Allow me the right to write

Allow me to respond to the rude, unpleasant gibe with which Mr Lambert opportunist-style prefaced his contribution last week.

Mr Lambert, Hitler ranted. I don’t. He was racist. I am not. He put people in camps for expressing their views, he muzzled the press. The idea appals me.

What would you like? That I shut up just to please you? Maybe the knock on my door in the middle of the night and the men in black?

I avail myself of a right people died to protect. So if I choose to write frequently to these columns, that is my right. The editor has the choice of whether or not to include any of my letters.

Mr Lambert could save his blood pressure by simply avoiding any letter bearing my name...

I feel strongly about many things – people know my focus if they read these columns often enough. Injustice, intolerance, smug indifference, people denied basic needs. But he doesn’t have to read

a word of it!

What Mr Lambert means, I guess, is that he does not like what I have to say very often, if at all. (But be warned, as Mr Ayling has revealed, it could happen to you Mr Lambert, one day you might agree with me on something.)

I served as an elected councillor for 14 years and had the honour to be mayor. I don’t think that happens by keeping your pen rusty.

Well, Mr Lambert, there are those who get paid or otherwise who are enabled to write regular columns in this newspaper, and I often find myself annoyed/appalled at what they trot out. But that’s the thing, you see – it’s a free country. Even in Cardinals Drive.

When I eventually found my natural father only a few years ago, he wanted to know what I had done with my life. I explained – to a man who did such courageous things, of whom it was said at his military funeral last year ‘he was a man of honour’ – but my record in life seemed hardly relevant.

He said in a thoughtful way:

“So I see you have made something of yourself.”

Mr Lambert, that’ll do me.

Jan Cosgrove

Longford Road,

Bognor Regis