Greetings from St Margaret’s Hospice, Yeovil

Health-wise I’ve been up and down for the last few days, some days feeling much better than others but at least I’m sleeping through the night and seem to spend most of the day dozing in between visitors and the occasional black and white movie on Film 4. Martin and Smita have come down yet again for the weekend and I’m glad to say that Peta along with 3-month-old teddy have arrived today for the weekend. Leaving Bertie behind in Scotland to enjoy the weekend with his Daddy. However, they are all coming down together again next week, to which we are all looking forward.

Nothing seems to have rekindled my appetite but the food here at St Margaret’s is good enough for me to at least to have a bit of a nibble at it when it arrives.

When I was a student in Salisbury back in the early 70’s, I was for one year Chairman of the Salisbury Joint Colleges Rag Week. It was therefore a great pleasure when Pete Whiteman, one of my fellow committee members, decided to pop in on the off chance yesterday. I officiated at Peter’s first wedding in 1975 in the same church (St Thomas’, Salisbury) where we had been married only three weeks previously. So it was good to have stayed in touch all these years. Another chum who made a bit of a journey yesterday was Lyndon Ford who is used as a standby organist in so many RN churches, that he has earned himself the title of Fleet Organist! And someone whose visit is always welcomed, the Chaplain of St Anne’s, Portsmouth Dockyard, Fr Martin Poll with his usual mixture of dry wit, amusing anecdotes and up-to-date information is always a pleasure to listen to. But of course the cherry on top of the icing was the quick, sneaky visit from Teeny Hickman. My great hope for Teeny that she will be amongst the style-setters for black hats!

It was good this morning to have half an hour to catch up with Commodore Andy Wilmett, with whom I had served together in Gibraltar. Good pals from my curate days, Sarah and Aston Brandon, spent a lovely hour or so with me before lunch. Then after our usual hour of rest, my great school-day friend, Alaistair Wood visited for half an hour when we reminisced and chewed over old times.

Sunday will be a nice family day meanwhile many thanks again for all messages, cards and emails. If you wish to contact me do so through Fiona at