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New biography of Lloyd George to be launched on 26 June

June 22, 2010 10:10 PM

Jones book coverDavid Lloyd George was a Liberal leader in a coalition government of Liberals and Conservatives. He was a radical Welsh nationalist, advocating 'home rule' for Wales. He was the master pragmatist, always believing that getting things done was preferable to opposing from the sidelines. These are highly contemporary themes for Liberalism and for Wales with the post-election Conservative/Liberal coalition government in Westminster and with the National Assembly firmly established at the heart of Welsh governance and looking set to get more devolved powers. All this makes the publication of a new biography of the Welsh Wizard by Dr J Graham Jones of the National Library of Wales, timely and exciting.

The book, Lloyd George and Welsh Liberalism, is published by the National Library of Wales, and is being launched on Saturday 26 June. The author Dr J Graham Jones is Head of the Welsh Political Archive at the National Library in Aberystwyth. The book will be launched by Dr Jones and Ffion Hague, whose book, The Pain and Privilege: The Women in Lloyd George's Life was published by HarperPress in 2008.

The National Library have described Dr Jones' biography as a 'substantial book, grounded firmly in the unique Lloyd George archives in the custody of the National Library [which] re-evaluates many of the key episodes in his life and political career. These include his dramatic entry into Welsh political life at Blaenau Ffestiniog in February 1886, his role in the 'Cymru Fydd' movement, so abruptly terminated in 1896, his entry into the cabinet in December 1905, the preparation of his all-important 'People's Budget' of 1909 which provoked a major constitutional crisis, and his relationship with the Suffragettes.'

All the major issues of Lloyd George's later political life are also explored and re-evaluated in the book including his contribution to Liberal thinking in the run-up to the 1929 general election, his influence on party policy with the publication of the famous coloured books, as well as his key role in the fall of the Chamberlain government at the time of the Norway debate in in May 1940.

Dr Graham Jones has been the author of numerous scholarly articles about LG and aspects of Welsh political history for the Journal of Liberal History published by the Liberal Democrat History Group and is a member of the Journal's editorial board. He has spent his academic career researching his subject in the Lloyd George archives and other source materials deposited at the National Library of Wales.

There will be lecture by Dr Jones at the National Library at 2.00 p.m on Saturday 26 June 2010, the topic of which will be The Marriage of Lloyd George and Frances Stevenson and the launch of the book will follow. Admission is free but by ticket. Further information can be obtained from Siôn Jobbins, NLW Press Office: 01970 632902 post@llgc.org.uk

Lloyd George and Welsh Liberalism (The National Library of Wales, 2010)

ISBN: 978-1-86225-084-0

Price: £24.99