Thursday, October 20, 2011



"The Long Walk To Finchley"

Rory Kinnear

From Wikipedia:
Major Sir Denis Thatcher, 1st Baronet, MBE, TD (10 May 1915 – 26 June 2003) was a British businessman, and the husband of the former British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher. He was born in Lewisham, London, the elder child of a New Zealand-born British businessman, Thomas Herbert (Jack) Thatcher, and his wife (Lilian) Kathleen, née Bird. He is the most recent person outside the Royal Family to be awarded a hereditary title.

On 28 March 1942, Thatcher married Margaret Doris Kempson, (23 January 1918 – 8 June 1996), the daughter of Leonard Kempson, a businessman at St. Mary's Church, Monken Hadley. They had met at an officer's dance at Grosvenor House the year before.

Although initially very happy, Thatcher and his first wife never lived together. Their married life became confined to snatched weekends and irregular leaves as Thatcher was often abroad during the war. When Thatcher returned to England after being demobilised in 1946, his wife told him she had met someone else and wanted a divorce. Their childless marriage ended in the first weeks of 1948. Kempson married Sir (Alfred) Howard Whitby Hickman, 3rd Baronet (1920–1979) on 24 January the same year.

Thatcher was so traumatised by the event that he refused fully to talk about his first marriage or the separation, even to his daughter, as she states in her 1995 biography of him. Thatcher's two children found out about his first marriage only in February 1976 (by which time Margaret was leader of the Conservative Party) and only when the media revealed it.

In February 1949, while attending a Paint Trades Federation function in Dartford, he met Margaret Roberts, a chemist and newly-selected parliamentary candidate. They married on 13 December 1951, at Wesley's Chapel in City Road, London. That was because not only were the Roberts Methodists but also because as a divorced man, Thatcher could not at that time remarry in an Anglican church.

They later had twin children, Carol and Mark, who were born on 15 August 1953.


No comments: