chapter  5
21 Pages

Michael Palliser

ByJohn W. Young

Michael Palliser was unique among the Private Secretaries to the Prime Minister, later held the highest position in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, serving as Permanent Under-Secretary (PUS) for seven years, in 1975–1982. The task of PS could be a gruelling one, especially for someone like Palliser who was married with three children, the last only a few years old. Within Downing Street itself, Palliser was the primary, but not the only, individual working on foreign policy. Palliser's daily routine was much the same as his predecessors. Another aspect of Palliser's work was to accompany the Prime Minister to meetings, at home and abroad. An intriguing aspect of Palliser's work was the creation of a kind of intelligence-gathering operation inside the Foreign Office so as to discover the likely policies of George Brown, the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, when he became Foreign Secretary in August 1966.