She famously sent a task force 8,000 miles to the South Atlantic to regain the Falkland Islands. Warships, cruise liners and cargo vessels were dispatched from
Portsmouth, Southampton and other ports along the South Coast to oust troops Argentinian invaders.
She later survived an IRA bomb which shattered the Grand Hotel at Brighton where her Conservative Party was holding its annual conference. It seemed Margaret Thatcher was invincible.
But today she succumbed to old age and ill-health. Our political correspondent Phil Hornby has been looking back over The Thatcher Years.