The Iron Lady's Funeral


A roar of boos rose from a large host of spectators just as the Iron Lady’s coffin bumbled past them. It’s fair to say that Margret Thatcher had ruffled a few feathers from her time as a prime minister in the eighties. Her legacy had divided the crowd, and everyone wanted their opinion to be heard.

Her achievements of being the first female prime minister and the longest serving in the 20th century were recognitions that caused for such a grand event. A big occasion like this hasn’t been organised for anyone since the Queen mother’s death in 2002. Thousands of people were packed on the pavements in Fleet Street. Police and army were scattered behind the barriers and around the outskirts in a silent surveillance. Military forces marched in front and behind the carriage containing her coffin.

While the journey to Saint Pauls was a safe one, it was surely not a quiet one. Although it was not officially a state funeral, it cost ten million to produce which had clearly angered the public further. The crowd were chanting “Waste of Money” while a man with a speakerphone shouted obscenities. It was mayhem as different groups of strangers argued their views in the street and people were holding signs of protest with statements like “Tory Scum”. It was clear that people had not come to pay respect and mourners were somehow lost amongst the mob. A number of protested had organised to turn their backs on the procession and they stayed true to their word.

“It shouldn’t be allowed. 10 million pounds is too much when they are making cuts.” said one of the protesters, Julie Davis. “It was a tough time when she was in power. I had a real struggle in that time and I don’t think it should be celebrated. That’s why I have turned my back to show I will not stand for it.”

“I just came to make sure she was really dead,” said another protester Peter Bines, 67.

But not everyone shared Peter and Julie’s view. Business owner Dereck Maidment was arguing with the protesters around him. He said, “I wouldn’t be where I am in my career without her. I owe her a lot so I think it’s fair (to spend 10 million). At the end of the day she’s an old lady that has died and some people should show more respect.”

Through the mass of chaotic and wild audience, there were a few quieter viewers that seemed to want to see what all the fuss was about. Many young people who weren’t old enough to have lived through the Thatcher era had even turned up to become part of this day that will go down in History. Though strong political views were definitely aired, the funeral procession went off without a hitch in celebration of lady who divided the nation.

 

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