Speeches, etc.

Margaret Thatcher

Remarks visiting Finchley (Libya)

Document type: Speeches, interviews, etc.
Venue: Finchley
Source: (1) Finchley Times, 24 April 1986 (2) Finchley Press, 24 April 1986
Journalist: (1) Anna Franklin, Finchley Times, reporting (2) Hilary Lewis, Finchley Press, reporting
Editorial comments: MT began her constituency visit at the Accounting Information and Development Service; timing uncertain; 1515-1615 she visited the British Printing Society Exhibition at the Hendon Hall Hotel; later she spoke (on Libya) at a tea party for the North London Branch of Conservative Friends of Israel.
Importance ranking: Major
Word count: 1013
Themes: Autobiographical comments, Executive, Foreign policy (Middle East), Foreign policy (USA), Terrorism
(1) Finchley Times, 24 April 1986:

Pledge to help small firms

The Government is “very glad” to back the accounting system which has been developed for small business by the Accounting Information Development Service, said Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher on Friday.

She was speaking during a visit to the company's new head office at Elscot House, Arcadia Avenue, Finchley.

“The Government is very keen on doing everything it possibly can to assist the development of new business—this is where the new jobs are going to come from,” said Mrs Thatcher.

New technology meant that large companies were going to be able to double their production with the same workforce so the employment of the future lay in the development of new small businesses and new services of the kind offered by AIDS.

The Government had set up training schemes to help young people start up in small businesses and launch new projects.

And research showed time and time again that there was a shortage of management skills, possibly because so many decisions had been taken away from management, continued Mrs Thatcher.

“Now these are being given back and it is time to learn to use them and time to get back to the habit of enterprise,” she added.

Learning management skills meant increasing financial management skills because it was no good waiting until the end of the year to find out whether a business was making or losing money.

The AIDS system of monthly accounting would be of tremendous help to small and medium sized businesses.

Because inspiration, superb designs, a constant flow of creative ideas could still come to nothing without good financial management.

There were many small businesses starting up and the future depended upon their success. In turn their success depended on sound financial management.

Mrs Thatcher had been shown round the AIDS head office where she saw the accounting system in all the different process stages.

And she had heard from managing director Mike Salinger that the company was now successfully franchising its system.

She met and chatted to the staff at the Finchley head office as well as being introduced to some of the franchisees who came from as far afield as Scotland, Newcastle and Brighton.

Mr Salinger 's outline of the projected expansion of the franchise programme clearly impressed her and she was delighted with the company's achievements to date. [end p1]

Maggie's Libyan agony

Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher spoke on Friday about her agonising decision to allow the use of British bases for the U.S. Libyan bombing raid.

At a visit to the Conservative Friends of Israel at Avenue House in her finchley constituency, the Premier was warmly applauded as she spoke about the Americans' anti-terrorist action.

Thanking the group's chairman, Eddie Molyneux, for his support, Mrs Thatcher said: “It is a great comfort in what has been a difficult ten days.

“The easy decisions never come anywhere near me. The background has been terrorism for a very, very long time.”

She talked of how the Americans had suffered from terrorism and the need to stand firm against terrorists.

“If we give in the the threat of the bully,” she said, “the terrorist gradually saps the will of a free society.”

Mrs Thatcher—who wore a smart black suit, ruffle-neck blouse and elegant court shoes—backed up her decision to allow the use of the bases.

She said: “Yes we did agonise, yes we did ask are you sure they are all targets connected with terrorism? It would have been much easier to run away. I think that I would take the same decision again.

“Terrorism has to be fought not only with words, it has to be fought in a way to defeat it.”

She drew special applause when she said: “America is most generous in defending liberty and freedom the world over and I think she is entitled to help.”

After her speech Dudley MP and national chairman for the Friends Dr John Blackburn moved a vote of thanks to the Prime Minister.

Mrs Thatcher had tea and a chat with the gathering of about 50 members of the Friends.

Later this summer she'll become the first British Prime Minister in history to visit Israel while in office.

Friends' treasurer Graham Hirschfield said: “This is Mrs Thatcher's first visit here and we're pleased that she should be here with so many problems at the moment.” [end p2]

(2) Finchley Press, 24 April 1986:

PM praised for stand on Libya

The Prime Minister was praised for her “courageous stand” over Libya when she visited her Finchley constituency on Friday.

She was the chief guest at a tea party held by Finchley Conservatives Friends of Israel, at Avenue House.

In welcoming Mrs Thatcher Eddie Molyneaux chairman of the North London Area Council of the Conservative Friends of Israel, congratulated her for the “forthright and courageous stand” she had taken.

Mrs Thatcher described her “acutely difficult” week dealing with the Libyan crisis.

“We are all lovers of freedom, we believe in the rule of law and we reject force if we possibly can. It is inherent in a free society that we do not resort to force if we can help it. Terrorists play on this fact,” she said.

“We are all reluctant to resort to force, but we were asked against a background of mounting terrorism and the failure of other action to deal with the problem,” she added.

She said she had agonised over the decision and had asked the United States if all the targets were connected with terrorism.

“I can only think it was the right decision, much as we dislike force,” she said. “It would have been much easier to run away and say no, no, no, we will have nothing to do with it.

“At that particular time I felt the action was right, and I must tell you that I think those of us closely involved in taking the decision, a small group, would again take the same decision today. Terrorism has to be fought not only with words but in a way that will defeat it,” she declared.