Saturday, 15 March 2014

RIP: Tony Benn - From Someone Who Used to Complete Your Tax Return

Photo: Isujosh
I try to ring the changes with my blog and realise that this is the second time I've made special reference to an octogenerian this week. But I just had to mark the passing of Tony Benn as he was such a great and principled man and one of my heroes.  Isn't this a lovely photo of him?  It just demonstrates that good looks aren't just the reserve of youthful girlies.

Don't get me wrong.  I can't agree with everything he stood for.  After all I am a pinko leftie whose political stance is far more to the left of centre. I've just, with a guilty conscience, secured my son a grammar school place after all.   This chap, though, had oodles of integrity, that character trait that I strive to emulate  and look for in the other people that I choose to spend my time with.

In a past life I was a tax consultant and, in order to fund my studies when I was changing career to be an occupational therapist, I worked as many hours as I could in the 'tax return factory' of one of the big accountancy firms.  Between June and the submission deadline date at the end of January, as soon as lectures were over in term time,  I'd get on my bike. cycle to the office and do as many hours as I could.  It would have made  Norman Tebbit, another politician of a different persuasion proud. After all, I believe in paying my  own way in life.  That's not just a Tory thing I'll have you know.

How it worked was, as tax return information came in, it was put in a box at the end of group of cubicles in which I had a desk.  Us minions picked it up, inputted it into the computer and wrote the covering letter. Tony Benn was one of the firm's clients.  I actively waited for his information to come in and as soon as it did I nabbed it.   I regarded it as a privilege to do a small anonymous service for a man that I truly admired so much!


  1. He was a good man, who always acted, and spoke for what he believed was right and not what was expedient. We need more of his calibre in politics. You are right - it was a privilege to do that anonymous act for him, and a memory I am sure you will treasure.
    What a lovely post. I am writing a post about his MUM for my Lent Pause tomorrow!

  2. Will come on over and see your post tomorrow Angela! x

  3. The irony of mentioning educating my son at a grammar school and integrity in the same paragraph does not escape me!