Thursday 11th December 1986

A full day’s writing and editing my Little Paxton Stone Age, Bronze Age and Iron Age sections on a cold, wet and breezy day with Debbie and Daniel otherwise distracted as Sellafield is given one year to solve its safety and leakage record or close, the first satellite TV franchise has been awarded to the large BSB consortium, the Education Bill had passed through the Commons after a 23- hour debate ensured a whole following day’s business was lost and an even more draconian censorship regime has been introduced to South Africa

A poor night, mind still active, and disturbed from a deep sleep near dawn by a dream that wrongly warned me that I had to get up urgently to go to the toilet! Read a little while from yesterday’s weekly papers and then Diana showed no mercy and turfed me out of my bed. A dark morning, with clouds overcast and no sun, the darkness highlighting our Christmas balcony light decorations, which shine out until the time switches turn them off at 9.00am. Showered, shaved and dressed and late down to breakfast, eating with only Daniella for company, which is unusual. Then I sat with the days papers for a while, until making a start to a long day’s work in the office. I was feeling a bit cold and sorry for myself and so I lit the log fire in my office, which sustained me throughout the day. The task was to write and type in my Prehistoric chapter on Little Paxton.

Wednesday 10th December 1986

Receiving HRO permissions for publishing Little Paxton photos as I start writing up my Stone Age chapter and then watching Debbie canter and jump on Barbie at the riding school and nearly fall whilst Daniel reports some good exam results and others worthy of improvement. Norman Tebbit is in the US trying to discredit the Labour Party Nuclear Disarmament proposal as the CIA Director denies all knowledge of the Iranian arms payments to the Contra in Nicaragua and then great UK embarrassment as Sir Robert has to admit in the Australian court case that the UK were aware of the MI5 disclosures 3 month and not 6 weeks beforehand that weakens their case. Three RAF tornados are lost in accidents at great expense but at least the pilots eject and their lives are saved

A better night’s sleep, no longer intrigued by the nature of further Little Paxton archaeological finds, but this time merely daunted by the task of writing up an accurate, non-technical, account of them for my history book. Received, at last, this morning the written confirmation from Huntingdon Record Office that they have ordered 13 prints for me and that the vast majority may be published at a cost of 50p per photo, which seems very reasonable. Quickly showered and dressed in a white shirt, but old trousers, for a day at home and then, after reading the paper, settled down into my office for a session of further reading. Now that I understand the information, I have to gather it together and write it up. No sign of Di returning from her shopping trip to Tesco’s in Cambridge and so I tidied up my desk, waited until 1.00pm and then made myself a salad lunch and ate it. I then started my Stone Age section for the book and was at least started when I had to break off at 4.00pm for an early tea with Debbie. It was time to go horse riding and I got her to Offord on time and she had an hour’s lesson on Barbie.

Tuesday 9th December 1986

To Cambridge after a restless night and a couple more hours in the Cambridge Collection tracing archaeological records of rich Anglo-Saxon and Romano-British farms as Diana met and went shopping with Norma and home in time for her to receive her friends at The Hayling View. Two White House officials today refuse to answer questions on the Iran/Nicaraguan scandal and The Rev Ian Paisley heckles Thatcher in the European Parliament which adds to her embarrassment on the MI5 security crisis with retired agent Peter Wright now speaking to the press

 

A restless night, wondering about the content of further Cambridge Antiquarian Society papers on Little Paxton. They had been referred to in other articles that I had been reading last night and I had not noticed before. Eventually to sleep, as the wind blew and the temperature dropped and then awoke to my morning tea and to resume reading my articles on Stone Age man in Little Paxton. Soon had to break off for my morning shower and shave and this time I remembered to wash my hair. Breakfast and then a little while reading the papers and sorting my things out for the day’s study. A little day dreaming, as I waited for Joan to arrive and then a phone call to Vinters to make arrangements to give them a cheque for the balance of the Linton Lordships purchase price.

Monday 8th December 1986

To Huntingdon on a rainy day, researching local Little Paxton history in the reference library and then record office referencing the Sidney Inskip-Ladds books, auction details of The Grove and an aerial picture of Paxton Park both just after the war. US officials testify about what they knew concerning the Iran Arms deal, the UK continue to squirm over MI5 issues and try to overturn the teachers settlement but may fail in the Lords but the French Government back down on their educational reforms

Later to bed and, being cold, took a while to get to sleep. Once asleep, was equally reluctant to wake up and turned over and snoozed again after my morning tea, until Di stripped off the bed sheets for the wash. Showered and shaved, forgetting to wash my hair, which I shall have to leave until tomorrow. Breakfast and then the morning paper, briefly, before spending a quick half hour in the office, when it was then time to leave for Huntingdon with Diana and Della. Parked and had coffee at the Chelsea Coffee House, whilst I finished reading the various pamphlets and booklets I had received this morning from Family History Societies. Then Di did some shopping, whilst I went to the Reference Library to do some more studying. I was interested in a large shelf unit of Ladds books and then the sections dealing with the Palaeolithic age and archaeological finds. Managed to copy a large amount of information to back up my intended section on Little Paxton in these times.