Let the words speak for themselves | Brief letters | Life and style

Give yeast to provide bubbles in beer (Letters, 13 April)? That means reduced alcohol content in the brew, a balance restored circa 1794 by the head brewer, Joseph Crabtree, of the Gordon & Hume Brewery in Edinburgh’s Grassmarket, who discovered that adding additional fermentable sugars suppressed oxidation to gas and retained alcohol content (the Crabtree Effect). However, this increases nutrient consumption and increases costs: hence the recourse to gas infusion!
Iain Mowbray
Keeper of the Purse, The Crabtree Foundation, UCL

Correcting the claim that “no woman was trusted to read the news in the UK until Angela Rippon in 1975” (Freedom of speech, G2, 9 April), James Curran (Letters, 10 April) tells us that Barbara Mandell read the midday news on ITV in 1955 but “was fired as a regular newsreader after a short time”. Margaret Squires (Letters, 12 April) writes that “Nan Winton read the news throughout the 1960s”, but in fact she began in June 1960 and was removed from the role in March 1961. Preceding all these was Sheila Borrett who, on 21 August 1933, read the BBC 6 o’clock radio news bulletin. Unfortunately she was sacked two months later for reasons that were never made public.
Professor Peter Ayton
City, University of London

Please could you confiscate your subeditor’s yellow highlighter? Twice recently it has been used to point up the salient points in a piece by Suzanne Moore (G2). Sweet old-fashioned thing that I am, I would rather read the whole article and make my own judgment.
Lindy Hardcastle
Groby, Leicestershire

So pesto is now a staple food in the UK according to your report (14 April). We practically live on it in the Highlands these days, usually on our polenta and halloumi butties – two of our other staple (or more correctly, basic) foodstuffs.
David Mack
Tain, Ross and Cromarty

First two swallows sighted flying over garden this afternoon. Two weeks later than last year.
Valerie Adamson
Peldon, Essex

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