Not so many flags

"During the World Cup, a forest of flags flew proudly from almost every shop, factory and car . . ." (Diary, 4 September). Those expecting to be overwhelmed by the power of nationalism generally have their expectations fulfilled. During the World Cup period, I made a point of counting, in various parts of London, what proportion of cars was displaying England flags. Nowhere was the figure higher than one in 20.

Ian Birchall
London N9

This article first appeared in the 11 September 2006 issue of the New Statesman, It must be Gordon, Gordon, Gordon