In your piece on the National Lottery’s birthday celebrations (MW November 4), you write: “causes from the Royal Opera House to Eton College have reaped massive rewards… Jowell believes a hostile media has mistakenly portrayed elite groups gaining at the expense of the public.”
Eton College has never had a lottery grant.
It has been reported that Eton’s rowing lake benefited from a grant. In fact, Dorney Lake is funded wholly by Eton, costing the college about &£10m net. The lake has become a national asset.
More often, it has been reported that Eton received a lottery grant for its athletics centre. This is not the case.
The Thames Valley Athletics Centre did receive a lottery grant. The TVAC is not Eton: it is a regional athletics facility which needed support from the two boroughs that wanted it, which it got; land, which Eton gave to it; and money, which it got from the boroughs, the lottery and some from Eton. Eton’s own use of the centre is less than ten per cent. It is ironic that Eton’s participation in this partnership with the local community to produce a wonderful regional facility is translated repeatedly as “Eton gets a lottery grant.”
Bursar and clerk