Dear Chief Secretary to the Treasury,
I'm afraid to tell you there's no money left.
Signed, Liam Byrne

(Outgoing Labour Chief Secretary to the Treasury. May 2010)

Friday, 11 September 2009


I think everybody has their own memory of 11th September 2001.

Mrs Rigby was unwell, and was sitting huddled in the corner of the settee with only the television for company when the newsflash interfered with whatever rubbish she was watching.

First reports suggested that a light plane had collided with one of the towers, then it was clear it was a major incident involving airliners ... and everything became more horrible than even Hollywood could imagine.

Mrs R's niece had been in New York that day, for a job interview. She was lucky, because she left the area before the carnage. The rest of us were lucky too, because our terrible fears were unfounded - but that short time of desperate worry will live with us for ever, offering us the teeniest insight into what those who lost their loved ones went through that day.

One of the striking images Mrs R remembers is that of the Eagle with a tear in it's eye. It said so much.

There isn't much else to say really, we know how terrible it was. Any thoughts about the bravery of rescuers have been mentioned before, many times over, by those far better at words than Mrs R. But she can't let the day go by without mentioning those very brave souls on United Airlines Flight 93 who are believed to have fought the highjackers, and who died at Shanksville.

Mrs Rigby believes we should never forget this atrocity and those who died, but we must remember them with sorrow, not revenge, in our hearts.

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