TO come straight to the point, the chief executive and chairman of the Shropshire Community NHS Trust have a point in their concerns about the Ludlow bed-push collection.

Political correctness has gone mad but hairy men in drag dressed as nurses, some in miniskirts and tights is toe curling.

Like some of the old television programmes and films – On the Buses, The Benny Hill Show, the Carry On films, the Miss World pageant, to name but four – things that once made us laugh or smile now elicit a cringe or a frown.

However, intent is surely the most important element in all of this and I do not believe that anyone seriously thinks that the people who collected for Ludlow Hospital had any intention of either sexualising or demeaning nurses or health service workers.

The sensible course of action that remains open would be to accept the donation in the spirit in which it was given but point out the concerns and request that less ‘yesterday’ ways of raising money are used in the future.

It is to be hoped that an accommodation can be reached in order that much-needed money raised through good intentions can be spent on Ludlow Hospital whilst recognising that the NHS chiefs had a point.

A stand-off that leaves both sides digging their heels in brings no credit to either and denies the hospital to opportunity to buy equipment that can improve patient care and help the nurses that provide that care.

It is time to put patients before dignity. There is no need either for the NHS to continue to refuse the money or for the fundraisers to insist they will not modify future fund raising.

Of course, some forms of behaviour are totally unacceptable but this said the PC revolution can leave many people, in particular men of a certain age which includes me, confused and almost frightened to say or do anything.

People like me were bought up to believe that if a woman was standing and there were no seats or a train or a bus you stood up and offered the lady your seat. If you were going through a door into a building or a lift females were invited to go in first.

Even that if going for a drink or for dinner the man offered to pay.

There was even, believe it or not, a time when it was possible to compliment a woman upon her appearance without risking a charge of sexual harassment.

Now sadly, and I know many women who secretly agree, behaving like a gentleman is just too dangerous.

For the most part the PC fetish is little more than unsettling and mildly frustrating but there are circumstances in which it can be more serious.

No one should be afraid to report or comment upon wrong-doing because they fear being labelled as racist or non-PC.

In an extreme example of this, it is shameful that Labour MP Sarah Champion, should have been effectively forced to step down from the Shadow Cabinet after expressing concerns about the attitude of some Asian men involved in the sexploitation of young white girls in the north of England.