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†††† Teenager of 1960 to Parent in 1970

1960-1963 growing up

By leaving St Columbus, I had to go to a non catholic school called Sale Moor Secondary, and you were taken to

and from school by coach.I had to make new friends which was easy because we were all new on the estate, but we

were treated like second class people at the school( looking back I never settled, also it happened in my adolescent years).

My times in classes here are a blur.I kept missing the bus so I did not after go in.My mother used to chase me

around the house in a fit of temper but it was worth it.I think the only good lesson I liked was the gardening class.

Although going off my first year exam on the subject I was pathetic.One question was, what is a annual and I answered

that it was like a book that comes out once a year.A Annual is a plant grown for one year.Funnily enough what got

me into gardening was simply that we now had a garden, and my dad went back to Brooklands to get his Dahlias and

Chrysanthemums.I went with him on the train, which then ran from Partington.

I had started putting soap and water on my hair to keep my quive in place, it worked but one funny incident which

occurred on the school bus one morning.It rained on the way to the bus, when I sat on bus bubbles came off my hair.

I started using my dads Brylcream after this.

On a other occasion a girl told me I had egg on my chin, at first I did not understand, then I realised she meant my

birth mark on my left cheek, which then was big and brown.This girl later became my first

love.Her name was Margaret Morton.We lasted about a year.I think we met at my 13th birthday party at my house.

On this night my youngest brother Peter woke up and the girls loved him, he was about 1yr old.

PS now Jan 2000and some bad news about a plane crash with British oil workers going back after the X/mas and new year

break.One of the dead is a Ray Parfitt who Married Margaret Morton.I was just wondering how her life has turned


I had a paper round, which I did after school, and on Sunday morning.I remember Friday nights were the worst,

because the papers were so thick, the bags were very heavy.There was two night papers then, The Evening News and

The Evening Chronicle I worked for Murdeys paper shop and they were good people.

Incidentally I met my future girlfriend and later wife Glen, doing her paper round.I did not know her at

all then.

This was a time of being young and learning.I was now into pop music.My first idol that got me interested was

a new star, Del Shannon, his first big hit was:

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Runaway.

I somehow bought a portable record deck.The pop music could only be heard on radio Luxembourg.

There were two pop papers going then Musical Express, which I bought, and Melody Maker.These gave you the

charts and all pop information.

†††††††††††† I started courting girls but it was no big deal at this time.I would have more fun with the such has Colin Heald,

Ricky Walsh, and Keith Dunker who turned out to be my best friend.

These years tend to get mixed up in my mind so they may not be in order, so I will just write things as they come

in my mind:

An act of violence occurred about this time.Me and a friend were riding pass some flats just being built, when we

got some abuse from the local gang, my mate gave them the v sign.I told him I was worried about it.A Couple of days

later after getting off the school bus went into a shop, when I came the gang surrounded me, and gave me a good kicking.

I was with a mate whoís name I canít remember, and he left me on my own, fortunately only my pride was hurt.


This mate died very young, he had a weak heart from birth.My mother took me round the streets until we found the

gang and she gave them a talking to


Two of the gang I later had to work with.Dave Lord who turn into a right rogue but is now a decent bloke

Living on Hattersley.Who also tragically had a cot death?And Dave Tuber who was a big coloured lad, and was Dave

Lords right hand man.He turned out to be a very nice lad with an infectious laugh.He went to London in the hippy

days and overdosed on drugs.

One day on the banks of the ship canal.We were in a group of boys and girls, on a sunny day, when this older lad

and a young boy arrived and stripped down to trunks and then swam in the ship canal.The ship canal is black with oil

and definitely a no swimming zone.Of course we all laughed at them.A bit later this lad came over the bank and

jumped on asking me what I was laughing, he became a friend after that , he was a bit wild, his dream was to go to

prison and escape.I canítremember this lads name but he was older than me, one incident I remember him doing was:

We were going to the gas works xmas do and it was ticket only and I did not have a ticket, he went upto someone and manage

to tear off half a ticket and it got me in.

One bit of fun we did then was swinging on rope tied to a tree.One swing was across the local brook, which was

quite wide.The worst part was if you were the first on the rope when all the others dived on the rope, because you were

on bottom you eventually had to drop into the water.On one occasion, on a swing that was from a tree that did not go

over the brook but swung outwards and back again, I was swinging out and at its furthest point I some how let go of the

rope and flew threw the air and right between two tree trunks, I was very lucky that day.






Another lucky escape involved a 6th sense.There was an old farmhouse that we use to demolish:

One day I was inside the house knocking down the chimney breast, when I just turned and jumped threw the

open window, as I got out the whole ceiling fell down.I never heard nothing, It was just instinct.

On several occasions I went over the brook via the swing to steal potatoes from the farmers field.

Another accident that happened was when me and Brian were fencing with mettle fire pokers, Brian stabbed me

in the right wrist, making a slight hole.I still have a small black scar today.

†††††††††††† One bit of mischief we did, was around bonfire night we pinched the wooden gate off garden drives for the bonfire.

