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Books by Colin Shindler
The BBC is a national institution that draws praise and criticism in equal measure. This entertaining collection of letters stretches over 40 years of programming and captures just how much joy, fury and hilarity the broadcaster has brought to the nation.
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These never-before-seen letters and telegrams to the BBC provide a fascinating alternative history and cover momentous events ranging from the broadcast of the Coronation in 1953 through to the groundbreaking drama of Grange Hill ('just say no, Zammo!').
The letters have been categorised into different themes including political bias and the Royal Family and this is the perfect read for anyone who loves reading all about the moral outrage of the nation.
Permission to speak, Sah! In the aftermath of the Second World War, over two million men were conscripted to serve in Britain's armed services. Some were sent abroad and watched their friends die in combat. Others remained in barracks and painted coal white. But despite delivering such varied experiences, National Service helped to shape the outlook of an entire generation of young British males. Historian Dr Colin Shindler has interviewed a wide range of ex-conscripts, from all backgrounds, across all ranks, and spanning the entire fourteen years that peacetime conscription lasted, and captured their memories in this engrossing book. From them, we experience the tension of a postwar Berlin surrounded by Russians, the exotic heat and colour of Tripoli in 1948, the brief but intense flashpoint of the Suez Crisis, and the fear of the Mau Mau uprising in Kenya. But we also hear about the other end of the scale, the conscripts who didn't make it outside the confines of their barracks, or in one case, beyond his home town. Through these conversations we learn as much about the changing attitudes of servicemen as war became more of a distant memory as we do about the varied nature of their experiences. We see, too, the changing face of British society across these pivotal years, which span everything from the coronation of Elizabeth II, to the birth of rock 'n' roll, to the beginning of the end of the Empire. The stories within these pages are fascinating. And they deserve to be told before they are lost forever.
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Before the Thai millions and Abu Dhabi billions, Manchester City was always a club that attracted fierce controversy. July 1965: Manchester City are on the scrapheap, managerless and languishing in Second Division mediocrity. Desperate to reverse the club's fortunes, the board turns to Joe Mercer, a respected football veteran hungry for a final chance to achieve management glory. Yet age and ill health are against Joe: he needs an assistant, and volatile, ambitious coaching genius Malcolm Allison is his man. Recently sacked from managing Plymouth, Malcolm is out to prove that his innovative tactics can breathe new life into the staid English game. City is the perfect opportunity to show off his talents - especially since Joe promises him the manager's job in two years' time . . . July 1970: City rule supreme, having just won their fifth trophy in as many seasons. The Mercer-Allison partnership is the most successful management team in the club's history. But, unwilling to let go of his success, Joe breaks his word and refuses to step aside. In order to fulfil his self-proclaimed destiny as the greatest manager in English football, an embittered Malcolm engineers a boardroom takeover that risks everything he and Joe have worked for. Based on real events, Colin Shindler's novel explores the clash of personalities that led to the spectacular rise and fall of Manchester City's 'Golden Age'. Malcolm and Joe's story is a cautionary tale of how ambition and betrayal brought down two men who had the world at their feet and of how two of the greatest management partners in British football history became the worst of friends.
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