Hugh Price

- by Murray Horton

I am indebted to Hugh's widow, Beverley Randell, who edited this, deleting mistakes and writing substantive additional material which I have incorporated into it.

Hugh Price , who died in December 2009, aged 80, was a longstanding, extremely supportive and very, very generous CAFCA member. He was a member of the Anti-Bases Campaign for a much shorter time, but ditto for the level of support and generosity. And he was a founder pledger (i.e. since 1991) to the CAFCA/ABC Organiser Account, which provides my income, pledging $50 a month for all those years, as well as being a very generous donor when appeals went out that the Organiser Account needed a boost.

Of course, Hugh was much, much more than that. In contrast to his small stature, he was a giant in the world of publishing with Price Milburn, the company he co-founded in 1957, specialising in learn to read and educational books, with a general list of New Zealand non-fiction books, poetry and plays. He was the subject of a major obituary in the Dominion Post (16/1/10; “Energetic bookworm took words to millions”; Peter Kitchin), which was reprinted in edited form in the ChristchurchPress (23/1/10; “A life built amid books”). “Price Milburn’s learn to read and storybook list ran to more than 400 titles, all edited or written by Price’s wife, Beverley Randell”. Sales of those Price Milburn books ran into the millions, and continue to do so 40 years later. The series is now published by Cengage Learning of Australia.

It was as a publisher that Hugh was primarily known by the public. We, and I, had no dealings with him in that capacity (although we, and I, certainly benefited from his generosity that flowed from the great success of his business. And I was keenly aware that I was in the presence of a bookman, indeed a book family, when I observed the booklined walls of the room in which he met me on the couple of occasions that I visited him at home). The word to describe that is compartmentalisation – we had dealings with Hugh in one compartment of his life. It was a very important one for him (and us) but nonetheless only one of the many compartments of his life. So what we’ve decided to do for Hugh’s obituary is a two parter (which is unique). I will confine myself to writing about the aspects of Hugh’s life with which we had direct involvement and will not attempt to write a proper obituary. I had no contact with those other aspects of his life and didn’t know him at all personally (the number of times we actually met could be counted on the fingers of one hand). Publisher Roger Steele is producing a book on Hugh later this year and Hugh’s good friend, Brian Easton, has undertaken to review that for Watchdog and has promised that his review will also serve as a proper obituary. So, stay tuned. To quote the immortal phrase: “But wait, there’s more”. And there really will be.

Keynote Speaker At Seminar On SIS

Hugh joined CAFCINZ (now CAFCA) in 1985 and remained a member continuously right up until his death. To the best of my knowledge, the only time he was ever mentioned in Watchdog was right back when he first joined. Number 51, December 1985 carried a two page report (anonymously, as all Watchdog articles were in those days) about the two WB Sutch memorial seminars which CAFCINZ held on one weekend in September 1985, to mark the 10 th anniversary of Bill Sutch’s death (I refer you to my article “Speaking Ill Of the Dead: The Vicious Smear Campaign Against Bill Sutch And Jack Lewin”, in Watchdog 113, December 2006,, to refresh your memory about Bill Sutch, his persecution by the Security Intelligence Service [SIS], and his 1975 acquittal on espionage charges under the former Official Secrets Act. He died a few months later). We organised two seminars appropriate to Sutch’s memory – one was on economics and the other was on the SIS. You can read the full report online at Because the subject of CAFCA and the SIS is still very timely and relevant (see my article “SIS Spied On CAFCA For Quarter Of A Century”, in Watchdog 120, May 2009, it’s worth quoting nearly all of that 1985 report on the SIS seminar.

“We had invited all of the ‘radicals and subversives’ from Muldoon's famous 81 Tour list, plus others personally affected by SIS action, e.g. Rob Campbell, Trevor Richards, etc, etc. Not surprisingly most didn't even reply when we explained that they would have to come at their own expense. But three did come from Wellington. Richard Suggate gave a very detailed account of his fruitless attempt to secure his SIS file. Owen Wilkes talked about his mail being tampered with by Customs on behalf of the SIS (plus a hilarious off the record yarn). Don Carson detailed his court action against the Crown as a result of appearing in that 81 list. He appealed to the Commissioner of Security Appeals and won, then sued the Crown and gained an out of court settlement (plus a substantial chunk of his SIS file). It provides a fascinating insight into the minds of our very own spies (all three of those guys appeared in the SIS file on CAFCA; see the May 09 Watchdog article cited above. Ed). “The keynote speaker was also a Wellingtonian, Hugh Price, of the NZ Council for Civil Liberties. He provided a graphic 40 year history of the SIS, under its various previous names, and proved one thing. Consistency. They've been consistently paranoid and stupid throughout. And vindictive, viz their hounding Sutch into the grave…

