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Tuesday October 1, 1974

Sick of the YP at the moment, which is far too busy for my liking. Am getting on quite well with the new girl called Eileen (Byram), who is quite a pleasant __, though I found myself working much harder when Mrs Beaumont was sitting at the other side of the table. The Old, or pehaps I should say, Young Witch thought she was Catherine the Great of Russia. Eileen's got far more intellect.

Ring Denny at about 11. We are both having a day off on Oct 4, which should prove amusing. It think I'll taker her the tent back which has been hanging around in one of our out-houses since the Grassington weekend.

Mum is in a rotten mood when I arrive home, and think she doesn't like the idea of working full-time. However, Dad says she had a nasty experience with the bank manager this morning, and this must be a contributing factor to Mama's moody, explosive temper.

If my calculations are correct, the Duchess of Gloucester should have given birth by now. She's not been seen in public since the end of April, and I thought the baby was due at the end of September.

On the subject of gorgeous women, of which the Duchess of Gloucester is one, I'm looking forward to seeing Sarah Jane at Wikis on Friday. Dave B won't let it drop about me taking her off him last week, but I can seriously say she was MINE after about ten minutes of chatting up. Bloody awful boring evening. Help Sue with her homework, then go leap into the bath, purely for the want of something better to do. By the way, saw Judith Rushworth at the bus stop this morning. She's at college after all, and seemed to be in a much better mood than when I last saw her. Dad says that Mrs Rawnsley's been walking around today dressed completely in black, and he suspects a family bereavement.


Monday September 30, 1974

Marita rings for a chat at 6.30. She needs cheering up. Evidently, MM goes to Sheffield tomorrow___________. Poor soul. ____________.She also informed me that Denny is down in the dumps, and is going out for her lunches with a regular escort. Nothing much else occurred in the conversation and it ended after about half an hour.

See TV all evening and nothing except the election is on. Michael Foot and William Whitelaw pulling each other to pieces, &c. However, Mr Whitelaw is a good chap, and I prefer him to Mr Heath, who is far too high minded to appreciate the problems facing Britain at the moment. Politics get me down, but Sir Alec Douglas-Home made a good point at the weekend when he said that politics may be dirty business, but the only alternative is dictatorship. It's a damn shame that poor Sir Alec didn't have longer at Number 10. I'm sure he was a better leader than Ted (Heath). But he got what all leaders get when they fail to win an election. Ted himself will receive a sharp kick in the pants if he fails to succeed on October 10. No doubt Mr & Mrs Whitelaw are planning to move into the Downing Street residence in later years.

See a good film called 'Otley' on BBC2. It's hillarious, dealing with spies, &c. Also see 'Emmerdale Farm' before coming to bed at 11.45.

Ugh, Mrs Ford, the wife of the US president, had one of her breasts removed in hospital at the weekend. The president probably won't stand for election in 1976 because of his wife's health. I expect it's cancer or something.


Sunday September 29, 1974

Up at 11.30 in the lounge. Chris is complaining that no one has made him any tea, and Jackie is moaning about the excrutiating cold. Lynn is still asleep.

Chris is the first to rise (though we did hear some clomping around upstairs which died down after about ten minutes). Surprised that no damage was done last night. Gradually everyone comes back to life & drifting into the lounge.

Andy marvels at me eating trifle before lunch. Trifle, in my opinion, always tastes better after being allowed to stand for 24 hours. I make cups of tea for everyone who wants it, including Mum and Dad who lay motionless in bed like corpses. Nevertheless, they keep muttering things like 'what a night' and 'who was the chap with the feather duster?', &c.

By lunchtime all guests have gone except Jackie. We all sit watching a Doris Day film which is quite revolting. Everyone is exceedingly thirsty and John takes Jackie, Lynn and me to the off licence where we buy four or five bottles of lemonade. Drain them all dry by 6pm.

