Features of a Formal Letter

Tutor no longer registered
Key Stage 3 English By: Tutor no longer registered
Subject: Key Stage 3 English
Last updated: 22/09/2008
Tags: advice (general), key stage 3 english

Features of a Formal Letter 

  • your address as the sender in the top right-hand corner;
  • the receiver’s name and address (in the case of formal letters) on the left-hand side;
  • the correct opening (Dear Sir/Madam, Dear Mr Smith, Dear Editor);
  • a suitable and precisely worded opening sentence. Avoid opening with ‘I am writing to you…’;
  • a number of well-developed paragraphs;
  • a firm summing up of the purpose of the letter;
  • avoidance of shortened forms (e.g. I’m, don’t, won’t, etc.);
  • use of appropriate vocabulary;
  • suitable and appropriate signing off (e.g. ‘Yours faithfully’ – very formal with ‘Dear Sir’, ‘Yours sincerely’ – less formal with ‘Dear Mr Pit').

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