Mrs Betty Simmerson has recently died aged 92 but will never be forgotten. She and her husband, Reg, were among the first fighters against the United Kingdom joining the EEC and their consistent and active opposition heartened and inspired others to support the fight and to join it. When Reg died, Betty continued to campaign for our withdrawal from what has become the European Union and she supported The Campaign for an Independent Britain and many other organisations fighting for the freedom to govern ourselves. We should all be glad that she lived just long enough to see her own consistent efforts and those of others, including Reg, to regain the freedom to govern ourselves supported by the British people. Our country is now on the road to recovering its sovereignty so cavalierly sacrificed by successive parliaments since 1973.
Betty will be missed by all who knew her and she has died as a heroine of the great and successful campaign to get our country back. During the Second World War Betty nursed wounded servicemen returning from battlefields on occasions, she told me, severely burned or with intestines hanging out. At night she would be on the roof of her London hospital with a stirrup pump putting out incendiary bombs fires. She is remembered for the occasion when she aimed and hit Edward Heath with brown paper bags filled with flour at a Common Market meeting in Caxton Hall and was dragged away to be interrogated by Scotland Yard. She sold her grand piano to take activists to Belgium to demonstrate against Heath as he signed the treaty taking us into the Common Market and was thrown into prison because Heath had ordered no demonstrations should be allowed to spoil the occasion. Looking like everyone’s favourite grandmother, Betty was truly a British patriotic through and through.
(Photograph shows George West, CIB’s then Chairman, presenting an award to Mrs Betty Simmerson on 4th April 2009 at the CIB Annual Meeting in London.)