Postcards from the Thatcher years


These were blu-tacked to my bedroom wall when I was a student – found them yesterday languishing at the bottom of a plastic bag unopened since 1984.  I am a terrible hoarder! Don’t know who the artist was or whether these are in any way collectable – your views or info appreciated.

Keith Joseph - Thatcher minister for education
Keith Joseph – Thatcher minister for education
We all thought a nuclear winter was round the corner
We all thought a nuclear winter was round the corner
Reagan often portrayed as a cowboy with adoring Thatcher
Reagan often portrayed as a cowboy with adoring Thatcher

Thatcher first year in power


Here’s an interesting front cover from a Sunday Times colour supplement in 1980 “celebrating” the first year of Thatcher in power. Me or my sister defaced Maggie’s face with a beard and moustache at the time! Around her head – framed like Joan of Arc – are winged angels representing (from left to right) Geoffrey Howe, Lord Carrington, Willie Whitelaw, Keith Joseph and Jim Prior. Down below is Michael Heseltine looking a little wistful. At that stage, Thatcher was embattled and rumours were flying that Heseltine had his eye on Number 10.

High youth unemployment – we knew it too…back in 1980


Young people are on the dole all over Europe once more – 50% of young people in Spain without jobs. It’s all a horrible echo of the 1979-81 economic downturn in the UK during the first term of the Margaret Thatcher government. I was at university in Liverpool from 1981 to 1984 and jobs were things that very lucky people had in that city. Disused factories and warehouses were everywhere.

So bad was the situation that a bleak humour arose – evidenced by this front cover of the satirical magazine Private Eye in 1980. Here we have arch-Thatcherite Keith Joseph saying it’s not so bad – he’s spotted at least one job.

Keith Joseph explains