11.11.2009

Brown"s eyesight to blame for letter?

Brown"s eyesight to blame for letter?

By Alexa Kaczka

Gordon Brown has apologised for spelling the name of a soldier killed in Afghanistan wrong in a condolence letter sent to his mother – but it may be his eyesight that is to blame.

Speaking at his monthly press conference, the prime minister said that he "understands" the pain felt by Jacqui Janes, who branded Mr Brown"s condolence note to her as an "insult".

He blamed his handwriting for misspelling her surname as "James" and apologised for any mistakes that had been made.

"I also said to anybody whom I have written to, if my writing is difficult to read, I apologise for that," he said.

But the prime minister"s eyesight may be to blame for the mistakes. He lost the sight in his left eye after a rugby accident when he was a teenager and has recently been diagnosed with a torn retina in his right eye.

Writing in her blog, visually impaired journalist Sue Arnold sympathised with Mr Brown saying that his misspelt and incomplete words occurred not because he is careless but "because he can"t see well enough".

by Martin Burns


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