2 MAY 1987, Page 20

The balloon goes up

Sir: Might I say how much I enjoyed Alexander Norman's article (`Tommies' Johnnies', 18 April) dealing with his survey on the preparations by the armed forces to combat the spread of Aids? However, we Other Ranks (ORs) are a conservative bunch and do not require our condoms to be made of anything but plain latex. Indeed, a condom in an exotic colour, unusually sized and with a ribbed tickler is likely to be used as a balloon at a regimen- tal party rather than as a serious means of contraception. I can only concur with Mr Norman when he wonders what a Labour Government might do if it came to power, perhaps offer servicemen a whoring grant to cover research?

24348709 Cpl Wingert M.J.

PMCC, 178 Port Regt RCT, Marchwood, Hampshire