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School of Politics and International Relations

Professor Philip Cowley, Hugh Gaitskell widow criticised Harold Macmillan in letter


Historians have uncovered a letter in which the grieving widow of the Labour leader Hugh Gaitskell accused the Tory prime minister Harold Macmillan of “trying to score an unworthy political point” on the day of her husband’s memorial service. The document has emerged as part of an online Twitter history project, @HaroldsRise, led by academics at the Mile End Institute at Queen Mary. Run by Professor Philip Cowley and Matthew Bailey, it charts Harold Wilson’s ascendancy to the Labour leadership following Gaitskell’s death.
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