LETTER : How to spend lottery money

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The Independent Online
From Mr Owen Bywater

Sir: I am sickened by the chorus of bitterness and complaint against the Royal Opera House's award from the National Lottery. Britain leads the world in few things but the arts is one, and the artistic standards at the Royal Opera House are generally outstanding.

In my experience, from holiday visits, it has consistently been the finest opera and ballet company in the world. The theatre has hardly been touched since it was built 140 years ago, so let's celebrate their achievements and allow them to get on with creating a fitting opera house for the 21st century, in order that the management can then concentrate on the vital tasks of getting prices down and encouraging access.

I never pay more than pounds 7 for a ticket, because I simply can't afford more. I have enjoyed many exceptional performances of opera and dance, albeit on a bench seat and with a slightly restricted view. Rather than carping, those who are moaning should actually try a performance, at whatever price they can afford. They might just be pleasantly surprised.

Yours faithfully,

Owen Bywater



21 July