Southampton City Council loves to justify high salaries by making some sort of comparison with the private sector. That works both ways.

Currently, outside the council bubble economy, the private sector is feeling the full force of the harsh winds of austerity. Pay is being frozen, jobs are being lost and cutbacks are being made.

It is hard to believe that in the current climate a six-figure sum is necessary to attract somebody motivated to work as a simple council clerk.

It would be illuminating to see how the salaries are arrived at, apart from it being some sort of going rate agreed between council employees themselves.

TRACEY GREEN, Southampton.