What had brought me over to London was lunch with Neil Kinnock. I wrote his biography and, though we see each other rarely, we have remained friends. It was good to catch up on things. For me, Neil is one of the great figures of the Labour Party and of British politics and British public life more generally. Admirably, he has remained a staunch loyalist and has contented himself with playing the role of a very private eminence grise. He adored his job at the British Council (he insisted on resigning when Glenys was appointed as Minister of European Affairs to avoid any possible accusations of conflicts of interest ). I hope he will not be lost to British public life because he has so much to give. That said, if you asked him what makes his life tick these days he would, I think, unhesitatingly reply ‘the grandchildren’.