Tuesday 22nd March 1988

A busy day meeting people about my Little Paxton history project and getting the older ladies together at The Old Post Office. More death and recriminations in Northern Ireland and a late TUC agreement for bringing Ford Electronics to Dundee might be too late but a compromise has been agreed at Land Rover to end their 7 week strike

A busy day out and about meeting people, but it started a little later than these last few days, as I slept in a little. Still had plenty of time to shower, wash my hair and dress before breakfast. After my cereal, I spent a little time in my office opening the mail and writing out some paying-in slips for the children’s investment accounts and then it was time to visit Edie Smith. Edie is an old village resident that came to Little Paxton in 1917 at the age of 9 and has lived here ever since. Her name was originally Smith, she was ‘sort of’ adopted by Harry Richardson Smith of the Old Post Office and then married a Harold Smith later – 3 Smiths and never had to change her name! Poor old thing, she never gets out and so I picked up Ivy Bunnage and Vera Ruff and we all got together there. Learnt a good few things more as we chatted for a couple of hours before it was time to go, but at least we managed to persuade her to come and meet Ian and Wendy Thorpe this afternoon.

Monday 21st March 1988

‘First off the mark’ filing my election nomination and then canvassing the local newspapers after a pouring wet night making the river levels an issue. Tom King sets in motion an urgent review of Ulster funeral policing, Britain’s seamen’s leaders are balloting for a national strike BP have been fined £750,000 after three men were killed at its Grangemouth refinery

To bed at 11.00pm and awake by 5.30am, but a sound night’s sleep in between. Awake early enough to pester Di, before we got up as I needed my morning drink; still having my cold to cope with. It had been pouring with rain all night, teeming in fact, and the river rose strongly this morning, so that I had to send Daniel out to loosen his mooring ropes. Our older dinghy also floated off downstream, but Pete went after it and brought it back! I worked in my office this morning, preparing and copying leaflet delivery cards and then completing my new press release about being ‘First off the mark’ with my nomination form. I phoned Percy to try to persuade him to let me release it today and then spoke to Michael Pope, who agreed with me and I went ahead anyway. Dropped copies in by car to St Neots Weekly News and Trader, then drove to Huntingdon.

Sunday 20th March 1988

This sunny and warm day was spent getting my election campaign underway, completing the list of nominations I needed to be able to stand, and documenting my leaflet delivery walks. The news is of the deaths of British soldiers in Northern Ireland and an Israeli soldier as The US tried to get General Manuel Noriega, to resign

Awake and up early to chase up my morning tea. Drank it and showered early so that I could start my election leafleting plans before breakfast. Broke off for a nice fried meal (I still seem to be only 13st 2lbs at the moment, with expending all this mental energy). Carried on afterwards, until I went out in late morning to tend the ducks and doves. The weather was sunny and warm then and I canvassed for a neighbours vote as she chanced by! Checked the baby doves and rings and some are surviving OK and others not. Worked on to lunchtime and then after. I am laminating with a protective polythene film a copy of the route maps for each of my Little Paxton leaflet walks, with a copy of general and specific house-by-house instructions.

Saturday 19th March 1988

Combining visits to local political activists and picking up election ‘flag boards’ whilst taking the family to St Ives and then to lunch at the Little Paxton Little Chef and then planning leaflet delivery rounds this evening. More trouble in Ulster with the shooting of two British soldiers at an IRA funeral, the entire Leicester ambulance fleet of 50 vehicles totally destroyed by fire in their depot

Slept well enough, but awoke early again and came downstairs to initiate my own cup of tea. Stayed in my pyjamas for breakfast, reading the Investors Chronicle in the run up to it. Then I read this morning’s mail – full of Reliant letters etc, but no further Little Paxton feedback. Then my wash and shave, before deciding that I would take Di to St Ives after all. We called in on Percy Meyer on the way, who told me about new by-elections in Buckden District & County Wards, which he would probably stand in himself. This would mean he could not be my agent. Off to St Ives, where we parked, had coffee in Tooks and then I looked at the auction viewing, whilst Di took the girls to ‘Magpie’ and other places. I also bought some new screwdrivers and spanners, before getting more stationery as well. Back to St Neots, where I saw Michael Pope as Di went shopping. I discussed this question of Ward priorities and agreed a strategy.