“…The favourable publicity didn't finish with the seminars. The Press ran another excellent feature, under the startling heading ‘Is the SIS Subversive?’ quoting extensively from Professor Bill Willmott, of the Canterbury Council for Civil Liberties (which co-sponsored the seminar). Because our resulting press statement gave the impression we were about to publish lists of SIS agents, the Sunday News rang to see if we were prepared to go to prison and if so, could they have the scoop! It ran a quirky little story, quoting former Cock editor, Chris Wheeler, as saying that the SIS is regarded as a joke overseas. Wheeler, who improbably described himself as ‘a motor mower repair man’ (well, who'd want to admit to being a journalist?) fully supported CAFCINZ' call for a commission of inquiry into the SIS. We find ourselves in company with the (Opposition) National Party, which wants to investigate the SIS part in the Rainbow Warrior bombing. We also want the current Government review into external intelligence extended to include the SIS…”.

Sadly the Watchdog article didn’t include anything of what Hugh had to say, although it did offer keynote papers for sale for $5 (so his paper, entitled “Why the SIS Should Be Abolished” might be buried in the ancient files held by either me or Bill Rosenberg). Fortunately the good old SIS recorded as much as they could about the seminars, including newspaper articles, and even a report from their spy inside the Christchurch branch of the former Communist Party, who reported that: “(named individual) said that the CPNZ was not happy with the idea of more information being made available from the files, as they felt that was treating the symptoms rather than the disease. The Party point of view was that the whole system needed to be changed, with the total abolition of the NZSIS…. (named individual) said that CAFCINZ had not researched the topic of the NZSIS at all well and relied on uncorroborated statements from individuals who expressed grievances at their treatment at the hands of the SIS” (CPNZ Christchurch Branch, 8/10/85, NZSIS, declassified 10/11/08). So there! The SIS file also includes a transcript of a Radio New Zealand news item after the seminars, featuring interviews with both myself and Hugh. He was asked if he was satisfied with the “form and performance of the present SIS?” To which he replied: “Well, no, I am not really. I think that the present SIS has always put far too much emphasis on what they see as Cold War conflicts. They’ve seen the world in a particular way. It’s a picture of the world that they’ve built up, I think, because of their close contact with overseas intelligence agencies, particularly of course the CIA in the United States. And I think this has given them a rather extreme view of the world and one that doesn’t really have much relevance to the interests of New Zealanders” (2ZB, 30/9/85, “Inquiry called for into SIS”, NZSIS, declassified 10/11/08).

The SIS Was A Lifelong Campaign For Hugh

To quote from his Dominion Post obituary: “He returned to Wellington (from Britain) in late 1956 to be manager of Modern Books, a co-op retailer at 48a Manners Street with 3,000 members. Modern Books was an important source of books for New Zealanders. It was Price’s pledge that the shop would locate, order, and import any book from any publisher anywhere for any New Zealander. It not only catered for readers in English, but imported books for migrants to read in their own language.

“The shop attracted the attention of the Police Special Branch. There was an assumption that it was a Communist Party front, notably because it sold books in foreign languages from Iron Curtain countries along with books from obscure publishers in the West”, and even from India and South America. The Special Branch already had Hugh on its files because, with two other students, he had compiled a shortlived cyclostyled sheet called Newsquote, which consisted of commentaries they had clipped from foreign newspapers but which had not seen the light of day in the local press.

“Penned by reputable journalists or commentators from illustrious newspapers, among them the Wall Street Journal, The Times and The New York Times, they were somehow viewed as potentially deleterious to the conduct of good order in Cold War New Zealand. Price sought to have more than 50 years of official covert attention ended for what he described as an official fantasy. The matter was resolved last year (2009) when he received a letter from the SIS, successor to the Special Branch, telling him that ‘hindsight shows Newsquote to have been misjudged’, but there was no apology” (interestingly, there was no mention at all of the SIS – or the Police Special Branch - in the edited version of this obituary as it appeared in the Press).

