"A deliciously revealing biography." --Mail on Sunday Charming, loyal, promiscuous, and in possession of a truly wicked sense of humour, William Tallon entered royal service at the age of fifteen and became one of the most notorious figures ever to have graced the royal household. Sometimes scandalous, often shocking, and always entertaining, Backstairs Billy is the fascinating life story of the man who spent half a century working in the Queen Mother's household, giving us a rare glimpse of what life in the British royal family is really like. Tom Quinn edits Country Business magazine and writes occasional obituaries for The Times.
When Gerald Grosvenor, 6th Duke of Westminster, died in August 2016 he was the third richest person in Britain and one of the world's wealthiest men, with a fortune of Pounds10 billion. Yet Gerald's wealth caused him, at times, to feel as though he were imprisoned. Tom Quinn recounts the bizarre life of the aristocrat who was the 'reluctant billionaire'.
Author: T. Y. MUNROE
Release Date: 2018-04-26
This book is about William Tallon who was The Queen Mother's Page (Butler). It is not an exposé, but a memoir of working with William at Clarence House by bringing his voice and experiences alive in the way he was, using conversations and events taken from real life. For years as the personal 'Butler' (His ancient job title was Page of the backstairs) to the last Empress of India he enjoyed the high life, drinking Her Majesty's Champagne and cavorting with the guests, paying none or little attention to protocol, either inside or outside palace walls. He loved it! He may have thought he was invincible but of course he was not. He was just a boy from Newcastle. The Press hounded him when Queen Elizabeth died. Not as bad as they hounded Princess Diana but same old thing.'Backstairs Billy' was his nickname created by the Press and used by them ever since. He never gave in, he kept his mouth shut until he died.We go inside Clarence House to join him and his staff over the 100th birthday, and in preparations for a summer trip to Balmoral in Scotland. Then we go with him to serve dinner in the royal box at the ballet at The Royal Opera House.Then we go to Sandringham and eventually back to London in 2002.All this and having to quickly train up a handsome new footman. The new boy is finding it difficult to fit in to such an old fashioned and competitively camp establishment, and as there is no formal training the place is run under its own rules. After all, nobody can tell Queen Elizabeth what to do.Perhaps William's notorious reputation over the years was deserved, as he ran the place on his own terms, but his life suddenly begins to unravel.The book sets out to create a real life time capsule of how it was to work there with William and others, using first hand experience of conversations with William.He worked 50 years but he was not required around Queen Elizabeth for the last few weeks of her life, which tormented him to the last, yet from the adulation to the agony, he would probably love to do the whole thing all over again!
This is the intimate and revealing autobiography of Margaret Rhodes, the first cousin of Queen Elizabeth II and the niece of Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother. Margaret was born into the Scottish aristocracy, into a now almost vanished world of privilege. Royalty often came to stay and her house was run in the style of Downton Abbey. In the Second World War years she 'lodged' at Buckingham Palace while she worked for MI5. She was a bridesmaid at the wedding of her cousin, Princess Elizabeth to Prince Philip. Three years later the King and Queen attended her own wedding; Princess Margaret was a bridesmaid. In 1990 she was appointed as a Lady-in-Waiting to the Queen Mother, acting also as her companion, which she describes in touching detail. In the early months of 2002, she spent as much time as possible with her ailing aunt, and was at her bedside when she died at Easter that year. The next morning she went to Queen Elizabeth's bedroom to pray, and in farewell dropped her a final curtsey. This is an enthralling account of a special life, and a unique insight into the intimate moments of the British Royal family. The Queen Mother regarded Margaret Rhodes as her "third daughter", and she has been extremely close to her cousins the Queen and Princess Margaret throughout their lives. The book is full of charming anecdotes, fascinating characters, and personal photographs and is an unparalleled insight into the private life of the British monarchy.
Author: Dean Palmer
Publisher: The History Press
Release Date: 2015-06-01
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
This is the remarkable story of how the two most powerful women in Britain met and disliked each other on sight. For over a decade they quietly waged a war against each other on both a personal and political stage, disagreeing on key issues including sanctions against South Africa, the Miner’s Strike and allowing US planes to bomb Libya using UK military bases. Elizabeth found the means to snub and undermine her Prime Minister through petty class put downs and a series of press leaks. Margaret attacked her monarch by side-lining her internationally, upstaging her at home and allowing the Murdoch press to crucify the Royal Family. This book is also a window into the 80s, an era when Britain was changed beyond recognition by a woman who made ‘Thatcherism’ the defining word of the decade.
