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“Never explain, never apologise”: how the Bank of England’s tussles with the treasury have shaped 300 years of British economics

David Kynaston's Till Time's Last Sand reveals how the Bank's relationship with government—from the gold standard to the Crash—have shaped the nation's economy since 1694

By Robert Skidelsky   October 2017

Interfering politicians: William Pitt assaults the Bank's virtue, as depicted by Gillray in 1797.

David Kynaston is a wonderful social historian, with three massive volumes on post-war Britain and many others to his name. He has been a leading practitioner of “history from below,” reflecting the experiences of ordinary people. He has now turned to telling the story of one of Britain’s most powerful and mysterious institutions—the Bank of England, from its founding in 1694 up to 2013.

He faced a number of challenges. Anyone writing an official history…

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