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Obituary: Heather Ball

Heather Ball

Readers of her regular column will be saddened to hear of the death of Heather Ball last month. As they will have gathered from her recent articles, she had come to suffer from a degenerative disease which increasingly disabled her.

Heather was born in 1933 and brought up in London to where her father had moved from Scotland and before reaching pension age had worked in the various kinds of factory, office and cleaning jobs that was often the only choice for working class women of her generation. Her father was a member of the Communist Party and she was brought up to join first the YCL and then the party itself. However, she was one of the many who left after 1956 following Khrushchev's secret speech about Stalin and the Hungarian uprising. She joined the Trotskyist Socialist Labour League—a case of out of the frying pan into the fire—from which she was expelled in 1960. This put her off vanguardist politics for good and she became active in the peace movement in East Anglia to where she and her family had moved. In 1994, tiring of single-issue politics too, she joined the Socialist Party. She was active in our Norwich Group and of course as a writer of a regular column in the Socialist Standard which many readers liked as a contrast to the other, more overtly political articles.

We extend our sympathy to her husband John, also a member, and family.