A normal retirement age of 55, as advocated by Alastair McDougall (Personal view, THES, August 21), would not be acceptable to the Inland Revenue and so make it difficult to remain within funding guidelines. (The IR would also object to his idea of re-employment of members who have supposedly retired.) It is also misleading to say most premature retirements owing to ill health are attributable to stress. Only 164 out of 1,866 retirements for the year to March 31 1997 were due to ill health, of which one-third (ie about 3 per cent of the total) were due to work-related stress.
Stewart M. Neil Chief pensions manager Universities Superannuation Scheme