On behalf of RTÉ and its staff we object strongly to the article by Mark Hilliard on page three last week: "RTÉ denies it prevented staff from attending star's funeral". The article represented a serious misrepresentation of a reasonable and sensible advisory which RTÉ had circulated to its staff on the occasion of Gerry Ryan's funeral. As such it did a clear disservice to RTÉ and its staff, and to your own readers.

RTÉ was attentive throughout the week of Gerry Ryan's funeral to the needs of the Ryan family, and to the natural wish of his friends and colleagues in RTÉ to offer due respect to their late colleague. It was clear, as the funeral day approached, that attendance inside the very small church would be possible only by prior arrangement and that there might be difficulties around the Clontarf location in terms of crowds, traffic and access. RTÉ's putting in place a live picture and sound link to the funeral, in its main radio studio, was therefore a prudent and decent arrangement provided on site for staff as an alternative to attending in Clontarf. It is difficult to imagine any reasonable person finding fault with this.

The Sunday Tribune nevertheless offered a pointedly negative view of this workplace facility by suggesting that RTÉ may have "prevented staff from attending" the funeral, and by couching this via a denial from ourselves. There was no identifiable basis for any such suggestion. The denial by RTÉ, cited in the piece, was solely in response to the reporter's own assertion, on contacting the RTÉ press office on Friday 7 May, that RTÉ had sought to "ban" (his term) staff from going to Ryan's funeral. This was wholly untrue and unfair.

The Sunday Tribune provides substantive reporting and analysis from some of the country's best journalists and writers. As such, it has demonstrated a commitment to standards. RTÉ and its staff are entitled to fairness and accuracy within those standards.

Kevin Dawson,

Head of Corporate Communications, RTÉ;

Mary Curtin,

Trade Union Group, RTÉ