Monday 31st March 1986

Easter Monday - A sad day of tragedies with the shocking Hampton Court fire and the crash of a Mexican airliner the worst of them, but riots in Ulster over march disputes and the abolition of the GLC and other metropolitan authorities will probably have longer term implications. We were at St Ives for the bank holiday antiques fair having gone by car and not by boat for once.

Di had slept in the box room last night, as she did not feel very well and she brought me a drink this morning to wake me up. I didn’t feel quite so cold this morning, even though I could not light the central heating boiler last night, as the wind had abated somewhat. Down to a breakfast of cereal and then I got Di to cut my hair – it had been too long for some time – and then I also washed my hair as I showered. Dressed and then to help Di finish off tidying up and get the children to do the same. No Joan today, of course, and we then fed the ducks and doves (10 eggs today!) and set off for St Ives Bank Holiday market and antique fair. All this weekend we had been sad that we did not take The Lady down to St Ives, but Easter is so early this year and the weather so bad it was unthinkable.

Sunday 30th March 1986

Easter Sunday Late rising on a cold and windy day in a spell that has discouraged birds from nesting yet and that today has kept Daniel and his friends inside for much of the time as the Reagan rejects the Soviet call for an arms summit, religious leaders call for peace, James Cagney dies, aged 86, and SOGAT settle with Maxwell in Scotland to avoid the closure of Scottish

Couldn’t get warm on a chilly morning. A cold westerly wind and temperatures that seemed close to freezing. Stayed in bed to read the papers, update yesterday’s journal and then Daniel’s friends started arriving, one after the other. Last night we were supposed to put the clocks an hour forward for the start of British Summer Time, but I had yet to change from GMT. Strange to think that in previous years we were often on the river at Easter and, when Di was carrying Daniel, she sat out regularly in the warm spring sunshine. After February it will be some time before the ground, sea and air warm up.

Saturday 29th March 1986

A morning trip to Hinchinbrooke antique fair (on a cold, occasionally very wet, day that was challenging for the few boats out) to see some fine tables as Diana seems to be better and working on our en suite but she needs the help with a fretful Della and the children later as I spend time with the family. The Russians call for a summit arms control meeting with the US and Cambridge wins the boat race for once.

Awake on another cold and windy day, but thankful for the two hours of heating we get each morning. Sat in bed writing yesterday’s notes and was grateful for a boiled egg and toast breakfast being brought up for me. Then the FT and pleased to see Kode struggling up 5 to 140p. I also get the Annual Report & Accounts in the post and do not care for the details – I shall sell our holdings if they reach anywhere near 200p in the new tax year. At last showered, washed and dressed and time with Della and our ‘elevenses.’ I am trying to get her to have a single biscuit sitting down, instead of the chain of them she has whilst wandering around at the moment. I then drove over to Hinchinbrooke House (dropping off Daniel at Gary’s on the way) and spent an enjoyable couple of hours looking round a superb antique fair.

Friday 28th March 1986

Good Friday – Family shopping trip to Bedford with Debbie and Daniel spending their savings before a lunch in Debenhams as the Sikhs continue their murderous Nationalist struggle for the Khalistan Movement in the Punjab and Reagan wins Senate support for arming the Contras but still needs to convince Congress

 Awake after a good night on another cool and windy morning. Had a breakfast of cereal and milk today because of my sore throat. I seem to have picked up another chest infection, but I do not think this one is serious. To the bathroom for a wash down this morning to save time, then dressed and out to the ducks and doves early. Only five eggs and I pledge to wait until 10.00am another day. Then to sit and rest, whilst Di got the car out and the kids in it, as I still feel a bit weak.