OBITUARY: Lord Mulley

I wholeheartedly agree with Tam Dalyell's praise of Fred Mulley [obituary, 16 March], writes D. J. Alflat. However, as Fred's constituency secretary for a number of years, I think that Mr Dalyell writes with diplomatically economical truth when he says, "Truth to tell, towards the end he became estranged from the new Sheffield Labour Party and was in effect deselected in 1982."

In fact, in the years leading up to that time the Labour Party in Sheffield had become infected with the collective madness of the aptly called loony left.

In that period, before I finally despaired of sanity returning and joined the SDP, I found myself the only member prepared to stand up and defend the policies of the pre-1979 Labour government against a barrage of boos and catcalls from left-wing bigots. The prevailing atmosphere was well illustrated when, in response to an attempt I had made to get a hearing of the case against unilateralism, some poor deluded soul got up and declared, "Of course, right-wing Labour members are really Conservatives, Conservatives are really Fascists, and Liberals are the worst of the lot"; and was greeted with rapturous applause.

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