50 Year Battle To Find Out Why He Was Spied On

This whole saga is a fascinating story and one which is worth examining at length. Ironically, in light of its omission of the whole subject of the SIS from its 2010 obituary of Hugh, the Press had earlier run a half page feature article about his battle with the SIS (19/2/05; “A matter of record: A Wellington man is battling to have the SIS open 50 year old files on an incident that blighted several careers”; Sarah Boyd; reprinted from Dominion Post). “ Hugh Price is a bit of Leftie. Always has been; he was a member of the socialist club at university and a Labour Party member. But in the 1950s he was portrayed as a subversive Communist unfit to be employed in the public service. He was refused jobs and later denied a visa to the United States. Even today, he can’t get to the bottom of what it was all about – the SIS have told him much of the information still needs to be kept under wraps for security reasons….

“Price’s saga begins in the early 1950s, when he was studying for an MA in History at Victoria University. He and his friends began reading United States newspapers as background for an American history paper that ranged up to contemporary times. They encountered stimulating articles and hit on the idea of circulating the clippings more widely. So they bought a typewriter, hired a typist and ser about compiling a fortnightly periodical which they called Newsquote. The first issue rolled off the Gestetner printer in September 1952 – eight pages of verbatim articles from newspapers including the Washington Post and The New York Times, mostly about American foreign policy and the American economy. People were invited to sign up for 22 issues for ₤1, and before long they had 60 subscribers.

“ Hugh Price had the job of printing Newsquote. ‘It was a heck of a lot of work, actually. I’m amazed we did it. But we got very enthusiastic feedback’. Looking at the faded copies now, it’s difficult to see why they caused the fuss that was to ensue. The articles are often critical of American policy but they are from mainstream newspapers and there’s no accompanying editorial comment. They were eagerly read and no-one seemed to be offended by the content.

“’Then suddenly the world blew up’, recalls Doug Foy, now 77 and one of the instigators of Newsquote. It came in a phone call from the boss of their typist. She worked in the Department of Industries and Commerce and was doing the Newsquote work for a bit of spare cash. (Her boss said) ‘I’m afraid you’re going to have to find a new typist. The powers that be have found out that she is working on Newsquote and unless she stops doing it, she’ll be sacked’. Foy already knew about the powers that be. Unlike Price, he was a Communist at this stage and was well aware that he was considered an undesirable. He had been moved from his job at Treasury to the Valuation Department – he reckons State service bosses thought he’d be less trouble there. He didn’t stay long and was working in a TAB agency by the time Newsquote was set up. So there were no job consequences for him of his involvement – the repercussions of his political leanings had already occurred. He knew he would never get another job in the public service, so he trained as an accountant. He says people forget what the political climate was like in those days, with an extremely conservative Government under Sid Holland and little tolerance of dissent. ‘There were quite a number of people who were removed from their positions in the civil service’.

“Another man who was involved in Newsquote worked for a large firm of accountants. They were visited by the Special Branch – the forerunner of the Security Intelligence Service – and told that Newsquote was an undercover front for Communists. The young man was sacked. The papers released to Price acknowledge that someone from Special Branch approached a member of the accountancy firm, but they add: ‘The member of the firm then, on his own initiative, informed the heads of the firm, who then dismissed (him)’. The crackdown didn’t have an immediate impact on Price, as he was still a student. Newsquote found a new typist and kept on publishing until looming final examinations put paid to the enterprise. At the end of 1953, Price decided to get a temporary public service job until he could get a passage on a ship to Britain. He was told he couldn’t be employed because he was a security risk. Price went to see the head of the public service, who said he would look into the matter. (When Price went back to see him, he said) ‘you’re going overseas and when you come back, you’ll find there’s no problem’.

“So Price worked for Whitcombe and Tombs instead. When he returned from overseas he managed a bookshop for a while but eventually decided that he wanted to work in school publications. As it was then part of the Department of Education, he realised that he needed the question mark over his security status resolved. Through a connection with Labour Prime Minister Walter Nash, he managed to get a meeting with a Security Service (now SIS) representative and was assured it has all been sorted out” (note that, unlike in his Dominion Post obituary, there is no mention of his being manager of Modern Books also bringing him to the attention of Special Branch. Ed.).

