SIR - I refer to C Barltrop's letter published on September 20 and once again I find myself defending the RSPCA Worcester branch against an ill-informed member of the public.

C Barltrop claims that a friend who was a member of an RSPCA Worcestershire branch resigned because a high proportion of branch funds was directed by RSPCA HQ to be used for political work. All branch members are entitled to a copy of the annual report and accounts from which they can clearly see that money donated is used entirely for the benefit and welfare of local animals.

The only exception to this is that each year £1,000 from each branch is put into a branch regional fund which can be called upon by any branch within the region for specific animal welfare projects where extra funds are needed.

He goes on about volunteers at an RSPCA charity shop being in fear of expressing their feelings about handing out anti-hunt literature. Staff at our two branch shops are not given intructions to hand out literature. Furthermore, I can assure you that every one of them has expressed their condemnation of hunting with dogs. They are, after all, volunteers and nobody in their right mind gives their services to help an organisation with whose aims they do not agree.

C Barltrop should channel his time and effort into more worthwhile activities then publicly conveying gossip from friends.

PAMELA BOOKER, Honorary Branch Secretary, RSPCA, Worcester