THANK you for a brave and well thought-out leader (August 26) on the Notting Hill Carnival. It stood out as a beacon of understanding amid all the fuss and negative sentiments expressed before this important event. With racism so deeply inbred in society at all levels — it has simply become unfashionable to voice such sentiments — the Notting Hill Carnival is an occasion for all the community to come together. To ban it would deepen Britain's racial divide which to my mind is more important and potentially more explosive than the NorthSouth split.
I attended the Carnival this weekend and was impressed not only by the spirit of harmony and joy in the air, but also by the attitudes of organisers, police and public in acting sensitively yet firmly to ensure that there was no trouble. Long may this Carnival continue.
London W11 Phillip Dodd From the former Anglican Bishop of Southwark.
MALCOLM Muggeridge stated in his article in the Catholic Herald of last week that the late Sir John Betjeman sought to evade military service in the last war. This is untrue and a sad slur on the character of a devoted patriot. John Betjeman, who was a friend for 50 years, applied to the RAF, but he was turned down as unsuitable for enlistment. He was subsequently conscripted on behalf of the government for secret service work in Dublin.
t Mervyn Stockwood