Friday 30th June 1989

Meeting today with Daniel’s chemistry teacher, Mr Watson, about his future choice of subjects as he struggles against his advice and that of his housemaster, Mr Brophy, and myself to keep going. Sometime this afternoon working on sealing cracks in The Lady’s woodwork and pasting up scrapbook items before delivering more Village Hall fete programs and attending an interesting activist meeting for St Neots Democrats this evening

Today was the day that we were due to go to see Daniel’s chemistry teacher, Mr Watson, and so we were dressed early and I did my few chores before we went. Daniella had no school today; the teachers were having one of their seven training days necessary for the introduction of the new Kenneth Baker educational reforms. Della therefore came with us to Kimbolton and we arrived dead on 10am, to discuss Daniel’s chemistry performance. The advice to Daniel is now the same from all quarters: viz he is best advised to see his present subjects through to completion; general science subjects of maths physics and chemistry are preferred for computer science course entrance; going back a year gives a bad impression and is poor for career progress. We were telephoned later by his housemaster, Mr Brophy, who supported these views as well, but Daniel remains to be convinced it will make up his own mind in due course.

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Thursday 29th June 1989

A successful Little Paxton polling day which started with heavy rain and ended with John Grosvenor being elected. During the day I had been completing the garden chores in the absence of Pete and this evening came news that the rail strikes were going to be intensified. Irish Prime Minister, Charles Houghey, is forced to resign and the new coalition must be formed

Today started with heavy rain but ended up sunny and warm. I was slow for breakfast after being disturbed by the sound of water splashing down on my balcony from an overflowing and blocked drain pipe. I then had breakfast in my pyjamas and, after dressing, I sat in the conservatory for ages reading the morning mail. It included post for the District Council and, within it, details in draft of the District-wide Local Plan. I had to do all of the conservatory and livestock jobs today as Pete did not stay with the heavy rain making mowing impossible. In late morning, I took Diana and we voted in the village hall for John Grosvenor. I worked on the local plan and also my press cuttings this afternoon and then, after tea, Michael visited and we studied the plan together to compare notes on what our response should be. Later, I sold half of the allocation given to me of Village Hall fate programs before driving up to the Village Hall to watch the count for the parish council by-election it was very close with my candidate, John Grosvenor, beating Joan Ratcliffe by 87 votes to 79, a margin of only eight votes!

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Wednesday 28th June 1989

After the sunny start to the day there was rain later as I tussled with the problem of controlling my new dehumidifier and also joined Michael Pope to see Fiona Lockett who now seems unlikely to stand for us as a Democrat candidate. Acute transport congestion in London as a result of the second one-day rail and tube strike, organised by Jimmy Knapp, that leaves Thatcher furious and fugitives from China tell more of the massacres that took place.

A cooler day and one was accompanied by rain in the air later. It started out fine and sunny, however, as I checked the conservatory to see the dehumidifier was working well, if difficult to control. Then it was time to collect Michael Pope and go on to see Fiona Lockett of Priory Hill. We wanted her to stand as a Democrat for the Town Council Elections, but she remains reluctant. Whilst agreeing to think it over, I think that she will turn us down in due course. She is very busy, and Percy Meyer had offended her and husband in the old SDP days.

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Tuesday 27th June 1989

A more restful day archiving and watching cricket on TV before attending a Saint Neots Museum committee meeting until late this evening and then news of a possible European compromise on monetary union with Thatcher prepared to accept the first stage of the EMS as she faces yet more industrial unrest at home

I spent the day jointly reviewing a backlog of newspapers of May/June for cuttings and watching the last day of the second test cricket match on the TV. After the last pair of batsmen for England kept Australia at bay for 90 minutes; and then the England bowlers took four Australian wickets for 50-odd runs; the Aussies won the second test and now England were two down in the series. This evening, I attended Saint Neots Museum committee meeting and saw the designs of a team of Newcastle students for the project on the alternative sites of Shady Walk and the Riverside Park. The meeting went on quite late and I only got back at 10pm, when I had to feed and put away the ducks in the failing light. The news today is of a European compromise on monetary union with Thatcher prepared to accept the first stage of the EMS (after inflation is down from 8% to 5%). The Delors’s report was accepted as a suitable vehicle for progress and an intergovernmental conference to map out the way forward.

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