This thoughtful, and often amusing, memoir traces the life of James Douglas-Hamilton, which has seen him serve in three different chambers. Following 23 Years as a Conservative MP at Westminster, he became a member of the new Scottish Parliament and now sits in the House of Lords. Through his eyes we gain a fascinating insight into historic events – from his early memories as a pageboy at the Queen’s coronation to his time as a Minister for Margaret Thatcher’s Government. Previously unpublished correspondences between the author and the Iron Lady shed new light on the controversial decision to introduce the community charge, or poll tax, in Scotland.
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This memoir also includes new material from recently declassified MI5 papers documenting the mysterious flight to Britain made by Rudolf Hess, the Nazi Deputy Leader, during the Second World War to see the author’s father. Douglas-Hamilton’s research into this extraordinary episode, and the evidence he has uncovered definitively lay the conspiracy theories to rest.
James Douglas-Hamilton has peopled the pages of this book with the colourful characters he encountered during his long years of public service, including Harold Macmillan, Helen Suzman, Jomo Kenyatta and, of course, the indomitable Margaret Thatcher.