“If the present isn’t to your taste you could … give it to someone else” (Hate that jumper? Here’s what to do with unwanted Christmas presents, 30 December). This was a favourite, and very annoying, habit of my over-economical, Scottish mother, who diligently recycled gifts even if she did like them herself. The practice is still known in our house as “Shuffle Katy”.
Kirsten Cubitt Thorley
• The answer to Timothy Kirkhope’s key questions about the House of Lords (Letters, 1 January) can be found in Gilbert and Sullivan’s Iolanthe, where Lord Mountararat tells us, “The House of Peers, throughout the war, did nothing in particular, and did it very well.”
• So, apart from the Turner prize in Liverpool, there’s nothing else worth seeing in the whole of the north of England in January (The anti-hibernation culture guide: something to enjoy for every day in January, 31 December)? Perhaps the Arts Council was right.
Moulton, North Yorkshire
• Many thanks for confining five of your eight suggested walks to southern England (‘Gold mist lingers over frozen marshes’: eight great UK winter walks, 31 December). That will help keep it peaceful here in Wales.