Peter Hoskin

Cameron and Clegg pay tribute to their elders

As you’ve no doubt deduced from the cover image on the left-hand side of this page, the latest Spectator is out today — and it’s a soaraway double issue for Easter. By way of peddling it to CoffeeHousers (buy it here, etc.), I thought I’d mention one article among many. It’s a celebratory list of some of the country’s “most inspiring and influential over-80s,” and it includes tributes to them from some rather notable under-80-year-olds. So we have Matt Ridley on David Attenborough, Alex Salmond on Sean Connery, Ian Rankin on P.D James, and plenty more besides.

Anyway, there are two entries that CoffeeHousers might care to see in particular, so I’ve pasted them below: David Cameron on Margaret Thatcher, and Nick Clegg on Shirley Williams. Here they are:

Margaret Thatcher
by David Cameron

As each year passes, Lady Thatcher’s achievements appear, if possible, even greater. Abroad, she helped lead the West to victory against the Soviet Union. One of my formative memories is seeing the pictures of her visit to Gdansk. The sight of thousands of workers cheering that slight figure inspired me with the potential of politics. And at home, by getting the country to live within its means and rolling back the tide of state ownership, she gave Britain back its self-belief.

She had the courage to challenge established orthodoxies, and the confidence to do so in a slow, clever way. Now 85, she not only took the right decisions for our country, but put Britain back on its feet.

Shirley Williams
by Nick Clegg

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