People too keen to attack David

Longfield Road Todmorden

Firstly: a word of correction regarding my friend and fellow-townsman, ex-councillor David Chaytor.

He did not attempt to avoid prosecution via 'parliamentary privilege'. He and others argued unsuccessfully that the Bill of Rights required trial not by Crown Court but by the High Court of Parliament itself.

Secondly: are not former councillors Carpenter and Riley, and indeed your able headline-writer, a little over-keen to kick a man when he's down?

Of course David's lapse is a pity, born of 'high-life temptations' which other MPs exploited by more legal launderings.

Yet there's a bit in the Sermon on the Mount about the judgemental, and St Paul reminded the world that "there is none that is righteous; no, not one!"

Thirdly: ought we not to remember Dave's decade and a half of selfless devoted council work at town and Calderdale level, and countless acts of generosity that could bring him no personal advantage?

I mention just one, namely stewarding my 8-hour international music festival in Todmorden Town Hall on VE Monday 8 May 1995, when a huge public turnout threatened chaos!

Yes, Chaytor was a founder of TND (Todmorden CND) when "man's final blasphemy would have been to blow the world up"; and our support of Kinnock's 'non-nuclear defence initiative' of 1986 bore fruit in his 31.4% increase in the Labour vote in 1987 over 1983.

So, finally: in the words of one wiser than all of us, "Let him who is without sin cast the first stone."

Frank McManus

(Mayor of Todmorden 1994-95)