Dear Editor, I read with interest two of Paul Dale’s articles in the Birmingham Post (“Sir Albert put Tory coalition on notice” and “Iron Angle”, November 4). I have to ask is Mr Dale a journalist or an unofficial press officer the labour group within Birmingham City Council?

In his article “Sir Albert puts the Tory coalition on notice”, Paul Dale trips out what can only be a press release of desires should the time arrive when the electorate of Birmingham offers the labour group a chance to revisit the Birmingham corridors of power.

The only point within the article that is challenged by Paul Dale is that of the timeline which Sir Albert believes it will take to regain power.

Surely, good journalistic instinct challenges the detail rather than accepting at face value a press release or interview.

So when Sir Albert declares that “this is a clear indication to officers of the City Council”, I would contend that it is the electorate and not officers who should know the facts and, as Sir Albert and the Labour group have continually failed to produce an alternative budget for the electorate to view, why did the journalistic instinct not kick in with questions of how they have costed and would perform they’re reforms.

Similarly, one only has to look at Iron Angle and it would be comical if it wasn’t for Paul Dale taking himself and the column so seriously.

He regularly mocks the promotion of our great city by criticising the choice of phrases used by Councillor Mike Whitby. But, he conveniently forgets that from Joseph Chamberlain to present day, all our leaders have proudly puffed out their chests and promoted and supported our city of Birmingham.

Paul Dale shows even greater loss of memory in his criticism and mockery of starting the meetings of the Full City Council with prayers. All Lord Mayors have had the services of a chaplain should they wish to do so. I’m reminded that only a few years ago, Labour’s Councillor Mike Sharpe (Tyburn), when Lord Mayor regularly had a chaplain accompany him and lead prayers before council meetings. Did Paul Dale mock back then,? I don’t think so!

Paul Burke

Sutton Coldfield