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Unlovely description?

July 25, 2011

Special report: Murdoch affair spotlights UK’s dirty detectives

LONDON (Reuters) – In a small, semi-detached house overlooking a park in the unlovely south London suburb of Croydon, Jorge Salgado-Reyes sits at a glass-topped desk in his living room plying his trade as a private eye.

Croydon is a huge borough of 350,000 people covering a vast area that spans the boundary between suburban south London and the rural countryside of the Surrey Downs. Much of the landmass is green belt, and despite having a small area in the centre of the town that is dominated by large office blocks the rest of Croydon could at worst be described as ‘average’, but in many parts genuinely beautiful.

To use an offhand pejoritive like ‘unlovely’ in such a prominent way without any justification seems uncalled for. It adds nothing to the story and merely reinforces a lazy and unwarranted media stereotype.

I’ll leave it to your editorial judgment whether to leave this description in place, but I would hope that you might reconsider…

John B.

We don’t seem to be the first ones to attach the word unlovely to Croydon. I find numerous similar media references going back for years.

Having said that, I’m not sure we should be in the business of deciding which places are attractive and which are not, and unlovely is too general a description to offer much useful information to our readers: GBU Editor

John Gladden (L) rides on his World war II Sherman tank past the High Court February 4th prior to appeal. John is appealing to have the ban lifted which prevents him from attaching his stuffed Blue Marlin fish to the roof of his home in Croydon, south London. REUTERS/Kieran Doherty

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