People have short memories. The 6,000-year-old earth interpretation of Genesis was brought out of its slumber in the 1960s.
James Ussher's dating, though an interesting piece of maths in the 1600s, had faded from the scene by the 1800s.
I suspect that many fear to allow an ancient earth lest it open the door to Darwinism (it doesn't), or, with more reason, raise the question of death before the Fall.
A letter is not the ideal place to answer these issues in full, but I leave your readers with two questions: 1. Was Adam created mortal or immortal? 2. How could Adam be expected to understand "Thou shalt surely die" if he had never seen anything dead?
rev philip foster
Hemingford Abbots, Cambridgeshire