John Ekins's comments about the loss of the Municipal Engineer struck a sombre warning note (NCE 26 September). The Institution of Municipal Engineers was merged with the Institution of Civil Engineers too many years ago, and the benefits of its training and teaching are lost.
Membership was by examination, interview and report. This put the job in context and made you aware of the powers you applied. You understood the administrative arrangements and the legal framework behind it.
Achievement of MIMunE was rewarded by progression through the salary scales. It opened the door to CEng and recognised that municipal work demanded its own brand of dedication and specialised knowledge.
All this sadly was not recognised. A Dip MunE qualification would have rewarded double membership and would have encouraged the tradition of knowledge in this area. As a result, the knowledge seems not to have been important enough to continue.
As one of the disappearing group, my training-underagreement has stood me in good stead throughout my career and I can only commend others to initiate similar.
Les Dalby, Chandlers Ford, Hampshire, les. dalby@hants. gov. uk