Battle of britain

Letters: Why is the problem of working-class white boys not considered worth solving?

Left-behind boys Sir: Christopher Snowdon’s perceptive and informative article (‘The lost boys’, 18 July) reflects perfectly my own experiences in trying to highlight the under-attainment of white working-class boys in higher education, particularly in chemistry, a frontline Stem subject. I was elected to the Inclusion and Diversity Committee of the Royal Society of Chemistry to investigate this matter. Despite strong acknowledgment of the under-representation of ‘white working-class males’, any positive action remains painfully slow. It is abundantly clear that while white working-class males are the largest group of disadvantaged young people in this country, their cause is the least fashionable and the problem not considered worth solving. Equally disturbingly, my

Letters: We must sing again

Growing pains Sir: James Forsyth (‘Rewiring the state’, 4 July) shocked this loyal Spectator reader with the following: ‘Even before Covid, this country was in a productivity crisis and it’s nigh-on impossible to improve productivity without government involvement. Increasing productivity requires improvements to be made to physical and digital infrastructure and to the skill base, and those need public investment.’ James clearly has not studied the sources of productivity growth (or lack of it). In the 50 years to 2008, the UK experienced around 2 per cent p.a. growth in real Gross Value Added per hour worked — which is what politicians generally mean when they talk about productivity. Since

Letters: Why Hugh Dowding deserves a statue

Police relations Sir: As a former Met Police officer, with a similar background to Kevin Hurley, I was surprised how much I disagreed with his article (‘Cop out’, 27 June). Central to this was the lack of emphasis he placed on the attitude of police officers. The emphasis on violent gang crime undoubtedly leads to a distortion in how young black men are perceived by the police, and this in turn can quickly lead to confrontation on the street. The attitude of young police officers is key to avoiding an escalating reaction between them and members of the public. Senior officers need to develop more holistic ways of addressing crime,

The caution that almost cost us the Battle of Britain

The Battle of Britain, which began 80 years ago this week, occupies a unique place in our island story. Its epic moral quality, representing the triumph of freedom over tyranny, continues to resonate to this day. The RAF’s victory marked a crucial turning point in the war; it was the first time the Nazi machine had suffered a defeat. If the Luftwaffe had gained the mastery of the skies over southern England in September 1940, the Germans might well have been able to launch a vast, seaborne invasion across the Channel. Beaten in the West, the Reich had to turn eastwards, to Russia, with disastrous consequences. What makes the tale