Having lost my own mother just over a year ago, following a steady deterioration due to dementia, my sympathy goes to the family of Margaret Thatcher.
During my life time, eight other former Prime Ministers have died – Churchill, Attlee, Eden, Macmillan, Douglas-Home, Wilson, Heath and Callaghan.
Only Churchill had a state funeral, and that was because he led the country through most of the Second World War.
Amongst many other great reforms, Attlee presided over the creation of the NHS, but he wasn’t feted in this way at his death. Wilson won four general elections (Thatcher won three), and his achievements included leading governments that introduced equal pay for women, reduced the voting age from 21 to 18, legalised homosexuality and created the Open University.
Further, he had the wisdom to leave office quietly when he discovered that his health was deteriorating.
I can see no justification for the quasi-state funeral for Thatcher, but clearly her supporters and imitators can see one.
I leave it to the reader of this letter to make their own mind up, but personally I would rather remember the likes of Harold Wilson (above) for his achievements and wisdom.