Sunday, November 18, 2007

Visiting Aunt Margaret

No politics today, other than reading the newspaper political commentaries this morning in the car. No campaigning either. David drove myself and Dad to Teesdale in southern Co Durham to visit his 94 year old sister Margaret. Dad is 17 years younger than Margaret. They first met only 4 years ago. My family has a rich and interesting history and at some point I will tell all about it! But that is for another day.

We met up at the home of my cousin Steven and his wife Stephanie. His brother Tim was there as well. Their mother Primrose is no longer with us. She would be 99 if she was still alive. Primrose married a Dutchman in 1935 and moved to Holland, surviving the Nazi occupation and moving back to the UK after the war. Tim's wife Kate, who was also there this afternoon, is herself the daughter of a German Jew who escaped to Britain in 1938 when the Sudetenland was handed over to Hitler from Czechoslovakia, after the Munich Crisis. (This was a subject I covered in detail in my PhD thesis.)

Margaret gave me a trunk made for Henry Wallace, my great grandfather. We think it was made in the 1870s. Henry was the first County Councillor for Whickham, back in the 1890s. I now represent the area on Gateshead Council.

David dropped me off at Darlington station afterwards so I could pick up the train to London. I am now at the flat. David headed home, with the trunk, which will take pride of place somewhere in our front room.

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Chris Abbott said...

Teesdale is in Yorkshire Jonathon.

Jonathan Wallace said...

Hi Chris and Glynis

Historically yes, administratively no!