James Naughtie profiles Michael Young, inspirational social reformer and driving force behind a series of enduring British institutions including The Open University.
To mark the Diamond Jubilee, James Naughtie examines the lives and impact of the men and women who have given the second Elizabethan age its character.
James Naughtie looks at the energetic and innovative founder of Which?, the Consumers’ Association and the Open University. A social reformer bursting with ideas, Young challenged conventional thinking and was one of the leading minds behind the 1945 Labour manifesto which helped shape post-war Britain. Along side the Consumers’ Association he set-up a network of advisory bodies and services and his legacy lives on in The Young Foundation which is still working to develop ventures which help the less well off.
The New Elizabethans have been chosen by a panel of leading historians, chaired by Lord (Tony) Hall, Chief Executive of London’s Royal Opera House. The panellists were Dominic Sandbrook, Bamber Gascoigne, Sally Alexander, Jonathan Agar, Maria Misra and Sir Max Hastings. They were asked to choose: “Men and women whose actions during the reign of Elizabeth II have had a significant impact on lives in these islands and/or given the age its character, for better or worse.”
Radio4 have a full list of the public figures included in the series on their website: The New Elizabethans, including podcasts of previously aired programmes.
To listen to the Michael Young podcast click here.