THERESA May's Honours List was depressingly predictable in seeking to award honours to her political colleagues and those she allegedly admires. Whilst taking into account that our former Prime Minister has as much imagination as a caravan site and a legendary lack of political nuance and awareness, it was still disappointing to note that the arrogant and convicted domestic abuser, Geoffrey Boycott, was included in her list (“I don't give a toss: Defiant Boycott bats off criticism over knighthood”, The Herald, September 11).

Mrs May is not by any means the first Prime Minister to reward colleagues or acolytes. Premiers from Lloyd George onwards in the last century have all been criticised for lavishing honours in a partisan or myopic fashion. The system is patently open to abuse and should not be regarded in isolation but as part of a ridiculous and archaic order of patronage that perpetuates the idea that titles matter. The British empire is long dead and the absurd honours system ought to have died with it.

Geoffrey Boycott's knighthood again demonstrates that awards are not based on common decency or indeed the virtues of those receiving them, but on personal whims and on cronyism. British democracy is experiencing its worst crisis in living memory but from this chaos a new order could be achieved that radically alters how we perceive inclusion, equality and fairness in our society. The role of the House of Lords and the antediluvian honours system must be re-assessed in this context for a democracy that seriously views itself as fit for the 21st century.

Owen Kelly, Stirling.

THE vitriol being directed at Geoffrey Boycott by women's groups on his award of a knighthood shows a characteristic which is less than attractive.

Twenty-five years ago Boycott was found guilty in a French court of abuse of a girlfriend. This was subsequent to an attempt to get him to pay her £1 million to drop the case. He appealed but in France you are guilty until you prove yourself innocent and this was made impossible as Boycott did not speak French, he was not allowed to speak on his own behalf and there were no witnesses to the alleged assault. In a later unrelated court case his former girlfriend was described by the judge as not being honest.

In these circumstances there is surely reasonable doubt about the accuracy of the conviction and Boycott has never altered his stance that he was not guilty. Parallel this with the Irish rugby player, Paddy Jackson, who in spite of being found not guilty has been constantly hounded by women's rights groups who are happy to ignore the facts of the case.

There is something deeply unpleasant about groups who are willing to further their political aims at the expense of an individual irrespective of the fact that they may be innocent.

No one condones violence against women and indeed men but this does not excuse persecution of the innocent.

David Stubley, Prestwick.