I remember about now we used to wear Jeans, one trick we did was put them on and sit in a bath of cold

water to shrink them

About this time, I had a incident with the police:

One night we were out in a gang of lads and a couple of girls, on the way home one of the older lads started larking

about with one of the girls, I was only a witness to what I thought was horse play.The night after when I got home from

school their was a policeman sat with my mother, who was very upset.The policeman told me the girl had made a

complaint of assault.At first I would say nothing thinking I would get my mate in trouble.The policeman pointed out

that I was a witness, but if I said nothing it was possible that someone else could Implicate me.So to protect myself I had

to tell what I saw which was not very much.The lad was sent down.I still think that it was just lads fun that went to far.

But maybe I am naive.The girl was called Margaret Price and I got to know her well after.She was glad I spoke up.

1962-1963 work

About this time I was 15yrs old, so I had to go to work.I had no real education, so my career teacher suggested I

go into Horticulture (gardening) and got me a interview with:

Manchester parks dept at Carrington Moss Nurseries.

I put on my best togs and cycled to my interview.I was met, on the way in by a man in working clothes, who said

he was the Forman and that the boss was out (so much for appointments) he said he only had the power to employ me on

a casual basis (they used students to work casual during their term breaks) so like a dummy I accepted, my rate of pay

would be: 2 pounds 10shillings.After a couple of weeks I told the only apprentice John Davis that I had wanted to start

as a apprentice, he told the boss Mr Rennet who grudgingly took me on permanently, with a increase of pay to 3 pounds

10shillings, and apprenticeship endorsement, which made it official with the council and meant I would have to:

Go to college one day a week.

Keep a Horticultural Diary.

And every year move around the parks.

Although it was very hard work and was treated terribly, I learnt more at Carrington Moss thananywhere else.

I used my pushbike to get to work.Until I started college when I got a scooter.

†††††††††† I started college at Brooklands Tech College, funnily right next to the ponds I used to fish.

A friend at college Phil Greswell told me there was a scooter for sale in his street in Urmston, so I went.I had

never driven anything before, so when I was buying it the seller said he would ride me around the block the bike was OK

the seller said I must pay before I drove it.I paid him, and he showed me thecontrols, then I had a go, I pulled in the

clutch put it in gear let the clutch out to fast and gave to much throttle, and consequently crashed.The scooter would not

start again.I had to arrange with a friend of my dads, Joe McKenna, who was a D.I.Y mechanic, to pick the scooter up

and fix it.He took ages because he stripped it all down just for the fun of it.When I finally got it back I soon learnt how

to drive it.I stuck two eyes on the front.I wanted to put loads of chrome lights on like all the MODís did but could not

afford them.

†††††††††††† The make of the scooter was N.S.U.

†††††††††† On another occasion I had my scooter stolen from outside the house.When it was recovered a lad was arrested.

I had to go to court has a witness.The lad pleaded guilty so I was not used, the lad was sent down.

after the case I went to a pub with the lads Dad and another witness.The lads Dad was very upset, especially as the lad

had just started work, the other witness told him if he could afford it he should buy his lads stamp so there would be no

gap on his card while he was away .

Back to work;

Weekends were good if you had to go in you were your boss and you extra pay.First job at weekends was to scrape

the clinkers out of boilers and then fill them with coke.Then you had to water all the greenhouses and frames.

†††††††††††† One of best memories was watering one greenhouse that had the full length of one side filled with a

lily called:

Lillium Auratum

and when in flower the scent was superb.




PS.I have just been decorating the bathroom and it reminded me how I have decorated all my life.

††††††††††† My Mother taught me, and over the years I have become quite good at it.Perhaps with hindsight this should

have been my career.

At work we had a 10 minuet tea break in the morning, a half hour dinner break, and a 10 min tea break in the

afternoon.I would brew my tea in a brew can and I had lovely cold toast for morning break and sandwiches for dinner.

The only problem was my mother used to make my sandwiches and put my milk for my brew in a medicine bottle.My

mother would ask me what would I like on my sandwiches if I said Banana I would get Banana every day.I would have

to tell my Mam to change the banana and I would get the change every day.Although the medicine bottle was wash out

it always tasted of medicine or taste slightly off milk which it wasnít because in them days we used sterilised milk.

I was now settled in my career.It was very hard gruelling work, and sometimes very frustrating.

I.e. Carrington moss was the main delivery nursery for all Manchesterís stock, mainly trees and shrubs.

On many occasion, because of bad paper work and communication between Mr Rennett the boss and Mr

Pearson the Forman, we might have healed in several thousand hawthorn bushes, that is, we would have had to cut the

rope around each bundle, spread them out in trenches, more often in bad weather.When along came the boss with a

big order for one of the parks.We would have to relift and rebundle again.

Carrington Moss was the main supplier of plants, from our own bedding plants, trees and shrubs that were

ordered from commercial nurseries every year, trees and shrubs that were grown in big half beer barrel tubs that were

used for the city centre.The moss was a large area, on good peat land.It had a very large stock of trees and shrubs

that were planted in rows and were established.There were also about 10 large greenhouses all fitted up with hot water

pipes, water mist sprays etc.It also had a old steam soil steriliser.

