We lived in Bedfordshire at the time, but were staying in Oxford because my husband’s father was very ill – in fact, he died on 27th February.
We had both intended to march but in the event John had to stay at home to look after his elderly parents. They both agreed very strongly with what we were doing.
Our daughter was in Ghana, teaching for three months. She too would have come if she could and she later saw the march on the news.
So I travelled up as the sole representative of my family. I saw fourteen coaches setting out from Oxford, but I caught the train – there was standing room only, as an awful lot of other people were travelling for the same reason!
I avoided the crowd and went straight to Hyde Park, which was cold, grey and empty, where I hung around for a few hours. Eventually the crowds started pouring in and I marched with them. One woman in a dressing gown was watching from her hotel window and we called to her to come down – there would have been time for her to dress and have breakfast and still jopin in! I’ve never seen such numbers.
I remember the bitter cold, and hearing Michael Foot and Adrian Mitchell, who recited his poem ‘Tell me lies about Iraq’. They’re both dead now. I went home early, and the rest of the month is very painful to remember because the war started despite our efforts and my beloved father-in-law died.
I was, however, able to show him next day’s paper which was full of the news of that amazing and unforgettable march.