From the bestselling author of The Long Weekend: a wild, sad and sometimes hilarious tour of the English country house after the Second World War, when Swinging London collided with aristocratic values.
'Preposterously entertaining' Observer
'Brilliant' Daily Telegraph
'Rollicking' Sunday Times
As the sun set slowly on the British Empire in the years after the Second World War, the nation's stately homes were in crisis. Tottering under the weight of rising taxes and a growing sense that they had no place in twentieth-century Britain, hundreds of ancestral piles were dismantled and demolished.
Yet - perhaps surprisingly - many of these great houses survived, as dukes and duchesses clung desperately to their ancestral seats and tenants' balls gave way to rock concerts, safari parks and day trippers. From the Rolling Stones rocking Longleat to Christine Keeler rocking Cliveden, Noble Ambitions takes us on a lively tour of these crumbling halls of power.
* A Daily Telegraph Book of the Year *
* Longlisted for the William MB Berger Prize for British Art History *