I REFER to the letter from Peter Holman (October 15) and well remember the amalgamation of the two counties in 1974 and the concern over the removal of certain pictures.

I imagine that if he were to make enquiries he would find that these were portraits of past chairmen of Herefordshire County Council and that they were displayed alongside those of Worcestershire County Council in the new county headquarters in Worcester.

It is possible that, if not still displayed, they are now in store, possibly back in Hereford at the Art Gallery.

The explanation for the post code for Bishops Frome will be that WR represents the nearest post town (Worcester) and helps to speed postal deliveries.

I think he may find that the same applies throughout the country, and I am sure he would agree that it makes sense.

It was a popular belief under the amalgamation that the county of Herefordshire disappeared, but I remember noting the Welcome to Herefordshire sign on the road from Worcester to Hereford during the whole period from 1974 to 1998.

It was the administrative counties (not the geographical ones) that were conjoined and I felt it a great shame that the people of Herefordshire did not recognise the real advantages that accrued, not just from the economies of scale, as a result of the reform. Certainly the county library service, for which I worked at the time, took great strides forward and it is pertinent to note that the only two purpose built libraries were built during this period.

I am afraid it is a truism that the library service went downhill some years after Herefordshire Council was re-established, partly due to a Conservative government which had steadily reduced its grants to local government and partly due to a Conservative council which saw the library service as an easy target for cutting expenditure.

F A Milligan