Shouting Match At US Embassy

“Then, years later in 1972 he and his family needed a United States visa to transit through the US, but despite applying weeks before, it still hadn’t arrived the day before they were due to go. Price went to the US Embassy in person. ‘There was a lot of shouting. They said they would have given me a visa if I’d been honest in my visa application and said I’d been a Communist. But I wasn’t going to say that because I never was one’. The Embassy official at first refused to even return their New Zealand passports; then finally he did with a stamp saying TWV (Travel Without Visa), which would cause great unpleasantness upon arrival in the States. Price thinks the situation was exacerbated by encountering a particularly zealous official at the Embassy. In the heat of the argument the official referred to anti-Communist Senator Joe McCarthy as ‘a great patriot’. When they returned from overseas, Price got all sots of people to vouch for him and won an apology from the Americans. His passport was stamped with a permanent right of entry to the US.

“Looking back, the thing Price is most angry about is the upset the whole saga caused his mother back in Masterton. ‘Her view was that her only child had gone to Wellington and got in with the wrong crowd and this was the result. It really affected her greatly’. That’s partly what has spurred him on to try to get to the bottom of it. He wants to know why Special Branch was so interested in a group of young people circulating copies of mainstream newspaper articles. He spent all of last year (2004) in correspondence with, first the SIS (which took over from Special Branch in 1957) and then the Ombudsmen’s office, trying to get information released under the Official Information Act. SIS Director Richard Woods replied in a letter that a search of its records had unearthed only seven documents related to Newsquote, and much of that couldn’t be released. ‘Text has been deleted that would reveal sources of information or methods that, despite the passage of the years, are still sensitive’.

“One of the documents notes Newsquote was following ‘the CP (Communist Party) line – but whether the purpose of its publication is to supply Left reading or whether its object is to be a guide or background to persons preparing current Communist propaganda is not at present clear’. A few more lines were released as a result of the Ombudsman’s intervention, including a letter Price wrote to the Listener in 1977. It’s hard to see why this was withheld in the first place. About half the material Price has received after a year of haggling has been blacked out and sheds almost no light on the affair. The SIS has said the deletions are to protect privacy or because the release would be prejudicial to security or the supply of information. It has refused an interview to elaborate, saying only that Price’s request was dealt with in accordance with the Official Information Act and with the views of the Ombudsman.

“The Ombudsman who dealt with the case, John Belgrave, told Price last month (January 2005) that he felt his investigation was concluded and all the appropriate information had been released. He says he can understand the serious impact the incident had at the time but for the Special Branch ‘it appears to have been no more than a routine investigation involving a relatively sparse amount of paperwork’. Belgrave said he found nothing to indicate why Special Branch took the actions it did. ‘I suspect that the only answer one can give is that, as with many other historical events, people did what they thought was right at the time’.

“It’s left Price frustrated. He’s told the SIS he doesn’t mind if all names are deleted and he cannot think of what the security implications could possibly be of releasing the rest of the information now. He wants some understanding of why it happened – and an apology. ‘I really just want an admission that the SIS - or the Police Special Branch as it was - acted wrongly, or illegally. It’s not that hard’. Foy, who has followed Price’s quest with great interest, reckons the security people thought Newsquote was much bigger than what it was. ‘They misjudged us completely. We were not about to lead a revolution in New Zealand, or send aid to Guatemala or the other countries the US subsequently invaded’…”.

When the Cold War was at its most intense, Western politicians and media used to lavish praise on the brave souls in the former Soviet Union and its Eastern European satellites who used to write, publish and distribute samizdat (underground) publications that carried news and views that were otherwise banned by Government censors. How ironic then that a very mild version of exactly that same sort of police State spying and repression was carried out right here, directed at a group of young Wellingtonians whose “crime” was to republish material from major American papers.

No Apology

As his Dominion Post obituary made clear: “The matter was resolved last year (2009) when he received a letter from the SIS, successor to the Special Branch, telling him that ‘hindsight shows Newsquote to have been misjudged’, but there was no apology”. Hugh died just a couple of days before New Year, so it took until the last year of his life to resolve this matter, and then not particularly satisfactorily. I last met Hugh in June 09, when a mutual friend took me to visit him at his home. I knew that Hugh had terminal cancer (he had told me that in a phone conversation a couple of years previously). During our visit nothing was said about that, beyond Hugh mentioning in passing that he’d had chemotherapy the previous week. All three of us knew that he didn’t have long to go, but he was determined to keep plugging away at the SIS. So that’s what we talked about in our last ever conversation. He was very keen to find someone to write up into a book all these SIS files that have been released within the past couple of years (finding such an author, let alone the funding required, remains wishful thinking at this stage).

