Wednesday 21st September 1988

I was preparing for my forthcoming Little Paxton Friendship club talk on the village history and ensuring that the senior Little Paxton residents are invited and welcomed. Working with the District Solicitor on Southoe parish matters and then attending an evening meeting of the parish council with the Rev Peter Lewis and getting their agreement to support the SOS planning appeal whilst Diana takes the children to the Kimbolton statute fair. The IRA Gibraltar inquest confirms the army shoot to kill policy, Thatcher is alienating European colleagues by resisting integration and an emergency is declared in the Armenian region of Nagorno-Karabakh – actor Roy Kinnear dies in a riding accident and we turn off the swimming pool boiler as the swimming season ends

A day of meeting people and achieving little to tackle my backlog of paperwork after going through the mail and morning paper and then embarking on a whole series of phone calls. First area of work was my forthcoming Little Paxton local history talk and I called all of my old friends; Mrs Ruff, Mrs Bunnage, Mrs Davies and Mr Hall to ask them if they wanted to come along to see the slideshow of old photographs and hear what I had to say. I also checked with the secretary of Little Paxton Friendship Club and she confirmed that they would be welcome. By lunchtime, had just about found my feet again but then there were more people telephoned me on Ward queries and I received a call from the District Solicitor with information for Southoe Parish and I then passed it on. Soon I took the car and went over to Huntingdon to pick up a facsimile copy of section 137 of the 1972 Local Government Act that was needed for Southoe and also collected my mail from the council and a copy of the Hunts Post. A busy evening then followed, as Diana went back and forward to Kimbolton three times ferrying the children and taking them eventually to the Statute Fair.

Thursday 20th September 1988

Working on my papers, accounts and making calls and hearing that work will start on my conservatory next Monday. The afternoon shopping in Cambridge and St Neots and then this afternoon practising with my slides for my forthcoming Little Paxton history talks. Disappointment when Peter Wilmer withdraws from Council candidature and a poor party meeting this evening over Percy’s efforts. 66 more deaths in Rangoon as the civil unrest at the Burma coup continues and Emperor Hirohito of Japan is gravely ill after 62 years in office

The nights are no longer sufficient to let me catch up on my needed sleep. Awoke before 7am and was showering when I was called for breakfast of boiled egg. Some post and the morning paper to read which took until 9:30am and I worked on some accounts and phone calls to chase up a few outstanding matters. Work is now due to commence on my conservatory next Monday which is a surprise and so I have to order the liner of my pond which is on three weeks delivery. Soon time for lunch and then I went shopping this afternoon in Cambridge and St Neots. I managed to get my slides for the forthcoming history talks and a new battery for the security alarm system, which was badly needed. Once home again, I set up the slide projector and sorted the slides out in the correct order for my talks and they looked very good.

Monday 19th September 1988

Back to District Council matters today; racing over to Pathfinder House to deliver council papers, meeting up with Peter Wilmer about his forthcoming County Council campaign and meeting Parish clerks and a Parish Chairman on Ward issues. At home, liaising with Pete about my Games Lawn top-dressing, and working hard. More trouble in Burma as demonstrators refused to accept the military coup, Israel launches its first satellite and Dr David Owen ends his SDP conference with uncharacteristic words of unity

Slept well and awoke to my morning tea in good time for breakfast with the family. Di was off shopping this morning as I first read the paper and morning mail and then settled down to write three letters to the District Council on constituency matters. I ‘touched base’ with Pete who spent a full session today mixing top dressing and applying it to the games lawn and we are making progress. Soon lunch was upon me and then I quickly copied my council letters, raced over to Pathfinder House to deliver them, and then went to see Peter Wilmer to help plan is campaign to successfully fight the West Hunts County Ward. Along but fruitful session which made me late home to tea. This evening, I dropped off letter copies and had meetings with the Southoe and Little Paxton Parish Clerks, the Southoe Chairman and Shirley White, my deliverer in Southoe.

Sunday 18th September 1988

A change of routine for me this Sunday morning as I spent my time outside valeting the range Rover and then wiring up the mooring poles ready for this winter’s floods; all this so that I could take a break from working in my office. All the family by bicycle to the swings on the playing field, but even then I was correcting dog walkers breaking the rules. The TGWU backs Kinnock and Hattersley for the Labour leadership, military coups in Burma and Haiti and the worst hurricane in history is now reported as taking 550 missing in Mexico but the postal service is gradually returning to normal.

Di had to lay in this morning, so I got up to make the morning drinks. Della joined us and then we took a drink to Debbie but Daniel was away with his friend Gary for the night. We enjoyed our fried breakfast and then I spent the entire morning vacuuming, washing and waxing the Range Rover until it looked really good. In fact, I continued after lunch a little while to finish it off as I was determined to stay away from my office until tomorrow for a break. Later, I wired up the mooring poles ready for this winter’s floods. Steven Hicks has taken his boat out of the water and back home. It was a fine and sunny day today and the girls enjoyed the last chance to go swimming before the pool cover goes back on.