Our mess hall was a run down shack, with a primitive coal stove in the middle.

The work was very hard, and always busy.In late spring we did all the pricking out of bedding plants.

†††††††††††† There was that many we used casual labour.In the autumn we took geranium cuttings by the thousand, they

were delivered in trucks, from the parks where they had been lifted.

Carrington also had acres of fields for turnip and mangles which were for the farms around the areas animals,

also grown was hay which we used too have to lift when baled.

Two serious incidents occurred:

One day me and Johnny Holland were working on the steriliser, which was a tall rocket shaped hot water boiler

which was heated with coke, which we fed in to the fire door, when the temperature was at a high reading, we had to

release steam into two box containers filled with soil, the steam rose up through the soil and sterilised it, the smell was

wonderful.After a certain length of time you put the soil in a wheelbarrow and pushed it up planks into a large shed,

then you put lime on it.This soil was later used to make John Innes mixís for potting or pricking out.

One job on the steriliser was to keep you eye on the glass water level for air bubbles, which you could release by a

valve.On this day Johnny did something to the air valve that caused a problem (we were working through the dinner

break, so there was no one to help us) the next thing we knew was the boiler blowing up with flames gushing out of the

fire door.No one was hurt, the boss was not very pleased.He had a new electric steriliser installed, which was not as


On another day I was using the soil mixer, which was a electric machine with rotary blades inside.You put your

soiland fertiliser mix through a opening in the side and the shredder through the mix out the front.I stopped shovelling

to brush soil off the top of the shredder and got thrown across the room by a electric shock.The boss came out and just

laughed it off.

The highlight of the year was to do the Platt fields show.Only the best apprentices went with Mr Rennett who

did the lord Mayors tent every year.I was chosen and it was fantastic.Mr Rennett was a tyrant, but he certainly knew

how to put on a display.One clever trick was to bury a full tray of bedding plants in peat borders to give a full colour


I had to keep a diary mainly the plants I worked with, by naming their common name and their generic name

(Latin) won a book for my diary in my second year.I wish now I had kept them.

I started day release at Brooklands Tech College.I met lads from other parks and was a good social course.

†††††††††††† In my second year I met a lad from the university of Manchester Botanical gardens we became good friends and

a important part in my life then.His name was Bill Whipday he had very long Rolling Stones hair was already married

with a child on the way, I took to him straight away.I remember we had to do a essay, and he did one on drugs and was

very explicit, the teacher was absolutely shocked.

We used to enjoy our dinnertime by then.We went to a chippy then into a pub where I had a brown split ( brown

ale and half of bitter ) the only problem was it was very heavy and made you tired in the afternoon.By now we had to

stay on at night for a extra lesson which was boring it was on a side of

Horticulture we probable would never do.







Note.A lot of whatís to come involves the next couple of years:

††††††† work and social life


1963 1966.This part of my diary is where my life changed completely:

My leisure time was just as busy, I was never in.

Two very important events occurred that affected our lives.

Radio Caroline came on air.This was a commercial radio station that transmitted off a ship in the British

Channel just out of reach of the law. It was to change British radio forever.B.B.C radio was so outdated.

Me and my mates used to go over to Caddishead, either by the toll ferry ( a rowing boat sculled across by a

ferryman), or by the illegal crossing of the railway bridge.We went to a cafe that had a juke box that played the latest

pop records.We also went over to the fair.The fair also came to Partington.We did not go to the fair for the rides, but

to listen to the pop records.The favourite fairground record then were:

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Nut Cracker Suite.By B.Bumble and The Stingers.

Rocking Goose.††††† By Johnny and The Hurricanes†††††††††††

Although I worked very hard, I still had a busy social life.Me and my mates were at this moment content to be

not courting.

14 JULY 1963

A new youth club opened up in Partington at a mission hall at the beginning of the new estate on Wood lane.We

decided to give it a go.They had a DJ playing pop records; the place was packed, especially with girls.The Ladís said

it was time we found a girl, I was egged on to ask a particular girl who had caught my eye, the girl was dancing with

another girl I knew neither of them, so I cockily walked up to the two girls and asked the one I fancied if I could walk

her home, she said yes, and I went back to my mates.They never bothered to chat to any girlís at all; I think they set me

up.†† I walked this girl home to her gate, she lived on the old estate, and her name was Glennis Lloyd.I arranged to see

her again.

Her full name is Glennis Yvonne Lloyd.Her parents were divorced and she lived with her mother Lillian (Lloyd)

Thompson and stepfather Dennis Thompson, who was a alcoholic and a thug.I called her Glen.

Glen worked in Manchester, as a National Cash Register operator for a catalogue company called Marshall Ward.

15 JULY 1963

Asked Glennis to go out with me.She said yes.






That many things happened at this time that I can only relate them as they come in my head:

I eventually left Carrington to go to Fog Lane park, which was a other stepping stone in my life.You had to do a

year ateach park but all the things I did at Fog Lane it seems so much longer.In the park you mainly cut grass edges

with special edging tools.Every Friday you had to mark out any football pitches, to be used on Saturday, with sawdust

and lime.