Listen to the 'Top 20'. 'Kung Fu' is still number one. Don't go out this evening and have a long bath. John goes with Carol to Ilkley. Fed up of writing, so bye, bye, &c.


Saturday September 28, 1974

John's party. The social turn-out of the season, equalled only by Royal Ascot and Princess Margaret's monthly orgies at Kensington Palace. Everyone that meant anything came, and herein is the list:-
Lynn Rhodes
Susan Rhodes
Alison Dixon
Jackie Myers
Christine Dibb
dear Laura
Christine Whitethighs (Phyllis)
Carol Smith
Linda Smith
Denise Akroyd
Christopher Ratcliffe
Andy Graham
Peter Mather
Martyn Cole
David Baker
Keith Brown
Peter Nason, &c.

Jackie came at about 6.30 and we went to the Hare at 8. Chris was being his usual over-jovial self, and Denny looked stunning in a rarther plain, yet attractive Hartnell creation. Ray (Bond?) and Dave Baker came too, and we move on to the Commercial which is packed to the hilt like the Social Security office on pay day. See Keith, &c and remind him about the party. Home at 11 after Papa had purchased several pints of ale for me. Everyone arrives by 11.30 though Dave Lawson never actually turned up. Didn't drink much in excess, though Auntie Hilda's home brewed parsnip wine knocked the top off my sober self. Harry Monkman did his usual party piece. Alison and I went round at about 1am and poured water through his letter-box, which in the colder soberness of Sunday morning still seems very funny. My sense of humour is one of the mosr regal aspects of my character. After all, King Edward VII and King George VI both had this boy-like humour which remained with them until they end of their days, and so do I. Danced until 4.30 on Sunday morning. Curtains have fallen on the romance between Lynn and Ronnie, and I did keep getting a glimpse of her at the side of good old Dave Baker, who's always had an affectionate bond with her. I expected getting a bed but found Andy and Linda in mine when I drifted up at 4.30am. Ended up in the lounge sprawled between two chairs. Chris was on the floor in a sleeping bag, and Lynn and Jackie shared the settee. Most people went home, even Denny. Throughout the whole evening Mum and Dad were the ultimate in fun and kindness & it completely destroys the theory about generation gaps, &c. Hate parties coming to end, it's abominable.


Friday September 27, 1974

Carol and I are alone all day at the YP. She discloses to me that one of the new journalists, who seems to be a bit of a drip, is the eldest son and heir of Viscount Monckton of Brenchley. If I'd have known this last week I'd have doffed my cap or something when he approached me in the search for some things that had gone missing from his desk.

On the subject of the peerage, I see in the YP that the Duke of Roxburghe died yesterday after collapsing on his grouse moor. The new duke is a 19 year-old soldier who is in Cyprus at the moment. He is the youngest duke living at the moment. (I bet that piece of information gave everyone a tremendous thrill & rivetted you all to the diary, tongues hanging out in anticipation for more tales of an equally seductive character).

To the Hare and Hounds tonight. Carol and John are still deep in the depths of new romance, though I must say most of the passion seems to come from Carol, __________, as I discovered at one of our parties last November. Denny baby sits tonight and is not with us.

All go to Wikis where I accidentally stand on the toes of an attractive young lady while dancing, which results in my spending the remainder of the night with her. She's called Sarah Jane and lives in Otley and is a personal friend of Dave Baker's. Quite a pleasant diversion anyway. Come home quite alone in the rain at 2.30. Clad only in my trousers and shirt sleeves I was rarther soggy on my arrival at the Rhodes ancestral pile.


Thursday September 26, 1974

Nothing (of interest) at the YP. Go to Denny's with John and Chris at about 8.30 and go down to the local for a few drinks, coming back to 'The Grange' an hout later to see the programme 'Shoulder to Shoulder' dealing with the suffragettes and all the problems they had facing them before World War One. The prog. this week deals with Emily Davison who killed herself under the King's horse at the 1913 Derby. Leave dear Denny's residence at about midnight. Dog tired. Sleep immediately.