Revealed: Chief Rabbi’s message of support to Margaret Thatcher after Brighton bombing


A hand-written note from Lord Jakobovits to Margaret Thatcher in the aftermath of the Brighton bombing has been revealed for the first time.

In his letter, the then Chief Rabbi expressed his “shock and sorrow at this terrible outrage”, hours after the blast ripped apart the Brighton Grand Hotel during the Conservative Party conference.

Baroness Thatcher escaped serious injury, but the IRA bomb killed five people including MP Anthony Berry, and injured 34.

Lord Jakobovits wrote: “Your personal example of fortitude will be a source of inspiration and solace to the entire nation.

“We are all profoundly grateful for the miraculous escape of yourself, your husband and so many of your trusted colleagues and helpers.”

The letter, written after Shabbat and Succot on the evening of Saturday, October 13, 1984, is signed “most sincerely yours, Immanuel Jakobovits”.

It is well-known that the pair shared a special bond during Baroness Thatcher’s years in Downing Street.

Days later the Prime Minister replied, writing: “Thank you so much for your letter following the bomb outrage at Brighton. The messages of support which I have received from all sections of the community and the prayers which have been said by those of all faiths have been a source of great support over these last few days.

“I know you will share my determination not to allow those responsible for such violence to prevail.”

The letters were revealed by the Margaret Thatcher Foundation, which is making her archive of personal papers available to the public, ahead of the 30th anniversary of the bombing.

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