The main job at Fog Lane was the planting up of the new over spill estate of Hattersley and Hadfield.(Two new

over spill estates).

We planted the trees that you see now and the hedges in the gardens.

At his time was the terrible news on Hattersley of the moors murders which astounded the nation.Mainly

because it involved the abuse and murder of children.Ian Brady and Myra Hindley caused the Atrocities.They were

sent down for life.One of the close accomplice and star witness was a David Smith.I once saw Smith who shopped Brady,

he was a tall scruffy young man.I donít believe he was as innocent has he said.

PS now 25thJan 2000, Hindley as for many years tried to appeal to be released because she reckons

she has done her time, fortunately the home secretaryís would not allow her, even when she went to the†† European right appeal to no avail thankfully. She has just had a major operation for a brain tumour, which I think, is a disgrace because of ordinary people are struggling for operations.

We were taken to the estate for our work by landrover.The trees and shrubs etc came in a large wagon.One

day the wagon broke down and had to be towed back, I was designated to go under the front of the wagon and tie on a

rope.We towed the wagon back to the park.Afterwards it was found that on top of the breakdown, I had tied the rope

around the steering arm and bent it, the boss was not pleased.

Whilst at Fog Lane I was seconded to Heaton Parks engineering dept, to learn something of the working parts of

mechanical apparatus used in the parks.I suppose somehow I learnt something about engines etc.

Other jobs we did were, old folks homes gardens.The verges along Kingsway.Bulb planting.

While I was at Fog Lane we were asked if we would like to work weekends at a millionaires house.

††††††††††† I Decided to try it.The millionaire was a Mr Raffles.When you came in the driveway to the house you could†††††††††

not miss all the bales of peat stacked up against a wall.The peat was literally spread every year over the gardens, so in fact the ground was several inches deep in peat all over the gardens.The weeding was really easy.

One incident I remember was losing my wallet with my wages in.At first I thought someone had stolethem.I

went home and tried to think where I last had my wallet.The only thing I could think of was when we played football at dinner, so first thing on arrival at work was to go and look where we played football, and I found my wages at the goal post spot.

Whilst at Fog Lane the lads finally got me into smoking Cigarettes.I Donít know why, I started on a

brand called:


A colleague I worked with whose name I cannot remember, got me interested in going to a folk and jazz club

behind the cathedral in Manchester, called the MSG.

Whilst working at Fog Lane a friend called Arthur Gasselle introduced me to a rising singer called

Bob Dylan.We went to a record shop and listened to him in a booth I was aghast.My first impression was of horror

at the voice.I soon came round to understanding what he was about and his voice grew on me, in fact I now think the

voice makes the song and meaning, i.e. Hard Rains Gonna Fall, because of the time it was wrote, when the Russian

leader Kruschev was moving his military sites to Cuba, and the American president John F Kennedy told him to

retreat or else, creating a serious threat to a nuclear war.Thatís what hard rain is, missiles falling.Dylan thought like

us all that this was the end so put together all his unfinished music into rhyme, to create his last song on the L.P

Freewheeling.Fortunately the Russia backed off.†† And the feeling it was sung by Dylan in comparison to the very good

version by Roxy Music, means more to me.



















On a melancholy note: Click here for song: Bob Dylan's Dream

(Concerning the friends I have had, Bob Dylanís Dream, seems to make sense what ever generation.)

††††††††† Some verses from his song.


Whilst riding on a train going west,

I fell asleep, thought I would take my rest.

I dreamed a dream that made me sad,

Concerning myself and the first few friends I had.


Now it had there by, has I stared into the room,

Where my friends and I had spent many a afternoon.

Laughing and a talking about the world outside.


Now many a year has passed and gone,

And many a war has been fought and won,

And many a road travelled my first friends,

And each one I have never seen again.


A thousand dollars Iíve won at the toss of a hat,

Iíd give it all back gladly,

If our lives could be like that.


Now I wish, I wish in vain,

That I could sit in that room again.

Laughing and a talking about the world outside.



†††††††††††† I was still using my scooter.

My scooter lasted me for a long time.I once got a puncture in the rear tyre, and unfortunately my spare was flatthis was just passed Sale and because the weight of the engine was on the back wheel I had to lift the rear up and then push this was very difficult especially as I had to

go many miles to a garage in Partington.


The only other problem was I had it serviced just before my driving test.When I got I back everything was different and I found it hard to control,

Consequently I failed my test, also I was immature in the ways of the highway code.

†††††††††† By now my best mate Keith Dunker had got himself a girlfriend.Her name was Norma Wilcox.Coincidentally

she lived two doors a way from Glen.

†††††††††† Hereís a story you will not believe.Me and Keith Glen and Norma went fishing on the canal at Lymn.We never

caught a thing so I decided to pack up Keith was swing his fishing line through the water out of boredom and he came

out with a fish

†††††††††† My dad was a member of the Working Menís Club.He asked me if I would be interested in running a youth club

at the Workers.I agreed but I was completely green.Enthusiasm is a great motivation and I

soon had a committee and a youth club running.We sold soft drinks which I had specially delivered, the club did

not like that because we made all the profit.I Learnt how to book live groups by getting a letter of confirmation

that they would appear.We had some fab groups and some poor ones.

