I was surprised to read of Professor Rod Thomson’s overt support for the southern link road, reader's times June 2, and his assertion that it will improve the health of the people of the county.

As many have pointed out in this paper, there is no evidence at all that the traffic in the city will diminish to any significant extent, in fact a robust argument could be made that 6500 new homes with possibly up to 10,000 extra cars will do the opposite for both air quality and safety, let alone congestion.

As director of public health, he must realise that these new homes will put further pressure on our hospital services ; the extent of such demands, as far as I know, have not yet been fully planned or costed. Similarly, the extra infrastructure pressures on sewerage and water are highly unsure and, as Thomson must know, are the cornerstones of public health.

Politicians are free to make such assertions, as in the recent letter. However it behoves public servants to confine their remarks to the facts.

Prof.Richard Wise


Previously a non-Executive director of the Health Protection Agency