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19 April 2021
Shirley Williams was IT for us: kind, clever, unpretentious, hard-working, her heart in the right place politically, oh she was our ideal. This week on the Post: Shirley and her background – why she was christened Shirley, her mother, her uncle and her godmother. This photograph accompanies the Financial Times obituary which has the extraordinary detail that 'after leaving university, she was hired by the FT 'partly on the basis that, as a woman, she was cheap. She enjoyed reporting on markets, but was prevented from writing editorials by an editor who believed that role should be men-only.' This was in the late 1950s... The FT called her 'high-minded' which somehow isn't entirely a compliment (it has overtones of smug) but she was indeed gloriously idealistic and uncompromising and the greatest sadness looking back on her exemplary life is that she never became prime minister.
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