Speeches, etc.

Margaret Thatcher

Remarks visiting Finchley

Document type: Speeches, interviews, etc.
Venue: Finchley
Source: Finchley Times, 24 May 1990
Editorial comments: 1400-1500 MT joined a party of Finchley primary school children on a visit to Colindale Hospital; 1515-1555 she presented a certificate to Betty Gibson (widow of a Conservative stalwart, Frank Gibson) at the Kinloss Synagogue; 1600-1655 she attended a Disablement Association of Barnet seminar at McDonalds UK headquarters; 1900-1930 she presented a 10,000 pound cheque to Friern Barnet Rotary Club as a contribution towards a worldwide Rotary appeal to help eliminate polio; 2005-2200 she attended a local Conservative branch "Antiques Evening" at a local school.
Importance ranking: Trivial
Word count: 510

Building for the future

All in all it was just another brick in the wall (as the Pink Floyd hit song goes) for children of Chalgrove Primary School as they learned about the building trade under the eye of Margaret Thatcher.

The children were shown how to lay bricks and watched the Prime Minister have a bash at it too.

Friday's tour around the site of a nurses' home now under construction at Colindale Hospital was part of a campaign by the Chartered Institute of Building to encourage more children to think about a future in the building industry.

Squeezed into a tiny office with 30 youngsters, representatives of the CIB and Colindale Hospital and a bank of photographers, Mrs T showed her familiar style of press management.

“I don't think we can get all the photographers in,” she said. “Why don't you do the photographs and go?”

The photographers done, Tom Carroll, regional director of Laing which is building the nurses' accommodation, talked to the children about the need for speed, ease and ‘buildability’ in the construction world.

Then it was time for Mick the Bricklayer—otherwise Michael Read of development company Hightower—to demonstrate the fine art of knitting bricks with mortar.

Mrs Thatcher proved she had not been elected on a brickie's ticket, but afterwards wooed the plastering lobby with a discussion of how long you should wait before touching a new plastered wall.

“I am a dab hand at emulsion-painting,” she admitted.

And then, without a thought to her afternoon's tight schedule, she surprised the geriatric ward with an impromptu visit, where she chatted to virtually every patient.

Frank 's legacy of love

A Grove of trees on the slopes of a mountain in the Promised Land is being planted as a memorial to the late Frank Gibson.

The event was marked in Finchley's Kinloss Synagogue on Friday by Finchley Friends of Israel, as a certificate was presented to Mrs Betty Gibson in the presence of Friends' president Margaret Thatcher, Israeli ambassador Yoav Biran and Roy Shutz, the new Mayor of Barnet.

“While Frank can no longer play an active part in supporting Israel, the grove will play an important part in the future of Israel,” said Mrs Gibson.

A close personal friend of Mr Gibson, Finchley MP Mrs Thatcher made time for the presentation in an afternoon of constituency visits.

She said his death had come as a shock to everyone because he had kept quiet about his illness.

“It was a great shock to us, and even more so for his family, because typically he had obscured to everyone else the seriousness of his condition.”

But she paid tribute to the enduring influence of the man.

Frank GibsonFrank built for the future, and he's still building for the future by the heritage he left.

“Every time we live up to that heritage we are living up to the standards he set.”