Audrey Appleby, one time Chair of the Parish Council, died on 19th April aged 95. Bill Knowles has this recollection:
Audrey came to Monkton Deverill in 1967 and soon became first a Parish Councillor and before long Chairman. Her meetings were always agreeable, jocular (so long as long as any member of the public present shared our approach), never long and always effective. Only once were we remotely inefficient: not a meeting but an evening Civil Defence exercise, for which Audrey had summoned two of us to Windwhistle Cottage.
Audrey promised smoked salmon and other good things to eat. Michael Godwin and I were to play our part. We came armed with champagne, fit to match the best smoked salmon seen in these parts, in quality and quantity, before or since.
Phase 1, the crashed coach full of French school children, began the exercise at 18:00 hours. Our first response was quite sensible: we had only just finished Bottle 1, the Möet.
Phase 2, the crashed chemical tanker, was timed for 19:00 hours. By then Bottle 2 the Heidsieck had unobtrusively come and gone. Our problems seemed easier to solve, Audrey’s phoned report more “fluent.”. By the time Phase 3 had arrived Bottles had long overtaken Phases. But Audrey phoned in our final report with complete clarity, brevity and authority.
Other teams, it turned out, had somehow scored better than we had, save for the team of generals representing a village on the north side of the Plain. At an early stage they had contrived to kill off the entire population for miles around!