ALEX PERKINS, computer programmer: I've just read my first Noddy book. It was awful. The Policeman Plod syndrome is tyranny - do something wrong and you get whacked. The children were fascinated by it though. I wouldn't buy that kind of book. All our books are PC - but not PC Plod.
RAYMOND BRIGGS, writer and illustrator of children's books: It's nice to read books in original form, as long as you tell children they were written when people thought very differently. My latest book was tidied up - I had an obnoxious little rat of a bloke saying 'I can't stand foreigners' and then he listed them, frogs, wogs, krauts, eyeties and so on, and this was thought very off.
STEPHEN SPENDER, poet: Things should not be altered, because they belong to their time and a certain period. If there is an offensive reference to 'nigger' or something similar, there should be a footnote at the bottom, and perhaps an introduction putting it into its context.
MARGARET LALLY, bookseller: The fact behind a lot of this re-writing is simple: new, re-worked editions of established works make a great deal of money.
JOSEPHINE PULLEIN- THOMPSON, children's writer: I've written over 40 children's books and I find I have to up- date them from time to time. The use of words changes, and slang can begin to sound absolutely ridiculous. But I'm against sanitising children's books - after all, fat children like Billy Bunter exist. You can always give them a loveable character.
JONATHAN LACY, 4: I quite like Noddy, but my favourite is Thomas the Tank Engine. He's funny.
ALAN DAVIDSON, children's writer: There is far too much patronising of children already. How would you like a book of yours chopped around?
PENELOPE LIVELY, novelist: Good books don't worry about being correct. I certainly wouldn't read Enid Blyton to my children because the books are inadequate in plot, theme and characterisation.
JO DOUGLAS, consultant child psychologist: My daughter brought home a book from school about a little girl lured into a living in a cave with a strange man. She ended up looking after him, washing the floors etc. I complained to the school: children's books should reflect contemporary social trends, and not perpetuate out- dated stereotypes.
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