†††††††††††† I took on a correspondence course for my R.H.S.(Royal Horticultural Society) which was very difficult and

expensive.Some nights Glen had to sit with me in the kitchen while I did the course.I finally got R.H.S.2nd class.

I also got my Certificated gardener.(Practical and theory).At college I was now studying for City and Guilds

which was very hard because it covered more technical areas.I.e.Botany.

I did finally get City and Guilds grade 2.

†††††††††† On the night of my exam for City and Guilds, I booked a group for the club who were getting to be well known

they cost me a bit more than usual but it was a special night.I was upset I could not be there.The group was


†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Hermanís Hermits.

Glen said they were brilliant.I tried to book them again but they got a big hit in the charts and were too expensive.

The club was doing well.But there was dissent from adult committee



The workers finally got rid of the youth club.

†††††††††† The local Labour Club started a youth club.So me Glen and Keith and Norma used to go.They were brilliant

nights out, they had live groups on.The best group they had on and were a regular spot were the Factotums and they

always finished there act with the lights down, with a song called Fever.This became me and Glens personnel favourite.††

†††††††††† About this time my Dad bought a car.It was a Ford Poplar. H e had lessons with his friend Joe Mckenna, but

he was not very good.Somehow I talked my Dad into letting Keith borrow it , because he had just passed his test.

We used to go out on a Sunday, we went to Alton Towers, Pickmere, and the Lake district.

†††††††††† 5 August 1963.

†††††††††††† The Beatles were just becoming famous.The Beatles were appearing at Urmston.We got ticket for the show

and me, Glen, Keith and his latest girl went.The supporting group was Brian Poole and The Tremeloes.††

†††††††††† Glen and me went to watch Del Shannon at the Apollo Ardwick on my scooter.What a show.

†††††††††††† I decided to make a pond in the garden.So I dug out the shape, and made the pond out of concrete, I ran out of

cement, so I went to a building site on the estate, and ask a worker if there was a chance for a bag of cement I got some,

although I felt cheeky.When the pond was complete I had to cover the concrete with a sealing solution.I had made two

shelves with lips to hold soil for the oxygenaters.The pond really was good and I was quite pleased.I ordered my fish,

lily, and oxygenaters from Penningtons shop.When they came in me and Glen went and picked them up in a large

plastic bag and carried them home.The fish contained some Orf and some large Fantails.I lost the fantails to cats, but

the Orf did well and even laid eggs in the oxygenaters.

†††††††††† Glen and me kept breaking up because she had trouble at home, especially with her stepfather.Some times Glen

went up to Billingham, Middlesborough, to her sister Anneís.I went up once for the weekend.I got to meet Harold,

Anneís husband who was a steel erector and travelled all over the country.We got on well.

4 September 1963.

†††††††††† Katherine and Peter went in hospital to have their tonsils out.

7 September 1963.

†††††††††† Katherine and Peter came home today.

28 September 1963.

†††††††††† Went to pictures to see IT HAPPENED AT THE WORLDS FAIR starring ELVIS PRESLEY.

20 October 1963.

†††††††††† Glen and I decided to get engaged on her birthday 21st December 1963.On the 16th November 1963 I bought

a engagement ring so we are now engaged.

22 November 1963.

†††††††††† President John F Kennedy was assassinated today.

†††††††††† The whole world is in shock he was a young, great, president most famous for standing up against Kruschev the

Russian dictator who was trying to set up military installations in Cuba.Until Kennedy gave him an ultimatum.The

threat of a nuclear war was pushed to the limit, fortunately Kruschev gave in.

†††††††††† Incidentally Bob Dylanís HARD RAINS GONNA F ALL was all Dylanís bits of his unused material put together

because he thought like us all that this was the end, the chorus Hard Rain Is Gonna Fall refers to the missiles falling.

††††††††††††††† The workers finally got rid of the youth club.

†††††††††† The local Labour Club started a youth club.So me Glen and Keith and Norma used to go.They were brilliant

nights out, they had live groups on.The best group they had on and were a regular spot were the Factotums and they

always finished there act with the lights down, with a song called Fever.This became me and Glens personnel favourite.††

†† †††††††



†††††††††† Me and Glen decided to get engaged, we had a small party at Normaís house



The Ring


†† 2/6 from


†† Woollys






†††††††††† Not long after Glen had a lot of trouble at home with Dennis, and could not take any more of his violence.So I asked my parents if she could stay at our house.They agreed.Looking back it must have been a hard decision.


slept in the back room with Cath, and I slept in the front room with Brian and Peter.I was now approaching 18 yrs so I asked my parents if we could get married, my dad said we were to young, so we all agreed to wait till I was 19.So we started making plans.Our first piece of furniture was a stereo gram, which I bought on HHH.P.

