Further to the letter from Huw Davies, I agree that ‘Dear Sirs’ is probably an inappropriate generic salutation. In a previous career in banking, I was taught to address business letters ‘Dear Sirs and Mesdames’, and was instructed only to use ‘Dear Sirs’ (or indeed ‘Dear Mesdames’) if I was sure that all of the officers of the company, partners in the firm and so on, were of one gender.

Tim TalbotWebb, QualitySolicitorsTalbots, Dudley