I was born at Forest Gate, London, 13th  July 1933 (which makes me 81!) and lived most of my childhood in nearby Ilford, Essex. My education was basic since being at school in wartime London was more about  avoiding bombs and staying alive than learning. I made up some ground later with evening studies at The City of London College.

Started work with a Shipping Company in the City at aged 15 and stayed until National Service call- up in November 1951. Spent the next two life-changing years in the RAF graduating through four ranks in all aspects of Air Traffic Control. Met my dear wife Arline, in 1952 and became engaged November 1953. Went back to London for nearly two years working for the same Shipping firm but found that landing somewhere to live was near impossible when planning for our future marriage. In 1955 I decided that life had more to offer in Nottingham even though shipping work as unlikely, being so far away from a Port! The employment situation at that time was very good and I quickly got a job at Boots Head Office in their Retail Sales Department, transferring later to Merchandise Control. Whilst making friends in a new company I became involved with the Boots Dramatic Society and “trod the boards” in several productions at the Nottingham Co-Operative Arts Theatre.

Arline and I were married June 2nd 1956 and started with two rooms of a small detached house in West Bridgford. The elderly owner of the house, Mrs Crockett, charged us a fairly low rent in consideration of our helping with the garden and various other jobs around the house. Just over a year later we moved into a Council flat having had our names on the list since our engagement. Three years later, with a second daughter due to arrive, we were offered the chance to purchase the house where we first lived and although it was very hard going we managed to get a mortgage. We had two more children, both boys, and one larger House whilst living in Nottingham. 

After seven happy years working for Boots it was time to find a job with more money which resulted in embarking on a late career with Lloyds Bank in 1963. Promoted to
Chief Cashier at Derby, Irongate, in 1976 and remained at that post until retirement in 1990. At the start of this period the volume of cash handling was about reaching maximum with most people paid and trading in cash. Over the years salaries and wages were paid into bank accounts and the use of cheque books took the place of cash, hence the massive reduction in bank counter positions. Plastic has since taken the place of cheques but that is another story.

In retirement I served for 20 years as Hon. Treasurer for Derbyshire Appeals Committee in aid of Portland College (for people with disabilities) and 15 years as Chairman of the Patient Participation Group at Meadowfields Surgery, Chellaston.

A mixture of old age and Parkinson’s has somewhat reversed my Charity roles!