8 MARCH 2008

In a deep pink dress and wearing her traditional pearls and handbag, Baroness Thatcher left hospital on Saturday afternoon. The 82-year-old had been admitted to London's St Thomas' Hospital for precautionary tests after falling ill.

Baroness Thatcher was having dinner on Friday when she began to feel unwell, said her private secretary Mark Worthington. She was taken to hospital and kept in overnight.

The following morning, a spokeswoman for the Conservative Party was able to report that the former leader was feeling better and chatting to nurses.

By early afternoon, Britain's first female prime minister was well enough to go home. Looking bright, she stopped to wave at waiting journalists before getting in the back of a Jaguar.

Despite the cold, she took time to wave again at wellwishers as she arrived at her Belgravia home.

Her daughter, Carol, said the Baroness had been taken ill close to the House of Lords.

"Very wisely, at her age and with a history of little strokes, they decided to err on the side of caution," said the I'm A Celebrity… winner. "But it's good news today. She is doing well."

Baroness Thatcher, who ruled Britain for 11 years, suffered a series of minor strokes in 2002 and was advised to stop making public speeches. However, she has continued to fulfil a series of engagements, last appearing in public three weeks ago, when she opened a new infirmary for Chelsea pensioners.

Photo: ©
Wearing pearls and ignoring the cold, Baroness Thatcher stopped to wave at journalists and wellwishers as she left hospital in London Photo: © Getty Images
Photo: ©
Despite being in her 80s, Baroness Thatcher has kept up with her public appearances, last being seen in February at the opening of a new infirmary for the Chelsea pensioners Photo: © Getty Images