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OU on the BBC: Writing the Century - About our diarists

Updated Wednesday 25th February 2009

Meet the people whose diaries will guide us through the middle of the twentieth century.

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Sir Linton Andrews

Linton's diaries illustrate the period between 1954 and 1958.

Sir Linton Andrews was a well-respected editor of the Yorkshire Post, chairman of the Press Club and numerous societies.

The week looking at his writing provides a fascinating insight into the world of 1950s Britain. Against a backdrop of everyday life, Sir Linton offers a unique and privileged window into many of the major issues of the day.

Among these are the attitude of the press to the royal family, as in the question of Princess Margaret’s intended marriage to a divorced man, and Britain’s invasion of Egypt during the Suez Crisis.

Hazel Wheeler

Hazel's diaries are used to cover the period between 1948 and 1954.

As you'll discover, aspiring writer Hazel Wheeler (nee Taylor) found her attention more consumed with family and personal concerns than the unfolding events on the world stage - more interested in cool relations than the Cold War.

For Hazel, as a shopkeeper’s daughter, the austerity of the period is particularly evident. Rationing is still in place and, even after marriage, Hazel needs to work to supplement the family income.

Her ability to turn her everyday life into fascinating vignettes is highlighted when she is invited into the Woman’s Hour studios to read her account of working as a Christmas casual at the Post Office.



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