Thatcher and Reagan together in better times

To Huntingdon to study Little Paxton History and then home via the riding school where Debbie rode well on Barbie as the government starts an anti AIDS publicity campaign after 284 sufferers have died in the UK of it. Controversies for Reagan in the US over Arms for Iranian hostages and here for Thatcher over the MI5 book affair and more effluent pollutes the Rhine as flooding affects Southern England and Wales but not here.

A better night and start to the day. Showered and dresses, noticing that my weight is staying stubbornly over 13st 10lbs, despite my diet, and means that I need more exercise. Updated yesterday’s journal and then settled down with the paper again until the post came, but nothing of much interest. Once the girls were ready, we left by car, but Di was a bit upset that I had decided to go to Huntingdon, rather than Bedford. It was a very cold day and, though becoming sunny later, it meant that she and Daniella (who had a cold) would have been better off inside the larger Bedford shops. Still, we had coffee at ‘The Chelsea’ cafe and then they set off for the library and I for the Record Office. I spent most of the day there, transcribing the card indexes on Lt. Paxton, The Standleys, the Gordons and the Huntlys photographs and then photocopying Little Paxton Enclosure Awards for inputting into my word processor. They were also grateful to copy the printed act of 1812, which I had secured from St John’s.

Met Di and Della for lunch in the Wimpy bar, then they took the car home, as I went back to finish off by looking at some documents on the Standleys. In late afternoon, the girls came back to collect me and then, after dropping Di and Della back at home, I took Debbie for her horse riding lesson and she did quite well on Barbie. Home to tea (which Debbie ate completely, as she had missed her ‘snack’ after school), after arranging for Debbie to have an hour’s horse riding instruction on Wednesday next at 5.00pm, to give her more of a chance to learn. This evening, I read the Enclosure Award in detail, whilst Daniel earnt himself £1 by typing in nearly three pages of the Act onto my computer. I find that St John’s College Little Paxton Manor consisted of its own lands, plus others in copyhold to Reynolds, Railey, and Standley, but it is not of such large acreage as some of the other manors, which have since been lost. I shall try to find these as well. To bed with Di, but some difficulty in sleeping when my mind is so active late into the evening. News today is of the Government funding a £20 million publicity campaign to educate the public in the dangers of AIDS. So far there have been 565 cases in Britain, of which 284 patients have died. The US controversy over arms to Iran goes on, with claim and counter-claim by Reagan’s aids as to who knew what and when. The local authorities and four of the six teachers unions have signed an agreement on teachers’ pay and conditions and now Kenneth Baker has to decide whether or not to accept the situation, or risk further industrial trouble by legislating against it. Thatcher is still resisting House of Commons pressure to make a statement on the MI5 book affair, but the pressure is mounting. Five men are convicted at the Old Bailey for their part in smuggling heroin worth £100 million through Heathrow from Pakistan to the United States. There has been another pollution leak into the Rhine, this time of more than a metric tonne of weed killer and the battle for compensation over the Swiss leak has only just started. There was severe flooding in southern England and Wales but, despite being quite coloured, the Great Ouse close to me is still comfortably within its banks.