Gloucester's biggest selling local book by Cliff Ballinger

A story of life in the 1950's and 60's

Edition 4 is sold out.

You are still welcome to enjoy reading it online. Feel free to download all or any part of it, but please note that it is subject to copyright and no part of it can be reproduced or used for commercial gain. Also this version may not be complete, you would have to buy it to get the full version.

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I dedicate this book to all of my friends, new and old, and some that I have sadly lost touch with. I value them all. They are not many, as I can be difficult to get along with. Those who have made the effort, and have become my friends, have become friends indeed. I would like to name them all but they will know who they are. Anyway, they will be mentioned by name elsewhere in this book. If I have mentioned you by name and we have not seen each other for a long time, please get in touch. If I haven't mentioned you, get in touch, anyway.

Since I wrote this book, one of my oldest friends, Bobby Grant, has died from breast cancer. I write this with great sorrow. I hadn't seen her many times since we were teenagers, but our bond remained. She phoned me just before she died and true to her nature, she was in good spirits. She had settled in Spain, with her husband and family. I think she had a good life, but it was much too short. I wish her well for eternity. I wish her family well, it must be hard without her. I don't know her married name, perhaps somebody might let me know.

Roy Hemming has also gone at the age of 61, leaving his widow and 3 children. Roy features in this book and is on the front cover. He is the one looking to the side, standing between the M and the T on the sign behind him. I had some great times with Roy and I will always remember his laugh and his sense of fun. He was a "great bloke", may he rest in peace and live on through his children.

As the years roll by, more of my friends have passed away. As well as Bobby Grant and Roy Hemmings, we have lost Rose Dewick, John Foster, Kim Hibberd, Lee Murray, Rob Gaulder, Chris Marchant, all gone but not forgotten.


Special thanks to Roy Cambridge who encouraged me to write this book, without him I may never have started it.

Thanks to all of the following for their help in many different ways. Suresh Karadia, Mike Johns, Dido and Sheila Vance, Charlie and Molly Markwick, Carol MacPherson and Pete Lee.

Thanks also to Mark Cole and George Douglas my long suffering Harmonica and Guitar tutors.


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Copyright © 1999 Cliff Ballinger. All rights reserved.