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The BBC has just announced that Margaret Thatcher, the former Prime Minister, died of a stroke this morning.

Former Prime Minister Baroness Thatcher has died at 87 following a stroke, her spokesman has said.

Lord Bell said: "It is with great sadness that Mark and Carol Thatcher announced that their mother Baroness Thatcher died peacefully following a stroke this morning."

Baroness Thatcher was Conservative prime minister from 1979 to 1990.

She was the first woman to hold the post. Her family is expected to make a further statement later.

Probably a blessed relief as she had been suffering increasingly from ill health including dementia for some time (to the extent that she earned the nickname "Lady Gaga".

5:34 AM PT: Few more snippets.

Apparently recently she had been staying at the Ritz Hotel in central London rather than her suburban mansion. The facilities like the lifts and the rooms size and shapes (not sure what that means) were better suited to her needs and was more convenient for hospital facilities.

There is apparently to be no lying in state but her funeral will be "semi state" and "similar to that of the Queen Mother". (I report that without making any further comment!!!!)

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