Monday 7 October 2013

Lady Trumpington

You may well have caught a glimpse of Jean Barker, Baroness Trumpington, on the recent Channel 4 programme Fabulous Fashionistas. I thought all the women featured were brilliant examples of how we should be viewing older women in a positive light- celebrating them for who they are rather than the media message that you become invisible unless you can stay looking young. I have no particular issue with women wanting surgery etc [live and let live I say] but for those of us who are happy to grow into senior years disgracefully and plough our own furrow shove off!

By coincidence I am currently reading The Secret Life of Bletchly Park by Sinclair McKay. It is not my usual choice of reading matter but I am finding the subject really fascinating and who should pop up....yes you've guessed it Baroness T. She was recruited for the naval intelligence operation because of her fluency in German. One of her antics is described by the Hon Sarah Baring

"...She was always up for some merry larks, and one night shift, we didn't have very much to do....we said 'Jean, get in the laundry basket now it's empty and we'll give you a ride down to the the loos' And so she got in and of course, we lost her because she was quite heavy, darling Jean, and she went straight down this long corridor into the gents' loo. The embarrassment. Though I think it must been much more embarrassing for the gentlemen!"

From this photo taken in 2011 when Lord King of Bridgewater was being rude about her age in the House of Lords BT has obviously lost none of her spirit! I hope to goodness that I'm just like her later on!!!


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