A BOOK that has been more than four decades in the making has been published after decades of observation and hard work.

Jim Cowan, of Hatherden, has delved into psychological and political theories to print The Britain Potential.

Of interest to anyone concerned about the state the country, the book shows what lies beyond the things, that Jim says, is stifling potential like benefit sanctions, repeated examples of `lessons will be learnt’, zero hours contracts, and “heartless tick box work environments”.

The book opens a door to another side of Britain, that grassroots organisations are “realising far more potential” in Britain.

Using his own experience Jim began thinking he should write the paperback since 1973 when he was working as a community worker.

He said: “You work in depth day in day out with communities and you understand what is happening in the country to people’s lives, in our institutions and how government is actually operating.”

And while working on an estate in South London he noted that there was a community effort to improve the area, without the help of the local authority.

“I thought this is important stuff, all these residents have turned around this estate.”

And as his life went on, both socially and in employment, he not only picked up five social science degrees, but also observed racism in the adoption service and the Brixton Riots, homelessness, addiction, violence and poverty. “As the decades went on this feeling that I had something important to communicate that I wasn’t reading anywhere else just grew and grew.”

By 2014 and having retired Jim decided that he would begin the book.

“I just couldn’t hold back any longer, had no idea where to start because I had a mountain of papers and notebooks.”

Through four versions and 75,000 words in nine chapters Jim believes he has now shared an “important message”.

“I would say I have written the book because the humanity has been draining out of Britain, and where politicians and political parties are currently looking is not the right place to construct something really substantive that addresses where we are as a country.”

He added: “It is presenting a really humanistic take on us as a country realising more potential, its towards a politics that actually supports people’s lives.”

The book is available on Amazon and Waterstones.