DURING a week when we hear news reports that prisoners are to be given their own computers and TVs as well as telephones in their cells, how ironic that the Andover Advertiser runs an article on the poor condition of local accommodation for single soldiers (Edition January 11, ‘Barracks ‘not for animals’’).

This is due to the usual cuts in funding for maintenance of basic equipment to enable safe and comfortable living.

These men and women risk their lives for their country, many returning home with life-changing injuries and/or post-traumatic stress disorder.

Yet their housing needs are neglected, and faulty equipment in the barracks has led to a number of fires recently.

Soldiers also have great difficulties in receiving monies due to them from the army, and in benefits, when they leave the services and I can vouch for this as I have a close relative in this situation.

Is it not time this government got its priorities right, for it is a disgusting state of affairs when our military personnel have a lower standard of living than that of convicted criminals?

Surely prison should be a punishment and one of the components of this punishment should be to take away privileges and luxuries!

It goes without saying that many civilians too, including families and pensioners, struggle to afford the necessities of life, and probably feel they would be better off in prison than trying to eke out a living in the UK at this time.

Irene Williams, Heath Vale, Andover