FOR YEARS now we have been told of the effect of obesity and associated illnesses on the National Health budget, because of this the Government and sports associations encouraged people to adopt a more active and healthy lifestyle.

All over the country private health clubs, aerobic, line dance, zumba and fitness classes have sprung up, most of these do their movements to music for which the organiser has to pay an annual set fee for a Public Performance Licence.

From May, it is intended that this yearly set fee will be replaced by a payment per session.

This could mean that an organiser who runs 320 classes a year and presently pays £178.66 plus VAT per year could be faced with an annual outlay of more than £600 plus VAT by 2018.

Some instructors barely cover their costs as it is and claim the decision will more than treble the amount they must pay. Hundreds of fitness classes could be wiped out at a time when the nation’s obesity problem is putting increased strain on the NHS.

Surely such an increase will set back the Government’s aim for a healthier society and lead to more obesity and costs.

AP Cox, Heath Close, Holgate, York.


• YOU see people walking about who suffer from obesity but don’t seem to care.

Now the coalition Government and the Labour Party are coming up with the same suggestion, ie making manufacturers put on their food labels the contents of fat, sugar and salt.

Some manufacturers do this already, others don’t.

To get this over to everybody, what it needs is for all parties to get a motion put through Parliament whereby food manufacturers have to put on their products the total contents of what is in their foods.

It’s costing the NHS thousands of pounds in treating overweight people.

If the contents had to be displayed, then people could not complain about being overweight.

Tom Mitchell, Mendip Close, Huntington, York.