Former prime minister Margaret Thatcher dies

File photo dated 01/11/2010 of Baroness Thatcher waving to wellwishers from her Belgravia home. Baroness Thatcher died this morning following a stroke, her spokesman Lord Bell said. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday April 8, 2013. See PA story DEATH Thatcher. Photo credit should read: John Stillwell/PA Wire
File photo dated 01/11/2010 of Baroness Thatcher waving to wellwishers from her Belgravia home. Baroness Thatcher died this morning following a stroke, her spokesman Lord Bell said. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday April 8, 2013. See PA story DEATH Thatcher. Photo credit should read: John Stillwell/PA Wire

THE former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher, who served from 1979 to 1990, has died peacefully today (Monday) after suffering a stroke.

Baroness Thatcher, who was the country’s only female prime minister, will perhaps be remembered by many people in the Mansfield and Ashfield area for her government’s part in closing the mines.

The bitter dispute began after decision to close Cortonwood pit in South Yorkshire led to Arthur Scargill’s NUM waging a campaign against the programme of pit closures.

In Nottinghamshire, many miners refused to back the strike without a ballot and they regularly braved a gauntlet of abuse from pickets who had travelled from across the country.

But one former Shirebrook miner, who contacted the Chad today and who didn’t want to leave his name, said that many miners felt betrayed by Margaret Thatcher’s instructions to keep working.

He said: “She conned all the Nottinghamshire miners to keep working and then she shut them (the pits) anyway.”

Meanwhile, speaking after soon the announcement, Conservative MP Mark Spencer, who represents Sherwood, said: “Whatever people may have thought of her, Mrs Thatcher was a very important Prime Minister who came into power when the country was in turmoil and turned it around.

“She had real steel at her core and I think people will look back and recognise her as one of the great leaders up there with Churchill and Robert Peel.”

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