Until I came across it in Mark Garnett’s book I had completely forgotten the story of Joyce McKinney. Infatuated with a young Mormon missionary called Kirk Anderson, she pursued him to England and, with the aid of an accomplice, kidnapped him and held him captive in a cottage in Devon. There she wooed him with passion after taking the initial precaution of manacling him to the bed. In order to win his affections, McKinney told the court, she would have ‘skied down Mount Everest in the nude with a carnation up my nose’.
This is one of the more farcical of the multitude of news items revisited by Garnett as he traces the history, or at any rate the headlines, of life in Britain since 1975. Readers with long memories will be reminded of the disappearance of John Stonehouse, the Grunwick affair, the