30 SEPTEMBER 2000, Page 32

From Stephen Pound, Labour MP for Ealing North Sir: Petronella

Wyatt's article 'Pole posi- tion' has caused great offence to many of my constituents.

She is quite entitled to her architectural views, but to state that Poland was parti- tioned because the Poles were lazy is utterly inexcusable. Poland was partitioned in the 18th century because of her rapacious neigh- bours: Prussia, Russia and Austria-Hungary.

The patriotism and national passion of the Poles survived a century not just of par- tition but of being wholly subsumed, and is evidenced by their vital contribution to the Allied war effort and the flowering of mod- ern Poland since the chains of communism were broken.

Stephen Pound

House of Commons, London SW1