letter: Juries denied the wisdom of age

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Sir: Today I have - very reluctantly - put a tick against my name on the electoral registration form because, having reached the age of 70 in July, I am now no longer eligible for jury service.

The form is so worded that it seems to suggest that jury service is something that everyone wants to avoid. I was in fact looking forward very much to serving on a jury and was most disappointed when - the summons having arrived about 20 years ago - we were all sent home without even being sworn in when the accused decided to plead guilty.

Since then I have retired, and have been hoping that I would be called again. Unlike on the former occasion, when I was a very busy person running a single-handed architectural practice, I would not be inconvenienced at all.

Nobody should be obliged to do jury service if they are unfit or in a position when such service would be damaging to their business or family life, but nowadays, when so many retired people are still fit and intelligent, they should be given the chance to say "yes" or "no".

MARGARET WITHERS

Launceston,

Cornwall

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