Barking up the wrong tree for berk origins | Brief letters

Clive Myrie | Berk myth | Bristol protest | Codeword challenge | Pension increase

Your report (Clive Myrie to replace John Humphrys as Mastermind host, 22 March) pointedly notes that “Mastermind started in 1972 and has been presented exclusively by men”. Was the fact that Clive Myrie is its first BAME presenter not worth noting? I’m struggling to think of any similar male or female hosts of a major TV quiz show.
Derrick Cameron
Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire

• Colin Burke (Letters, 22 March) perpetuates the myth that the etymology of “berk” is derived from the Berkshire Hunt. My dad, a docker from Bermondsey, told me it was the Berkeley Hunt, the oldest pack in the country, that provided the root of the rhyming slang so casually bandied about these days.
Michael Horsham
Ham, London

• Did the organisers of the Bristol demonstration (Senior policing figures fear further violence after Bristol ‘kill the bill’ protest, 22 March) consider the possible provocative implications of calling it “kill the bill”? That’s a genuine question.
Tim Large
Reading, Berkshire

• For those looking to make Codeword more challenging (Letters, 21 March), may I recommend picking up a Codeword that your partner has partially solved incorrectly, and then trying to unpick the errors? Best not to berate one’s partner, of course.
Prof David Meldrum
Taynuilt, Argyll and Bute

• Approaching my 80th birthday, I have received an exciting letter from the DWP. My pension will go up by 25p a week! My problem is, do I splurge it all at once, or should I save it up for something special? Can Guardian readers advise?
Elizabeth Pearson
New Barnet, London


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