Tim Harford Columnist

In these polarised times one truth can be relied upon to unite the British commentariat: Christmas letters are ghastly. Writing in Country Life magazine, Kit Hesketh-Harvey advised being “alert enough to shake the card out directly over the recycling bin”.

The late Simon Hoggart collected the most execrable family newsletters he could harvest from readers of The Guardian and published them for the world’s amusement. Punctuation pundit Lynne Truss composed “revenge” letters, sending up the vanity and vacuity of it all...

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