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Editor: F Lennier. BA (hons) (Mrs)

1 April

To Tilebury's Harbenger

2 March (by hand)

Dear editoress,

I thought you had ignored my letter for the first edition about the young people out late at night in the park with some rather unsuitable clothes and that no-one was interested. I wondered if it was just me who thought that standards were slipping a bit and that we might be able to sort things out without the need for any unpleasantness with police officers and so forth.

Sometimes I wonder if I am getting old. I keep wondering if I am becoming too much like my mum.

But I saw last month that someone had read the letter and the nice lady with the nice home-made signs who was demonstrating against the BBC seemed to agree with me. So I thought I would write again to say that they are still there most nights and, in particular, fridays.

Now it is getting warmer and lighter they stay longer in the evenings. I haven't seen them do anything except smoke and sometimes play music but it seems rather unsuitable for our village and maybe unsavoury. I wish the man with the long hair would put his shirt on. Just looking at him makes me feel cold. But he seems to be the sort who does some manual labour or perhaps goes to a gymnasium and maybe he has good circulation.

I would just say that I do like the BBC and don't mind them filming here. I didn't join the march or sign the petition (I didn't want my name to be first on the list and no-one else seemed to have signed the one in the Post Office). I am in favour of art and I quite like dramas.


[unsigned]I still do not want to give my name as I am a private person.

The Harbinger Newsletter

4 March, (by hand)

Dear Sir,

Oh come on! What is going on here? The Green Party? And who on earth is Thelda Thornt? I have never come across a local resident with that name. It sounds Swedish. I am aware that they have a number of different views and more advance special interest groups on the continent.

However, I would like to remind you of the nature and constitution of a village newsletter. Such a circular is a public resource not for party political purposes. Your trust is therefore not to be abused for the furtherance of each fool's personal obsessions.

Please - in the name of liberty and balance, matters you profess to express - the oxygen of publicity should be denied to such lunatics (and other lunatics with their own special pleading). Especially when they are too miserly to print their own flyers and decide to push their agenda for free through the Harbinger. You have been hoodwinked!

But that is not why I write. I would like to raise again the concern I expressed in the February edition regarding the fundamental inaccuracy of the "History" section.

It appears that my confidence that some basic interrogation of the proposed copy from yourself would expose the flaws, misconstructions and misrepresentations in these articles (thence preventing their being published, pending further research) was too optimistic.

I gape to be forced into making such widely known points but, as I am left no option, please note:

  • Sylvia Spencer was a South African Boer from Grahamstown who 'turned her coat' to pass military secrets to the British. She was not 'very heroic.'
  • The restoration play of Bridget Taddock still exists. It is in the museum of the British Library. It is never performed nowdays because it involves satanic rites, nudity and various other things I will not detail here.
  • Meg "finecheeks" Paddock the highwaywoman actually led a gang of up to four cutpurses.

I once again request your attention to such mangled recapitulations of history.

Yours faithfully

Jacqueline Fernandez-Hernon

The Editor, Tilebury 'Harbinger'

27 March (by electronic mail)

Dear Madam,

I have previously written to you three times. You have taken no notice other than to address me in abusive terms in your editorial. The practically unhinged rant in which you felt fit to indulge yourself on the subject of editorial censorship did you no credit and leaves you and, unfortunately, by extension the Village paper, ridiculous.

I have been in discussion with the admirable author of the Special Correspondent articles and we have decided to work together to take that column in a new direction so our perspective is heard. I consequently do not intend to write further letters to you.

As my neice continues to ignore my notices (presumably too busy being stood up by filmstars) and you fail to induce her to publish them in the correct place viz the Events Column, and as I have no other means of getting the activities of village integration and charitable purposes committee into the paper, please note below:

  1. On every Thursday from 10.30-11.30am fundraising coffee mornings in the village hall.
  2. On 17 April at 6.30pm - slide show and talk from George Prestovic of the Free Russia Democratic International Society of London. Freedom, democracy and the European Refugee in the twenty-first century. Raffle and cake-sale.
  3. 24 April at 4pm. Knitting circle in the church. Still creating tea cozies for Pakistan.

Perhaps this letter shall be a test of your self-appointed role as angel of free speech. Please publish.

Yours faithfully

Doreen Davies

(Chairperson of the village integration and charitable purposes committee)

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