Author: Stephen Birmingham
Publisher: Syracuse University Press
Release Date: 1996
This social history describes the lives of the rich and trendy who have lived at the Dakota, a New York apartment house daringly erected in 1884, too far up and on the wrong side of town. The book covers tenants such as the Gustav Schirmers, Boris Karloff, Judy Holliday and Lauren Bacall.
Author: David Shibley
Publisher: New Leaf Publishing Group
Release Date: 2012
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
Christ's servants today stand on the shoulders of His servants of earlier eras whose lives were often packed with more adventure than the most riveting novel. The profiles in this book will introduce you to the extraordinary lives of Christians who shook the world.
In this wonderful and honest book, former press secretary to the royal family Dickie Arbiter reveals the inner-workings of everyday life in side Buckingham Palace, and what it's really like to be on duty with the Queen. With four decades of experience covering royalty as a journalist and as one of Her Majesty's press secretaries, Dickie Arbiter has had unprecedented access to the inner circle of some of the most intriguing news stories over the years, and is the only royal commentator to have witnessed the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II and covered her Silver, Golden, and Diamond Jubilees. Appointed a press spokesman for Queen Elizabeth II in 1988, Dickie was immediately catapulted into the media circus surrounding the world s most famous and divisive family. From sailing in the Royal Yacht Britannia, escorting Prince Charles on far-flung trips across the globe and the Commonwealth, and joining Her Majesty for washing-up duties following a picnic in Balmoral Castle, to becoming one of Princess Diana s most trusted confidantes before briefing the world's media of her untimely death, Dickie was at the forefront of the decision-making at the Palace during the most turbulent decade in the monarchy's reign. Open, entertaining, enlightening, and surprising, On Duty with the Queen is a wonderful account of a once-in-a-lifetime job and a truly unique service to the crown.
Author: Elizabeth Searle
Release Date: 2017-03-20
Genre: Performing Arts
Soap operas have captured loyal, often lifelong viewers since the first American daytime serial debuted in 1949. In this collection of 29 new and five classic essays and recollections, authors and soap opera insiders delve into the passion for television melodrama that compels viewers to "tune in tomorrow." The contributors include iconic soap star Thorsten Kaye, journalist Leigh Montville, authors Elinor Lipman and Ann Hood, and editors of Soaps in Depth magazine. They explore the soap phenomenon from a range of perspectives and consider the appeal of a venerable genre in which, as novelist Jacquelyn Mitchard observes, "everyone's life was more depressing than mine."
Author: Sophie Campbell
Publisher: Aurum Press
Release Date: 2014-04-01
When travel journalist Sophie Campbell squeezed into heels and a hat to investigate the English social season, she got more than she bargained for. Why, she wondered, were events such as the Chelsea Flower Show, the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, The Derby at Epsom, Royal Ascot, the Henley Royal Regatta, Wimbledon Fortnight and Glorious Goodwood so formal, so fashionable and so famous?
Author: Tom Quinn
Publisher: New Holland Australia(AU)
Release Date: 2012-03-01
Genre: Great Britain
Secret Britain is an exploration of the fascinating and beautiful, yet more obscure and less-visited, corners of the country. Landscapes and heritage sites that receive little coverage in more conventional guides are revealed here in all their glory, and there is a diverse range of locations to suit every mood. Travel from the rugged beaches of Cornwall to the ancient burial sites of the Orkney Islands, and in between encounter an enticing mix of wild hills and spectacular coastlines, ancient castles and stately homes, tiny churches and magnificent abbeys, wide estuaries and hidden valleys, and many other little-known gems that add to the breath-taking landscapes and buildings that make up the heritage of England, Wales and Scotland. Each chapter is accompanied by a lively commentary by Tom Quinn, a full-color map, and Chris Coe's beautiful photography, which captures the unique character of each site. Suggestions for places to stay and nearby attractions are also included.