MR – Your photograph (February 7) of a re-enactment by a wartime women’s army society featured two middle-aged women. In fact, the majority were young, unattached and fit enough to cope with agricultural work.
Similarly, the bomber crews of the Royal Air Force were not middle-aged but mostly young men, some even teenagers.
Perhaps the re-enactment societies should attempt to recruit more young people to show the reality of their representation at the forefront of the war.
Wooden studs beat metal doors kissing each other
SIR – As a member of a volunteer group that regularly installs wooden posts at field boundaries, I was intrigued by Michele Platman’s plea for the posts to be replaced with metal barriers (Letters, 10 February).
Wooden stiles are inexpensive (unlike metal gates). In a one-mile walk through several fields, a walker might encounter five or six uprights.
A stile kit will include two treads, four stubs (short wooden posts to support the steps) and perhaps a 5ft post to use as a support next to the stile.
In my volunteer group, we were being asked by our local authority to repair, replace or install a stud that had been flagged to the council as requiring attention. The uprights do not have to be unusable, as a replacement is cheap and easy to install.
All a walker has to do is report the exact location of unusable uprights to the council trail manager (a photograph is helpful). Volunteers will replace the amount within seven days of receiving the details.
It must be remembered that the public rights of way are on private land cultivated by hard working farmers. As tempting as it may be, it is not possible to develop smooth and easily accessible paths for “less able-bodied hikers”.
Housing for start-ups
SIR – British start-ups are held back by the high cost of housing and office space.
Talent is priceless in our most productive cities. Londoners spend nearly 40% of their income on rent. And, after paying a premium for talent due to rising housing costs, UK businesses are once again being penalized by some of the most expensive office rents in the world.
The UK has many assets for entrepreneurs: world-class universities, the financial center of London and the highest venture capital investment in Europe. But Berlin, Paris and Amsterdam are becoming more attractive as housing continues to become more expensive in London, Oxford and Cambridge. Silicon Valley is a cautionary tale, where the lack of housing has led to an exodus of founders and investors.
But there is reason to be optimistic. Simple tweaks to planning legislation could solve much of the problem. A new report from the Entrepreneurs Network outlines a series of reforms that could make millions of new homes available.
It is essential that the reforms are included in the next race-to-the-top bill. We urge Michael Gove, the Secretary of State for Levels, Housing and Communities, to seriously consider the pivotal role this bill could play.
Founder of the Entrepreneurs Network
Dr. Dylan Jones-Evans
Director, Enlli Associates
Director, ARC InterCapital Ltd
Dr. Cristiana Banila
Founder & CSO, Mitra Bio
Director EnviroMission Ltd
Managing Director, FieldHouse Associates
Founder, View from My Window
Anne-Laure Le Cunff
Founder, Ness Labs Ltd
Co-founder & CTPO, employment
CEO, Forte Medical Limited
Co-founder and CEO, Spotlight
Co-Founder, Fluid Stack
Co-Founder and COO, CAPSLOCK
CEO, Optimal Health
Founder, Impact Hustlers
Director, Dataphysix Ltd
Head of Research and Consulting, Beauhurst
Professor of Economic Geography, London School of Economics
Co-Founder, Future’s Venture
Founder and CEO, Better Dairy
Co-Founder and CTO, Telescope Analytics
Favor Mandanji Nyikosa
Co-founder and CTO, Augmize
Dr. Filip Auksztol
CEO, Quantum Boost Ltd
Founder and CTO, Simple Construction Software
Founder, Stealth Startup
David Murray Hundley
Co-Founder and CEO, Pario Ventures
Managing Partner, White Horse Capital
Founder, Gordon & Eden
CEO, Venntro Media Group
Group CEO, Indagate Group
CEO, Robinson Hambro Ltd
Founder, Tech London Advocates & Global Tech Advocates
Executive Chairman, Asset Match Limited
Co-founder and CEO, Apricot
Board Member, EISA
Founder and CEO, Learnerbly
CEO, Alison at home
Founder and CEO, Ramsden International
Owner, Forman & Field
Co-Founder and CEO, Spektrix Ltd
Co-founder and CTO, Imperium Drive
CEO, Digital Shadows
Co-Founder, Lindus Health
Dana Denis Smith
CEO, Obelisk Support
Principal Investigator, Creating Streets
Director of Research, The Adam Smith Institute
Founder, London YIMBY
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