Born into a working-class family in Sheffield, David Blunkett ascended to one of the highest political positions in the country. But his remarkable rise was anything but smooth. The Blunkett Tapes is an intimate diary of his past nine years at the centre of power, unprecedented in its candour and rueful humanity. His story is all the more remarkable for the gritty tenacity that he has demonstrated throughout his life, dealing daily with the challenges of working without sight. With vivid immediacy and characteristic bluntness, David Blunkett chronicles the inside story of New Labour as it has occupied the corridors of power, and as he progressed from Education and Employment Secretary to Home Secretary, eventually finishing his front-bench career as Secretary of State for Work and Pensions. Never before has David Blunkett written about his relationships with key Cabinet colleagues in the hurly-burly of day-to-day politics, the challenge of developing policy and bringing about lasting change. Woven into the diary entries are Blunkett's personal reflections, as unflinchingly frank as they are incisive.
Rarely does a politician so willingly admit where he went wrong, what he should have done better, and the unforeseen twists which affected his professional and private life. From the blistering confidence of New Labour's early days as they burst jubilantly on to the scene in 1997, through the troubled years that led to his two resignations, The Blunkett Tapes is the compulsively readable journey of one of the most fascinating politicians of our time.