My most recent book is All Behind You, Winston – Churchill's Great Coalition 1940-45, published by Aurum Press. It tells the story of the most remarkable gathering of leaders in modern history: the war ministry that saw the country through its darkest – and finest – hour.
When Winston Churchill became Prime Minister in May 1940, his appointment was viewed with great unease by very many in his own party, let alone the rest of Westminster. Yet he assembled around him a coalition government that went on to feed, fund, shelter, mobilise, arm, evacuate, heal and ultimately save Britain.
This is a book that takes the reader inside the War Cabinet room, through the corridors of Whitehall and into the chamber of the House of Commons. It chronicles the friendships and the feuds amongst an eclectic group of individuals, who not only helped Churchill win the war but also began to initiate the social reforms that shaped post-war Britain.
On 3 May 1961, after a trial conducted largely in secret, a man named George Blake was sentenced to an unprecedented forty-two years in jail. At the time few details of his crimes were made public. By his own confession, he was a Soviet spy and rumours laters circulated that he had endangered dozens of British agents, but the reasons for his severe punishment were never revealed.
Clough and Revie
The Rivals Who Changed the Face of English Football
Don Revie and Brian Clough were born a brisk walk away from each other in Middlesbrough, in 1927 and 1935 respectively. They were both brought up in that North East town which was ravaged by the Depression, and went on to become highly successful professional footballers – both playing for England. Then, as young managers, they both took clubs languishing in the doldrums (Leeds United and Derby County) and moulded them into championship winners.