Glenda Wood on her encounter with Margaret Thatcher

Did you ever make up politicians, like Mrs Thatcher?

Oh, God! Yes. Do you know, we never, ever got tips. Which is the nature of the game, isn’t it? But I went to Blackpool, and it was the year after the Brighton bombing – you wouldn’t believe the security to get in there! I was met outside by two policemen, taken up the drive, and I had to go through like an airport thing, I went in there, then I went into the reception, two more policemen, who sat with me, and then a girl came over, a woman policemen, and I said to her, “Are any of these policemen armed?” And she patted herself, and she had a gun down her thing. And then I said, “I’ll have to go to the toilet,” and she said, “I’ll come with you.” I said, “No, I know where it is, I’ve been here before! You don’t need to.” And she said, “I’ve got to come with you.” And she stood outside the toilet door while I was having a pee, and she banged her foot on the door all the time just to let me know she wasn’t going anywhere! And then somebody came over to me and said, “We’re ready for you now,” so I went to the lift, she came with me to the lift, and anther policeman came with me and up the lift into this little back room, it was really grotty, and I said, “Isn’t this grotty for Margaret Thatcher?” and they said, “Oh, yes – you should see her bedroom, it’s even grottier.” But they had to do that in order to hide where she was. And the whole time I was making her up, there was a helicopter going around the hotel like that. And she’d asked for a certain hairdresser in Blackpool, and when this hairdresser came in, she – I can’t remember the girl’s name – she said, “Hello, so-and-so, how are you? How are the children?” And I thought, “My God, when did she last see her?” And I was chatting to her, and at the end she gave us both a fiver – and that had never, ever happened before or happened again. Actually, she was very nice. And I knew she liked Clinique make-up, so I took a kit of Clinique and I gave her the wrong base, I gave her one that was greasy, because I thought, “She’s old, she’ll need the greasy.” And when I got home, she was doing the speech then, and she was running. She was sweating so much, it was all running, and I thought, “Oh, no – I’m going to be beheaded, I know it!”

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