'A good written constitution is more than a car manual. It can tell a story. It can say: "This is what this group of people aspire to be."'
In a year that might well see the beginning of the end of the United Kingdom, one of our foremost historians of national identity came to the shop to provide an analysis of the various Acts of Union that have until now more or less held the country together. In her latest book Acts of Union, Acts of Disunion, published to coincide with a 15-part Radio 4 series, Linda Colley draws on art, architecture and literature as well as political history to ask what Britishness has meant in the past, what it means now, and what it might mean in the future.