We were having fun being MODís, which was what people called the new generation.We bought clothes from the army and navy store.We also sown buttons and tasselís on our jeans, on some jeans we frayed the bottoms. I think deep down I wanted to be a rocker, who were the greasy hair and leather gear generation who also rode motorbikes.In them days there was a lot of MODís and rocker fights in the seaside resorts, but we never got involved.

†††††††††† Also in Manchester were the big clubs and the drug scene, again we never got into drugs, although now I wish I

had tried pot.

†††††††††† The club by now was finished because of the petty adults.There really was no where to go now.But we were

growing up and were now drinking under age.Glenís favourite drink then was Vodka and lime (and mine).We used to go into Sale at weekends.On Sunday dinner Keith and me would go to the Greyhound the local pub.More often than not I would need to have a tomato juice, although our old gentleman friend Bob always said you should take a pint for the hare of the dog.We would go in on the Sunday dinner with a pound note and put a 10 bob note in our top pocket for the rest of the week.

†††††††††† I cannot recall were we stored our bits of furniture.But we bought a old mettle based double bed off a old lady,

we bought some chairs etc off a colleague of Glens called Terry who was emigrating to New Zealand.

†††††††††† We did not get much financial help with the wedding but we had help and support.I went to meet Glens true

Father who lived with his Mother in Brooklands.I found him to be a very friendly and upright army type, who I got

on well with.He was a mind of information and was proud of his war record.On the other hand my Father, because

of his strict religious views made the condition that Glen changed her faith to become a Catholic.Which she agreed, and


August of 1966

††††††††† I was transferred from Fog Lane to Wythenshaw Park.This was supposed to be the elite place to learn.I was

under a man in charge of the heather gardens.For some unknown reason he had something against me, I think it was

because I came originally from Carrington Moss.He kept telling other lads not to work with me because I was lazy.

(Any one who came from Carrington Moss would not know how to be lazy).

†††††††††† Incidentally while I was at Wythenshaw Park, Carrington Moss was to be closed and Wythenshaw Park was to

be the main supplier for the parks.Sad.

†††††††††† Just before I got married Bill Whipday told me there was vacancies at the University Botanical Grounds.It was

slightly better pay, so I applied and got the job.My great pleasure was in telling this bloke in charge of me at Wythenshaw Park on the last Friday that I would not be in on the Monday, his face was a picture.

†††††††††††† We decided to live in a place of our own when we got married.So we looked for accommodation which we found in Crumpsall.I donít know why we chose to live so far from our families.The flat was on the top floor of a large old house:

†††††††††††††† Rectory Rd, Crumpsall.

†††††††††† The wedding took place at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church Partington on October 1st 1966.It was a white

wedding, Glens wedding dress, and the bridesmaids dresses, were all handmade and were excellent.We were married

on the alter, which was extraordinary, by the priest Father Pennington.

†††††††††† All the familyís and all our friends were invited (except of course Dennis) and they all came.The day was a

typical cold wet October day.But it did turn out sunny has we came out of Church, to add to a excellent occasion.

We held the reception in the Workings Menís Club.And later on all night in the Workers.Sometime in the night

we had to get on stage and sing with the compare, the song was making Whoopee, but I did not know the lines, and made a fool of myself.We could not afford a honeymoon, so someone drove us home to Crumpsall.I invited Bill Whipday and his wife Angela around to the flat the following day after the wedding.How romantic!We became good friends with Bill and Angela.They lived in a rented terraced house in Bradford, Manchester.

†††††††††† One morning Glen woke me up at 2am, to ask me who got up at that time to ring the clock bells, which were just


†††††††††††† We both had to use the train to Manchester to go to work.I then had to get a bus to Fallowfield.near the place I now worked was a new building for the university called the toast rack because its roof as got several hoops on.I worked just around the corner, at the university experimental grounds.We called it the Firs.The work was very different and easier mainly watering potting up and looking after the Vice Chancellors gardens The boss was called Mr Flannagan and in my opinion not a very clever gardener.The main plants grown were seedlings grown under lights and were experimental.We were never informed of the reasons.The main attraction for me that I had never experienced before was the quite large tropical house.

††††††† Another pal Bill brought to work with us was a lad called Dave Thornhill.He became another close friend at that time.He was a small lad, single and plenty of money.He loved to gamble on the horses.He got me into betting I

would bet small money each way on names of horses that had familiar names, like Glensomthing, one in particular, we had a cat called Toby, so I put a each way bet on Toby Jug and it won. Dave was very lucky he came into work one day and said he had put 5 pounds each way on a horse called Farm Walk, that was a lot of money then, we said he was mad anyway it won.It came in at 10 to 1.On another occasion Dave said he had put 10 pounds to win on a horse called

Boismoss, it again won at 12 to 1.

†††††††††† Dave also reintroduced me to Manchester City, Who I have always supported.We started going to all the home

matches.We went in the seats at Platt Lane.The club had just got a new Manager with Joe Mercer and a new coach

Malcolm Allison.The team was mainly new youngsters, like Colin Bell from Bury.And the old man Tony Book from Bath who in my opinion was the best player considering his age of 32yrs.The style played was with two wingers, which created a exciting game with plenty of goals.I went to Main Rd for 2yrs.


