SIR – Since early March, my wife and I, both in our eighties, have been following the guidelines laid down by the Government – and no, we do not find them in the least confusing.

We are, however, confused by the large crowds of people gathering on beaches and at pubs, making no attempt at social distancing. Street parties are springing up and people are complaining when their holidays are disrupted.

It seems to me that the older generation is being asked to keep quiet and keep out of the way for the indefinite future.

Mike Aston
Stourbridge, Worcestershire


SIR – It is hardly surprising that people are confused about the Government’s rules, particularly when our brains are being fried in the heat. Every day we are bombarded with statistics – which, as any statistician knows, can be interpreted in a variety of ways. So we hear different things from different news outlets.

I have my own interpretation of what I’m being told – and that is, essentially, to keep away from other people. If you are desperate to see others, keep it in the family.

Robert Bell
Brentford, Middlesex


Video appointments

SIR – The suggestion that more GP appointments could be carried out by video link has been met with a predictable overreaction.

Surely common sense will prevail. If, for example, a physician needs a closer look at a lump that is causing concern, they will obviously suggest that the patient visits the surgery.

Such an arrangement is preferable to sitting in a waiting room filled with people suffering from who knows what, all taking a 10-minute appointment when most just need a quick word of advice or a prescription.

Another advantage of video appointments is that they are less badly affected if patients fail to turn up for them.

Steve Black


Waste not

SIR – Rev Philip Foster (Letters, July 26) suggests that we should incinerate our rubbish and sewage sludge to generate electricity.

However, a lot of sewage sludge is already used productively as fertiliser on farmland. On behalf of Greenpeace, I once examined the possibility of also using it – suitably stabilised and armoured – to form earthen sea defences, as much of it is generated at or near seaside resorts, which are often adjacent to low-lying coastlines.

Dr Bruce Denness
Niton, Isle of Wight


SIR – This country already has a good record on turning rubbish into electricity. We have at least three plants in England: in Cornwall, in east London and in Suffolk (and those are just the ones of which I am aware).

The one in Suffolk takes waste from neighbouring counties, recycles metal waste, and sorts the residual stones, pebbles and ash for road-building, among other things.

J M Savage
Felixstowe, Suffolk


Holidays in Greece

SIR – In your report, you quote Dale Vince, the owner of Ecotricity, as saying: “Greece doesn’t have Covid guidelines for holiday homes.”

I beg to differ. On June 30, my UK-based lettings agents drew my attention to Greek government advice and health protocols regarding Covid-19, notably in respect of hotels and accommodation. My agent asked me to ensure that my Greek caretaker was fully aware of the situation.

During my brief stay in Greece (I left the UK on July 1 and was back by July 10, the earliest date I could return without having to be quarantined for two weeks) I did precisely that.

Stanley Johnson
Minehead, Somerset


Shake it off

SIR – In South West Tanganyika, we are in many respects long way behind the London (and Liverpool) School of Tropical Medicine and their excellent professors (Letters, July 26), yet we are way ahead of the UK in ditching handshakes. For months, encounters in the villages and local hospital have seen a nudging of elbows, a bright “Corona!” greeting and a chuckle.

Church services were never suspended here (instead, the president called on people of faith throughout the nation to pray) and the Peace is shared during Mass with a waving of hands in the air, rippling through the congregation – quite the most sanitary means of salutation.

Dr Adrian Murray
Milo, Ludewa, Tanzania


Better eating habits

SIR – I don’t think the Government’s plans for tackling obesity, such as encouraging GPs to prescribe cycling, will have much effect.

It’s all down to people’s eating habits. My husband and I eat mostly homemade, reasonably healthy meals, with fruit (and occasionally ice cream) for dessert. We rarely eat snacks and only have cakes as a treat. We are not super-slim and our waistlines have thickened a little with age, but neither of us has gained more than a couple of pounds in the past 20 years.

I don’t understand why some people wait until they are several stone overweight before taking action.

Barbara Smith

Source: Telegraph