To the publisher of ‘What’s on TV’,

Would you please explain why, each week, my telly magazine is full of flyers and bogus bingo cards? I want to buy a guide to the week’s televisual delights, not a JML reject catalogue full of heated slippers and gnomes that glow in the dark.

I pluck ‘What’s on TV’ from the shelf and a plethora of pamphlets fall around my feet: Amazing Capsule for Partial Deafness; Getting a leg up just got a step easier with a Hippo Step Stool; Mop smarter, not harder with the Spin-Dry Mop System. Don’t you think there are enough adverts inside the pages without throwing in a handful of loose extras? Just this week, there were seventeen pages of advertisements. Seventeen! I can’t imagine why anyone would want to buy a fleece decorated with a wolf’s face but, if they did, why would a TV guide be their first port of call?

OK, OK, maybe I’m being harsh; I guess that you need the money that comes in from flogging fish pies and supersoft comfort trainers and life insurance vouched for by Michael Parkinson (I guess he’s missing that chat show salary). I’ll even concede that the regular income from the busty lovelies on page 86 probably comes in handy when discussing cash flow with the bank manager, but why, oh why, do you further sully your handily-cheap publication with disposable, fly-away tat?

Don’t you people know that we’re in the middle of a global climate crisis caused by increased carbon dioxide in the air? Do you know what creates these emissions? Factories and machines like the ones used to print the junk mail stowed away in your magazine! We’re all supposed to know and practice our three Rs these days, but how can I Reduce, Reuse and Recycle your shiny, foil-covered interlopers? It’s not like I can send them in to the Blue Peter appeal.

All those trees, wasted! Think of all the wonderful things that they could have been turned into: the next novel in the Twilight saga, perhaps, or entry forms for this year’s X Factor. What lost opportunities!

How many trees have been felled so that you can increase your advertising revenue selling plastic birdbaths and singing fish?

I suggest you ask yourself that very question before stuffing next week’s edition full of adverts for casual loafers and pull-on trousers.

Yours faithfully,

Lynne Thomas.