1967 season was the best when we won the league title.

SEASON 1967-1968

The team was

Harry Dowd + Joe Corrigan (goals)

Tony Book ††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††Glyn Pardoe

George Heslop

†††††††††† Alan Oakes†††††††††††††††††††††† Tony Coleman†††††††††††††††††††††††† Mike Doyle


†† Mike Summerbee††††††††††††† Colin Bell ††††††Neil Young†††††††††††††††††††††† Francis lee


The two most memorial matches that season were:

A game at Main Rd against Tottenham Hotspurs on a snow covered, frozen pitch, which we thought would be cancelled.

The Blues were brilliant winning City 5.Tottenham 1.In the papers in the morning the headlines were Babes on ice.

The last game of the season was at Newcastle and we had to win, because Manchester United were at home to Sunderland

and were favourites to win, which would have won them the league,

Our game was end to end stuff we got a goal they got a goal, nerves.We won.United got beat.

†††††††††† This was a time of being very selfish, probably because I did not know better and being in a mans world.I

Started going out on a Friday night with Bill and Dave and a few others.We went down town had to many beers.( in them days you buy many different keg beers, one we drank was called Red Barrel, ) Afterwards we all went to a Indian

restaurant called the Taj Mahal, I always had chicken curry.

†††††††††††† On Saturdays I would go to Main Rd with Dave to watch City.We would first put a bet on at the bookies.

†††††††† They say you cannot remember things after you get drunk, well I remember every embarrassing event the first

time I got drunk which was at my first Christmas at the firs.They always had a collection for drinks for the Xmas do, I got carried away and mixed my drinks I finished off by taking a bottle of Martini on my way home by bus and train.On the train, I was sat in a compartment with two well-dressed businessmen when I started feeling sick I try to put my hand over my mouth but to no avail.I got home spent some time in the loo, then went to bed, the next thing I remember was Glen and Angela waking me up and being extremely annoyed because I should have met her at Bills.I then had to get sorted and go to Bills.

†††††††† Some Sundays we had to work at the firs, so one of the thing we would do was send John our brew boy to the

shops for eggs, bacon, and sausages.We would start a fire and get some roof slates and put the food on the slates to cook.Brilliant.

†††††††††† One day at work the boss asked Dave and me if we would like to go to Leicester to watch city play in a cup

match.We said yes.He had a Zephyr Zodiac, which was a big car.I cannot remember the result but I remember coming home in very thick fog at one point we had to get out and walk in front of the car.

†††††††††† While we were living at the flat I got to know Glens Brother David.He was a tall very thin lad.We had a few

Drinks together, but I got fed up with him always borrowing money especially has we were just as broke.We had a row with him over this and never saw him again for a very long time.

†††††††††† The flat was OK but not very up to date.Also we found it hard to keep up with the rent.So when a House

vacancy came up near Glens Nanna in Moss side we did a moonlight.The house was 3 doors down from Nanna Glover, on Bickley St, Moss Side, Manchester.It was a big two bedroomed, two living roomed house.But really was a slum

and needed a lot doing on it.The toilet was outside and did not have a light.But at that moment it was a home

†††††††††† While I was here Harold was working in Manchester and he stopped at Nanaís house.On the Friday he took me

out I was broke so he put a 10 bob note in my top pocket.I still owe him.

†††††††††† About this period of wedded bliss we went on Holiday for the first time.We went with Ann and Harold, from

their house in Billingham to a camp site up north in Asherton, this was the birthplace of the two famous football

brotherís Bobby and Jack Charlton.I think Ann and Harold then had just the two girls, Gillian and Ann.

†††††††††† The site was inland in a large wood.It had nesting in the woods lots of Wood Pigeonís, Harold said that their

eggs were good to eat, so I climb a tree and took some eggs.When it came to breakfast Harold decided not to have any

Wood Pigeon eggs, so I ate them they were small but excellent.At night me and Harold went to the local pub which

was a couple of miles away, so we would go in the car.Halfway through the week in the pub there was a raffle, which

we won, it was a large tray of meat.The girls were pleased, especially as we were running out of money.

†††††††††† I was still working at the Firs and it was easier to get to I could walk there through Platt Fields Park.

†††††††††† Glen had her first miscarriage.She had to stay in St Maryís Hospital.

†††††††††† Glen got a new job at an electric shop called Flynnes doing secretarial work.

†††††††††† My friend Bill now had a baby boy and was called Warren and another on the way.Due to finances and the

increase in the family Bill did two things he left the firs to work on the buses, and he also moved to Hattersley.

†††††††††† We were still at Bickley St.Bill suggested if we were thinking of starting a family why not go to the town hall

and say Glen was pregnant and apply to be housed on Hattersley.We did and looked at some vacant property on Hattersley.We applied for a flat top flat on Hattersley Road west and got it.We moved in around February 1969.The flat was the top flat of 3 on Hattersley Road west.The flat was very nice, two bedrooms and under floor heating.

