Obituary: Barbara Ker-Seymer
Wednesday 30 June 1993
We seemed to meet mostly in the more salubrious of the subterranean bars and night-clubs where the sounds and effects of the continual bombing of London would be muffled. She was often to be found iwth the Surrealist artist Johnny Banting at his most morose, when she could only deflect his despairing, suicidal moods with her mixture of compassion and humour.
One such evening I remember vividly. Barbara, who was sharing a banquette with her old friend Goronwy Rees, beckoned me and my then companion, John Rhodes, to join them. I was anxious as to whether Barbara would like John but all too willing to sit beside the devastatingly attractive Goronwy. As the night wore on I became aware of our foursome having turned into distinct entities - Barbara and John on one side of the table, Goronwy and myself on the other. I suppose I should not have been so surprised when a few weeks later John and Barbara were married]
Not so long afterwards when I, too, was newly married Barbara gave a party to show a short jazz film by her great friend Len Lye, that endearingly eccentric master of the cartoon film and exponent of jazz. As the film was so short it was immediately run through again and in the appreciative silence that followed I heard my husband's only too audible voice saying: 'I preferred the second film.' I cringed with embarrassment but Barbara turned this gaffe into wit.
There were other parties with tantalising, half-recognised faces, combined with wickedly strong drinks that sent shyness flying, but family life intervened when John and Barbara's son Max was born.
One day Barbara brought Max to nursery tea, humping his pushchair in and out of buses from one end of London to the other. The occasion was not a success as Max would keep launching himself like a missile against the nursery window while my two girls cowered under the tea-table. How odd it was to see Barbara totally content with late motherhood and sublimely unruffled at what I feared were going to be young Max's last hours on this earth.
- 1 Half of young women unable to ‘locate vagina’ and 65% find it difficult to say the word
- 2 Perez Hilton apologises for Jennifer Lawrence naked photo leak
- 3 A teacher speaks out: 'I'm effectively being forced out of a career that I wanted to love'
- 4 Mexican woman becomes world’s 'oldest person' at 127
- 5 Jennifer Lawrence 'naked sex video' will be leaked threatens 4Chan celebrity photo hacker
Rotherham child sex abuse scandal: Labour Home Office to be probed over what Tony Blair's government knew - and when
What do immigrants really think of Britain? Polish immigrant's Reddit post goes viral
Ashya King: Parents of five-year-old boy refused permission to visit him in hospital and denied bail at Spanish court
With Douglas Carswell joining Ukip, my party has taken another giant step forward
When elitism grips the top of British society to this extent, there is only one answer: abolish private schools
Ukip Douglas Carswell defection: Tory MP jumps ship to join Nigel Farage
£32000 - £40000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: HR Manager (Generalist) -Old...
£45000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Talent / Learning & Development Mana...
Up to £40,000: Ashdown Group: Standalone HR Manager role for an SME business b...
£350 - £400 per day: Orgtel: HR Analyst - Banking - Bristol - £350 - £400 per ...