WHAT a pickle Eric Pickles has got himself into over Christianity.

For his claims that the UK is a Christian nation are surely flawed as the Tories punish the poor and reward the rich.

Sharing and caring are not in the Tory politicians’ handbook, which has more in common with Wall Street’s greed than Christian creed.

As we near Easter, what a shame that this formerly pagan festival, along with all the others the church stole for its own ends, can’t return to a celebration of and respect for nature and the marking of the four seasons, which, through symbolism and monuments such as Stonehenge, led to scientific calculation and understanding of the natural world.

Mr Pickles appears paranoid about atheists, but ignores concerns about the established church and its unelected and unaccountable influence within Parliament. I don’t wish for overtly reactionary Christians such as Mr Pickles using parliamentary privilege for their personal religious ends.

In political balance I also find bizarre Hugh Bayley’s preference for charity and benefits over social pragmatism in our so-called Christian country.

Hugh welcomes zero VAT on air ambulances, yet no life-enhancing organisation should have to rely on charity.

Tom Scaife, Manor Drive, York.