He told me that his “relationship” with the SIS had changed once the present Director, Warren Tucker, had assumed command. Whereas all previous communications had been letters basically telling him “go away”, Tucker invited Hugh to come to SIS HQ in Wellington to meet with him and discuss what he wanted. Hugh took his wife, Beverley, for moral support. Tucker was accompanied by a couple of other agents. Hugh surmised that they were probably the fellows who had been writing him the “piss off” letters signed by the previous Directors. Tucker agreed to release a sanitised version of what Hugh had been seeking for all these decades and, in return, said that he wanted to pick Hugh’s brain for SIS historical purposes, so that “we can try to understand what the Left was thinking in the 1940s and 50s”. Hugh was, understandably, taken aback to be considered some sort of spokesman for the Left of long ago. But Tucker pressed on, asking him why people would have wanted to have supported the former Soviet Union, which Tucker described as “repugnant”. Hugh told me that he answered thus:” I’m older than you and I remember the war, when the Soviet Union earned our gratitude for defeating the Nazis”. But Hugh was never a Communist, indeed he never belonged to any party further Left than Labour and then the Alliance for a while.

My June 09 weekend in Wellington turned out to have a strong SIS theme, actually. Not only did I have that final meeting with Hugh, which was dominated by discussion about the SIS. I had gone up there for a party, which was also attended by SIS Director, Warren Tucker, who was there along with his wife and their youngest son (I got to speak to all three). At the same party were two people – both with very long connections to CAFCA – who had that very day received letters from Tucker saying that the SIS would neither confirm nor deny that it held files on them. New Zealand really is a very small country.

Writer About Spies & Their Cockups

Hugh never appeared in Watchdog again after 1985. But he featured twice in Peace Researcher 35, the Anti-Bases Campaign’s newsletter, in December 2007, both appearances being in connection with the SIS or one of its predecessors. He wrote an article entitled “The Case Of Professor Fred Hollows: Hounded Out Of NZ By SIS”: (“In Australia and throughout the world, Hollows is respected to a degree that is roughly equivalent in New Zealand to our respect of Sir Edmund Hillary – so why is he Australian Man of the year and not New Zealand Man of the Year? After all, he was born in New Zealand and spent a good deal of his life here. That fact is that Fred Hollows left New Zealand because he was so irritated at being probed and chivvied by officers of the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service, who wrote to his overseas colleagues to ask about his political opinions. In his autobiography he wrote in his usual down to earth style: ‘…it really pissed me off… to think that these [SIS] numbskulls were keeping tabs on me in New Zealand…’’). You can read Hugh’s full article online at

And Jeremy Agar reviewed Hugh’s 2006 book “The Plot To Subvert Wartime New Zealand”, the stranger than fiction account of how a criminal called Syd Ross tried to con the Prime Minister, Peter Fraser, into believing that he had been invited, as an explosives expert, to join a subversive Nazi plot to commit sabotage and assassinate politicians. Fraser, very properly, asked the newly formed Security Intelligence Bureau, headed by the English Army officer, Major Kenneth Folkes, to investigate this plausible story of a wartime Nazi plot. Folkes’ so-called investigation lasted for four months, during which time the SIB provided Ross with an alias, a car and a generous expense account. Jeremy wrote: “It is a fascinating story and monumentally embarrassing for our wartime spies and politicians. Price had to be persistent to gain access to the archives, which he attributes to a lack of staff resources. It’s a charitable view and, undoubtedly, to an extent, true. Yet the suggestion remains that the final word on the whole caper is yet to be written. Price was denied almost all material directly to do with Folkes”.

In spite of this denial, Hugh found that there were enough documents to show that Folkes did little to investigate Ross. Clearly he did not want Ross to be proved a liar. Within a few days of meeting Ross, Folkes wrote to the Prime Minister saying that the story “had substance. The matter is developing slowly and is leading to a clique already under notice”. Folkes knew this was untrue – the SIB had no clique under notice. But Folkes very much wanted Fraser to believe that the plot was real, because then he, Folkes, could demand extraordinary powers to arrest people on suspicion, and become a formidable force in the land. Ross was given a uniform, and as Captain Calder, lived the high life at taxpayers’ expense making up false evidence that Folkes insisted he provide. Worse, before the reports were sent to the Prime Minister, Folkes and his staff added their own embellishments to “improve” the evidence Ross invented. The reports that reached Fraser were finally so unlikely that he asked the Commissioner of Police to intervene. Ross was arrested and confessed. In the dark days of 1942, Fraser could not court-martial his Head of Security for dishonesty. He exposed him as a gullible idiot instead, forcing his resignation. Later, in Parliament, Fraser called Folkes a “grave misfit”, hinting that he knew just how unacceptable his actions were.

