LETTER: Care with words in headlines

Your letters
Your letters

As a regular reader of this paper, I have come to expect a high standard of professional journalism for my 80 pence.

That expectation did not apply when I read last week’s two front page headlines of the Horsham edition (‘‘Fight for Horsham’’ and ‘Corbyn backs Gatwick’, WSCT, Nov 12).

The first headline, ‘Fight for Horsham’, is proclaimed by Cllr Peter Burgess (Con, Holbrook West), who strongly encourages local people - via their local councillor - to reject the Local Plan regarding Liberty’s North Horsham development.

This newspaper is perfectly entitled to make public the strong views held by Cllr Burgess, but not at the expense of excluding others who might have equally-strong opposing views - especially those councillors who will also be voting at HDC’s Extraordinary Meeting this evening.

As to the second headline, ‘Corbyn backs Gatwick’. This is a grossly inaccurate and misleading headline, and an all-too-familiar misrepresentation of what this Labour leader is actually quoted as saying.

The headline suggests Jeremy Corbyn gives his full backing to the monstrous runway option chosen by Global Infrastructure Partners-Gatwick Airport Limited (GIP-GAL). This is plain nonsense.

All of us - including headline-writers - have to be careful with our use of words. Why? Because words have an extraordinary power.

RICHARD W. SYMONDS

Ifield Street, Ifield Village

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