Because I found Ned Newitt’s oral history of the General Strike in Leicester I copied it for my 16-year-old history project, even interviewing the same people. When the so-called Central Bureau for Educational Visits and Exchanges asked for proposals I proposed a comparison with the 1936 sit down strikes in Paris and received a bursary aged 17 to study for a month in Paris. When I went to my history interview at Exeter University I had the choice of being interviewed by a Dr Newitt, who I chose, & who turned out to be a cousin of Ned’s. I was given a 2 E’s offer by Exeter which helped greatly take the pressure off, and I made it into Cambridge as a result
(Funnily enough the French sit down strikes were paralleled by the same tactics in Flint, Michigan; so ironically chronicalled in Michael Moore’s film, ‘Roger and Me‘).
Update: I see Ned Newitt’s published a great new book ‘A People’s History of Leicester’. See my review on Amazon.