I was still at the firs and had to travel to Belle Vue by bus and then get the famous 53 bus to Fallowfield.I was not very happy at the firs because I was overlooked for the temporary post of foreman, the boss stuck to the principle of longest service over my qualifications.Dave Thornhill got it and put a strain on our friendship.

†††††††††† One day whilst I was in charge Glen phoned me up to say that the weather was getting bad with heavy snow, it

was only about dinner time and there was no snow at the firs, any way I phoned the boss up at Jodrell Bank, and he

said to go home.I got the 53 bus to Belle Vue.Got on the Hattersley bus to be informed that it was only going to Hyde

due to the weather conditions, I got off at Hyde and walked it home the conditions were atrocious the

snow was quite thick and was drifting.

†††††††††† Glen had another miscarriage, after which she gave up work.Glen had another miscarriage so our GP Doctor

Tommy decided to put Glen on a course of injections on her next pregnancy, which worked.Glen was again pregnant and doing well.Soon after this I decided to leave the firs.I applied to Stockport Parks Dept and S.H.M.D buses.(S.H.M.D stands for Stalybridge, Hyde, Mossley, and Duckinfield.) I got interviews for both jobs.At the parks I was offered the job to start right away, but the one thing that stopped me was the fact that I had to transfer my

superannuation which (like a idiot now I am looking back I should not have done) I could then redeem it and I needed the money.

March 1969

†††††††††† So I took the job on the buses.At the Interview it was explained that it was expected to work my starred restday

which is your guaranteed sixth day.Also to allow walking time to work in case the bus did not turn up.The rate of

pay was the same as the university £13 10s but with overtime spreadover for split duties and weekend rates you could earn far more.I started.You started has a conductor which did help to get used to the job.The hardest part was learning the stages and fares.The public are a nightmare, there all right when you get know people on a regular route but otherwise they are very awkward and tend to treat you like dirt.

†††††††††† After a while you get a regular driver which is far better because you can work the roads to each ones separate

ways plus if you get on well you can have some fun.My mate was Paul Andrews he was married with 3 children and was a lot older than me.He did tend to lead me astray.Paul liked his pints, many a time during a split duty he would come back on duty to drive the bus for the second half stinking of beer.Paul introduced me to my favourite piece of classical music, which is:

Tchaikovskys 1812 Overture

Paul went into a record shop and had several versions played until he got one that had real cannons on.

†††††††††† I was a conductor for about 10 MThís then I went on driving school because that was the future with o.m.o

driving coming in, (one-man operation).I passed my test first time on 17th December 1969.We went out to celebrate

but I did not inform Glen, so when I got in Glen was lived.I was even more selfish then.

1970 .


This turned out to be a happy, bad, sad, and busy year:

†††††††††† Since Glenís last miscarriage our Doctor Tommy has been giving Glen injections to help her carry a foetus in the

womb.It is now April 1970 and Glen is 9 months pregnant.

APRIL 4TH 1970


Today Glenís waters broke.On 5th April still no labour.

April 6TH 1970.

†††††††††† Today I am a father to a baby girl:

†††††††††† Born at 03.15 in Tameside Hospital, weight 5 lb.5oz, she will be called Karen Jane.Both all right.Phoned my

Mam and Dads neighbour up to give the good news, our Brian answered, told him to tell everyone.(Last time I spoke to Brian).

April 7th 1970.

†††††††††† Saw Karen Jane for first time.6hrs old.Very small.

April 8th 1970.

†††††††††† I have going to pick Glen and Karen up at the hospital to bring them home in a taxi.Arrived home 16.30 hrs.

Glen not very pleased I was the first to take Karen out in the pram.




April 14 Th.1970.

†††††††††† Disaster.The ferry on the canal at Partington, involved in an explosion, our Brian was on it going to work.He

is missing.Mam and Dad under heavy sedation.

April 15th 1970.

†††††††††† Went to Mam and Dads.Awful not knowing if Brian is dead or hurt somewhere although you know deep down

that he could not still be alive.A few did get out of the canal alive.It appears that our Brian and several other workers wanted to over to Caddishead to work, (Brian worked at the steel works and loved it) there was a thick fog on the canal and the ferryman did not like the look of it, so refused to take them over, but because the men wanted to go to work

allowed them to skull across.They got halfway across and started to collapse, the ferryman got in the little motor boat and went to their rescue.(The fog was actually a chemical spillage from a ship unloadingchemicals at petrochemicals further up.No one at that time knew.)Unfortunately a spark from the outboard motor on the ferrymanís boat ignited the chemical fumes causing very high flames, the poor young ferryman was dressed in oilskins so had no chance of surviving.We can only assume that Brian was unconscious and fell into the canal.There will be a inquiry into the disaster.

April 19th 1970

†††††††††† Brianís body found in an inlet of the canal near the Warrington Bridge.My Dad had to identify the body.Dad

said Brian did not seem marked, so maybe he was unconscious when he fell in the water and the fire missed him I hope.

May 1st 1970(Friday)

†††††††††† Brian was buried today.He was well remembered.

†††††††††† In memory of a loving Brother who I was only just getting to know.


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[i]Go to Part Three. My Life by Tony.Bringing up A family 1970 On.