MP pays tribute to ‘formidable leader’ Margaret Thatcher

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South Suffolk MP Tim Yeo has described former prime minister Margaret Thatcher as a “formidable leader” following her death.

Baroness Thatcher died on Monday at the age of 87 after suffering a stroke. She was the first woman to be prime minister of Britain and ran the country between 1979 and 1990.

Conservative MP Mr Yeo, who worked with Mrs Thatcher after joining the party in the early 1980s, said she had left a lasting legacy.

“She was the most formidable leader the country has seen in the last 50 years,” he said.

“She single-handedly changed the course of where the country was heading in the 1980s.”

Mr Yeo said that Mrs Thatcher had been responsible for a number of “pioneering policies” and even though she divided opinion she was always well respected.

“She was a true leader and was not afraid to make hard decisions,” he said.

“People respected that and she will be widely mourned even by those who did not share her views.”

Mr Yeo added that it had been a privilege to work alongside Mrs Thatcher in government.

“I got to know her well over the years and attending meetings with her was always an experience,” he said.

“She had a formidable intellect and you never felt she would be wrong-footed.”