They made Great Britain

It was the news that a poll showed an alarming 23% of Britons believed that Winston Churchill was fictional that galvanized Adrian Sykes to write a book on British History told through biographies of people who made it.

They Made Great Britain author Adrian Sykes, in conversation with Stuart Kelly, explained, this book really is to try and remedy the dearth of understanding there often is about British history.

While there are those, Sykes argued, who believe British history is tied to Imperialism, Sykes believes there is much to celebrate within it.

In this, he argues Scots also have much to be proud of within the Union with half the inventions made by Britain being developed by Scots.

He also argued that Scots helped to form and articulate British identity as well to a great degree, running the Empire.

In explaining the large number of military leaders in the book he noted Thomas Cochrane, whose exploits as a Captain in the Royal Navy during the Napoleonic Wars as well as later helping the development of the Chilean, Brazilian and Peruvian fleets though not as well known as his contemporary Nelson.

Some however may take issue with his view his belief that the Empire was essentially good and that for Scots, it was after the Union that Scotland really came of age.

However this was an interesting look through British History and how it could be told through biography.

Jayne Baldwin