Michael Young (businessman)

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Michael Alan Young is a businessman with a political background. He secretly organised the meetings between the South African government and the leadership of the African National Congress (ANC).


After graduating from the University of York in PPE in 1972,[1] Young started his career in 10 Downing Street, the Prime Minister's office and in the Foreign Office when Edward Heath was Prime Minister.[2] He moved to ARC Ltd and then to its parent Consolidated Gold Fields as Public Affairs Manager where he worked under the Chairman Rudolph Agnew.[2] It was under Agnew that Young organised secret meetings at Mells Park House, a building designed by Edwin Lutyens in Somerset.[2] The meetings were attended by various delegates from the South African government as well as leaders of the ANC such as Thabo Mbeki and Oliver Tambo.[2] The meetings contributed to the end of South Africa's apartheid regime.[2] In 2001 he was appointed OBE for his contribution to human rights.[3]

Young later joined the Liberal Party, standing as the party's candidate for Penrith and The Border at the 1983 General Election, where he came second, and in the same seat in a by-election seven weeks later, when he came within 552 votes of gaining the seat from the Conservatives. He also stood as the Liberal candidate in the 1987 General Election for the Isle of Wight, again coming second.[4]

In 2009 Michael Young was the subject of a Film called Endgame[2] produced by Channel 4, a national Television Network in the United Kingdom.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The end of apartheid - an untold story". Grapevine. Alumni Office, University of York (Spring/Summer 2002): 14–15. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f Briton who helped end South Africa's apartheid The Times, 4 May 2009
  3. ^ The Queen's Birthday Honours BBC News, 15 June 2001
  4. ^ Foy, Henry James (26 January 2010). "The Invisible Man Who Changed the World". Nouse. Retrieved 2 May 2018. 
  5. ^ The 'Real' Michael Young Archived 7 May 2009 at the Wayback Machine.

Further reading[edit]

  • Robert Harvey, The Fall of Apartheid, Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire ; New York : Palgrave, 2001. ISBN 978-0333802472

External links[edit]