ES Views: More armed police would help foil such awful attacks

A police officer places flowers and a photo of Pc Keith Palmer on Whitehall after the Westminster attacks: Dominic Lipinski/PA

Tragically, we have lost another police officer’s life due to the policy of not arming more officers.

We continue to live in the Dark Ages by persisting with this idiotic policy of not allowing a police officer to be protected from whoever presents a threat to them.

I spent 25 years in the Met Police and luckily survived some risky situations. If the officer who was killed was armed and saw this man approaching within the precincts of the Houses of Parliament, the attacker would not have got close enough to stab him.

The Government needs to wake up to the reality of the dangerous world we live in and protect our police officers properly.
Don Williams

Yesterday's events were shocking but not unexpected. I lived in London for some 10 years in the Seventies and Eighties and the public had to be vigilant then with the IRA and the Cold War with Russia to think about.

Such events as happened on Wednesday are frightening and tragic. But we must remember we have the very best security services in the world to keep us safe.

We have been through two world wars and several other conflicts since then. We are the seat of all democracy and no terrorist or other militant organisation will ever take that away from us.
Brian George

After the attacks in Germany and France, we were told London would have more armed police support. So why were the policemen not armed yesterday?

The terrorist may have been deterred if he saw the officer had a gun and perhaps the death of PC Keith Palmer might have been avoided. The Met must be honest and admit it that should have had better security around that area.
Jo Mercer

With Nice, Berlin and now London experiencing attacks involving vehicles, we need to think about how we can protect large groups of pedestrians in such situations.

My solution would be to install mini-bollards between the road and the pavement, which they have in France, to stop cars from mounting and colliding with people.

It is clear that something needs to be done and fast before another such tragedy.
Brendan Smith

Hearing the breaking news from Parliament Square yesterday afternoon, for the first time in seven years I longed to be back in the capital, out on the street and showing solidarity with Londoners, just as we did during the IRA bombings of the Seventies and the 7/7 bombings.

This lovely city, with an immense heart, will overcome this.
Esme Rust


A separate London makes no sense

A unionist looks at Nicola Sturgeon’s call for another referendum on Scottish independence and sees desperation but Labour MP David Lammy sees a model he would like to emulate [“London must look to be a city-state if hard Brexit goes ahead, Comment, March 20].

Some of his points are valid — fiscal devolution to London, for example, is a good thing. But he fears Brexit will lead to London and the rest of the UK becoming more separate and says the answer is for the capital to become a semi-autonomous city-state.

London is great precisely because we are part of the UK. We should all work to make Brexit work for the whole country, rather than follow Lammy’s advice and seek a separate London.
Shaun Bailey, Conservative London Assembly member


Follow Toronto's lead on housing

Kate Hilpern’s article [“Laying the foundations for change”, March 21] is full of good ideas but they are too complicated to be an effective supply strategy. To address the dire housing shortage in London and the South-East we must look at both sides of the supply-and-demand equation.

Leaving the EU may help to reduce future demand for housing. As for supply, building more dwellings for childless households at the same time as building homes with gardens for families is a simple two-track supply policy which worked for 40 years in Toronto. Perhaps it could work in the UK too?
Howard Rafael


Chiltern's railway badly needs investment

Regarding your supplement “London — The Future”, it is regrettable that the list of rail improvements doesn’t mention the Chiltern suburban service between Marylebone and West Ruislip.

This has the worst service frequency in London — its two Sudbury stations are closed all weekend and one of them, Sudbury and Harrow Road, has just eight trains a day.

This is just one of the routes which is crying out for a takeover and makeover by Transport for London.
Graham Larkbey

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Private sector can tackle pollution

The “super-inquiry” on air pollution called for by the parliamentary select committees is of course welcome [March 21].

That said, there is also a critically important role for the private sector to play. We work with hundreds of businesses to develop projects that have a tangible positive impact on the quality of the air we breathe and to mitigate some of the worst effects of pollution.

By combining the energy of the private sector to implement change with the Government’s ability to tackle big issues, we have a chance to solve the scourge of air pollution.
Susannah Wilks, managing director, Cross River Partnership


Tubes are too full of discarded papers

As a frequent visitor to London I am often puzzled as to why commuters on the Tube read the free papers avidly, save for the part that says “Take your free paper with you. Do not litter”.

The state I see train carriages left in, especially during morning rush-hour, is disgusting. Would people leave litter on the streets like this?

Commuters should be ashamed of their messiness. Londoners should clean up after themselves.
Paul Tapner

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Palmer is steering the right course

It was refreshing to read Matt Majendie’s interview with Formula 1 driver Jolyon Palmer [“Jolyon would rather be down Clapham pub than in Monaco”, March 22].

As he is now at Renault earning seven figures every year, it would be understandable if Palmer joined British driving legends Jenson Button, Lewis Hamilton and David Coulthard in moving to the tax haven of Monaco. Instead, he continues to live a quiet life in Clapham.

It’s admirable that Palmer wants to stay away from the limelight and make his mark on the track. Good luck on Sunday, Jolyon.
D Joiner

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