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What are the 50 key events you need to understand to grasp British history?
If you could choose the 50 things that define British history, events of significance not only in themselves, but in their importance to wider themes running through our past, what would they be? Hugh Williams has made that selection, and the result is a fascinating overview of Britain’s past.
He refines British history into a series of key themes that represent a crucial strand in our history, and pinpoints the seminal events within those strands - Roots, from the Roman invasion to Britain’s entry into the Common Market; Fight, Fight and Fight Again, from the Battle of Agincourt to the Falklands War; The Pursuit of Liberty, from the Magna Carta through the Glorious Revolution to the foundation of the NHS; Home and Abroad, from Sir Francis Drake and Clive of India to the arrival of the SS Empire Windrush; and All Change, from Chaucer and the English language to the invention of the web.
With great clarity, simplicity and a zest for the marvellous stories that underpin many of these events, Hugh Williams explains the linkage between each one and its importance in the progress of British history as a whole. Along the way, he has some fascinating tales to tell, making this a highly enjoyable read as well as a perceptive insight into our shared past, and vital for anyone who wants quickly and enjoyably to grasp the essential facts about Britain’s history.
‘If history is your subject, then look no further than Fifty Things you Need to Know about British History. If you want an overview of what went on here, in bite-size chunks, throughout the centuries, this is the book for you’ The Lady
‘It offers insight and knowledge upon which to build a better understanding of the country we live in today’ Today’s History
Best General History ‘Combining simplicity with significance and anecdote with fact, this book will have relevance for every modern British reader’ Family History Monthly
About the author
Hugh Williams read Modern History at Oxford before beginning his career in television with the BBC. He has specialised in history and current affairs programming and in the early 80s was responsible for introducing the famous BBC history programme ‘Timewatch’ into the schedules. While Head of Broadcasting in Manchester he had the idea for and subsequently commissioned A.N. Wilson’s series ‘Eminent Victorians’.