Jeremy’s review concluded: “Officialdom might still feel able to pass him off as an aberration. Fraser called the Ross caper ‘one of the most extraordinary instances of human credulity I have heard of in my life…I hope the story will be written’. Price, whose career in publishing in Wellington was long and successful, has done so as a sort of retirement project. It’s an entertaining read. But did Fraser pick the right word? Was it a tale of credulity or cynical manipulation?” You can read the full review online at In 2009 Hugh’s book was adapted for a TV drama (yet to be screened) called “Spies And Lies”, featuring Anthony Starr of Outrageous Fortune fame. In “Spies And Lies” Folkes’ dishonesty is made clear.

Hugh was actively interested in the whole subject of intelligence agencies, not just the SIS or New Zealand. When the Anti-Bases Campaign was fundraising to bring Mike Frost, a Canadian former signals intelligence spy turned author, on a 2001 speaking tour of NZ, Hugh invited me to his home in Wellington when I was up there, to discuss how he could help. His generosity was extensive – not only a $1,000 donation but he also provided a flat (from among his rental properties) for Mike and his wife Carole to stay in during the Wellington leg of the tour ( Bob Leonard’s report on the Frost tour can be read in Peace Researcher 24, December 2001, Hugh joined ABC in 2002 and remained a member until his death.

Active Opponent Of New Right

Nor was his active support for CAFCA confined to the SIS or intelligence. For example, Bill Rosenberg wrote a paper entitled “Sovereignty Versus The Transnationals” (published in Watchdog 70, August 1992, page 22, It still exists as a generic CAFCA leaflet, hard copy only, having been updated in 1998). We circulated this to other groups for publication. Hugh, on his own initiative and at his own expense, published it as a proper little booklet and distributed it throughout the country. He was a vocal critic of the whole agenda of “making the NZ economy attractive to foreign investors”. He wrote and published four editions of his 24 page booklet, “Know The New Right: A Short Paper On The Ideology That Is Changing New Zealanders’ Lives”, starting in 1993 and most recently revised in 2006. In 2000 he wrote and published “ FA Hayek’s New Right Manifesto: A Reaction By Hugh Price To Hayek’s Book ‘The Fatal Conceit’” (Friedrich von Hayek, 1899-1992, was one of the ideological fathers of laissez faire economics and the politics of the New Right).

The last time I heard from Hugh was a handwritten letter he sent after receiving Watchdog 121 (August 2009): “I must write to congratulate you on issue 121 of Watchdog. Magnificent!! Absolutely full of interest to me, a mine of information…” (letter, 15/8/09; the emphasis is Hugh’s). And he was regularly extremely generous – his last cheque to CAFCA, in August 2009, was for $2,000! He also paid for the membership of friends of his whom he thought should be getting Watchdog. I have already mentioned that Hugh was a foundation pledger (i.e. from 1991) to the CAFCA/ABC Organiser Account, which provides my income. Not only did he pledge $50 a month, but on two separate occasions, a decade apart, he also donated $1,000 a pop.

Hugh was both a gentle man and a gentleman. I well remember the reaction of my former partner (who was then CAFCINZ Chairperson) when she met him at our 1985 seminar on the SIS: “What a dapper little man”. He was a radical liberal in the very best sense of both words. Nor was the admiration confined to “our side” of the argument. When I Googled his name after his death I was surprised to find a Herald on Sunday column (10/1/10) by former Act MP, Deborah Coddington, in which she described him as a “ noted Wellington publisher and lovely man... I still have his email with an invitation to visit and discuss a book I'm researching: ‘I have a few suggestions - do you ever come to Wellington with time to call on us? A conversation could be more comical than an exchange of letters! Cheers!! HUGH PRICE’” (capitals in the original). Hugh definitely was a lovely man, a man of letters, of culture, of strong personal and political principles (I haven’t even mentioned his numerous other political activities, from the Council of Civil Liberties to the anti-apartheid movement – I’ll leave them for Brian Easton to cover in a later issue this year), an extremely generous man, and a pleasure to be with. He will be very deeply missed, but will never be forgotten.

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