Grantham's former mayor calls for more Thatcher tourism

Margaret Thatcher
Image caption Margaret Thatcher was the longest serving prime minister of the 20th Century

A former mayor of Grantham has called for more to be done to promote the town's links with Margaret Thatcher.

Baroness Thatcher was born Margaret Hilda Roberts in Grantham on 13 October 1925 and is the subject of The Iron Lady, a new film starring Meryl Streep.

Councillor Ray Wooten said Mrs Thatcher deserved more recognition, even though she still divided opinion in the town.

He said "I think there should be some sort of trail leading to a statue of her in the centre of town".

'Strong woman'

Mr Wooten, who served as a police officer during the miners' strike in 1984, said: "Whatever your views of Margaret Thatcher, she was a strong woman and a strong leader."

He said the town has many great buildings connected with the family, including the former grammar school attended by Mrs Thatcher and the shop on North Parade owned by her father Alfred Roberts at the time of her birth.

Last year, Conservative MP for Grantham and Stamford Nick Boles called for a museum dedicated to her to be set up in the town.

But the town's existing museum, which housed a display of Margaret Thatcher memorabilia, closed when Lincolnshire County Council decided it was no longer viable in a series of spending cuts.

A charitable trust has now been set up to run the museum, which is expected to reopen in time for the Queen's Diamond Jubilee in June.

Items previously on display at the museum included a blue suit worn by Baroness Thatcher and one of the original Spitting Image puppets depicting her.

The Grantham Community Heritage Association said it had started a pledge campaign for people to support the museum and celebrate the town and its people.

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