal tender (even in Scotland).

For example, if you go into a shop to buy a hammer which is for sale at £10, you can hand over an English £10 note and walk out of the shop.

If you hand over a Scottish £10 note, the shopkeeper may accept or refuse it as currency.

If he refuses to accept it and you leave the note and go out of the shop with the hammer, you can be prosecuted for shoplifting (failing to pay with legal tender).

Interestingly, if you bank with the Bank of Scotland, you can go into a branch and deposit Scottish notes and have your account credited with the face value. If you make a withdrawal, the bank is legally bound to only issue English notes.

Steve Hinde, address supplied

Bus lane is of no benefit

I am contacting you to express my disdain at the decision to remove a lane previously open to general traffic, replacing it with a bus lane on Greyhound Bridge in Lancaster.

The decision to make such a change was not made logically, provides no benefit and actually has damaging consequences.

Since the introduction of the bus lane on Greyhound Bridge, it has been noticeably slower when driving through the city centre. This has resulted in increased congestion, this not only affects those roads but all surrounding streets.

On the bridge itself, there is a lane change that has always been there. This lane change has been made far more dangerous due to the fact there is now one busy left hand lane instead of two quieter left lanes.

This makes merging in from the right much more difficult and increases the risk of collision.

Antony Graham, Lymm Avenue, Lancaster

Railways have to change

May I suggest an appropriate slogan for rail fare campaigners? How about ‘Fair Rises not Fare Rises!’?

There is a fundamental problem with regard to the structure of running the railways for you have, on the one hand, private railway companies running on tracks which are, on the other hand, maintained by Network Rail, along with stations run by various combinations of the railway companies and Network Rail.

This results in the absurd system of Network Rail paying the affected train company if it is Network Rail’s fault that the train company cannot run its timetable or, if the train company is at fault, then it pays Network Rail.

This allows each of the two parties to blame each other, thus the argument for renationalisation of the railways is strong.

Sadly it seems some railway unions are also stuck in the past with their strikes and need get round the negotiating table with the train companies in order that their members can fulfil a vital role on the trains.

A railway enthusiast, address supplied

Let’s turn social care crisis round

The NHS 10-year plan is encouraging but the Government must now address social care and its integration with the health service.

We welcome the plan’s focus on helping people back home more quickly. We also support the focus on preventative public health measures.

But these must now be supported by a similar emphasis on good social care. Greater integration and a fit-for-purpose social care system would reduce demand for hospital services.

We eagerly await the social care green paper. After numerous delays by a succession of governments, this is a chance to turn the crisis around.

Jane Ashcroft, CBE, Chief executive of Anchor Hanover, England’s largest provider of care and housing for older people