Returning to Britain in the mid-1980s after spending several years in the US as the Observer’s Washington correspondent, Robert Chesshyre found a country shockingly altered by the rule of ‘The Iron Lady’, then at the height of her popularity. Disturbed by the Britain he now found himself in, he set out to travel the length and breadth of the UK to report on the state of the nation and the lives of ordinary people.
The parallels between Britain’s predicament in the 1980s and in 2012 have never been so stark, and Chesshyre’s book casts a critical eye on the developments of the 1980s that were to shape ‘Broken Britain’ twenty-five years later: the ever-expanding gap between rich and poor, the boom and deregulation of the markets, the explosion of inner-city crime, and the gulf between north and south.Originally published as The Return of a Native Reporter to widespread critical acclaim in 1987, this new edition includes a piece describing a revisit to the former Easington Colliery in 2010 and an extensive new foreword by the author. In its scope, its relevance and its insight, it is a profound and shocking reminder that ‘what we sowed then, we reap now’.
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