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Anthony Berry

The Hon. Sir Anthony Berry (February 12, 1925 - October 12, 1984) was a British politician, Conservative MP for the constituency[?] of Enfield Southgate[?], and a junior minister in Margaret Thatcher's government.

Sir Anthony was born in 1925, as a son of Sir James Berry, 1st Viscount Kemsley, and his wife Mary (née Holmes). His aristocratic connections led to his becoming a treasurer of the royal household[?].

He married firstly, in 1954, the Hon. Mary Cynthia Burke Roche (born 1934). They had four children, named Alexandra (born 1955), Antonia (born 1957), Joanna Cynthia (born 1957, twin of Antonia), and Edward (born 1960). They divorced in 1966. It is perhaps worth noting that Sir Anthony's first wife was the elder sister of the Hon. Frances Ruth Burke Roche (born 1936), who was to become Countess Spencer and mother of Diana, Princess of Wales.

Sir Anthony married Sarah Anne Clifford-Turner in 1966 and had two more children: George (born 1967), and Sasha Jane (born 1969).

On 12th October 1984, Sir Anthony was killed by a bomb planted in the Grand Hotel in Brighton, during the Conservative Party's conference. He was 59. Three others were also killed in the blast, and a fifth person died from her injuries about a month later.

In September 1986, Patrick Magee[?] (also known as the "Brighton bomber"), then aged 35, was found guilty of planting the bomb, exploding it, and five counts of murder. He received eight life sentences: seven for offences relating to the Brighton bombing, and the eighth for a separate bombing conspiracy. However, he was released from prison in 1999, having served only 14 years in prison (including the time before his sentencing), under the terms of the Good Friday agreement.

Since Magee's release, Sir Anthony's daughter Jo Berry (a mother of three living in North Wales) has become renowned for her series of controversial meetings with the Brighton bomber, as part of her quest to come to terms with the bombing and, in her own words, "to bring something positive out of it". Some of their discussions were filmed for an Everyman programme, shown on BBC2 on Thursday 13th December 2001. Although she has received some criticism for these meetings, she is regarded by many as a courageous campaigner for peace.

For further information, write to:-

Jo Berry
25 Pensyflog
Porthmadog
Gwynedd
N. Wales
LL49 9LB
<jofreespirit@yahoo.com>

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