Letter: Dancing with dogma

IT COMES as no surprise that in his latest column (County Times, January 12), that councillor Philip Circus should offer up such uncritical praise in favour of Margaret Thatcher.

True, she was a quite remarkable politician and Prime Minister. Like her or loathe her, she did break the mould of British politics – firstly by becoming the first woman to lead the Tory Party – the daughter of a small provincial grocer in a party of male-dominated public school chaps. And secondly by becoming our first woman Prime Minister.

I have yet to see the controversial biopic ‘The Iron Lady’ but if early box office takings are an indication of Mrs Thatcher’s popularity nationally, Philip Circus’ adulation should be confined to London and the Home Counties.

At the time of writing, takings for the film in London’s West End amount to £350,982; Greater London - £546,663 and Southern counties - £179,283.

Compare these takings with the North of England – Yorkshire £108,139, Tyne Tees - £47,407 and Border Counties – just £11,072.

While I am not suggesting that these figures provide an accurate picture of Mrs Thatcher’s popularity throughout the country, they do indicate that she was not flavour of the month among the northern mining and industrial communities.

Her aggressive confrontation with striking miners did undoubtedly cause a great deal of misery for many hard-working families. And she politicised the police in the process.

Her emphasis upon the individual rather than society created an atmosphere of greed which still permeates politics to this day and has produced a generation whose god is consumerism – spend, spend, spend!

ROBERT B. WORLEY

Ayshe Court Drive, Horsham