Pride And Prejudice

“Prejudice is the child of ignorance.” -William Hazlitt


As I was rushing into the Upper Coffee Lounge of the Students’ Union one lunchtime in 1966, my books clutched to my chest, my way had been barred by another first-year student — one with whom I had exchanged polite nods and a few jokes during philosophy lectures. We had bonded to a certain extent over our simultaneous eye-rolls at some of the more far-fetched philosophical ideas. Continue reading

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The Mucky Duck

A pub can be a magical place.

-Rhys Ifans


If you had strolled into a certain public house in Sheffield one rainy evening in late autumn, 1966, you’d have been confronted with a strange scene — not at all the usual gathering you would have expected to see in The Black Swan, known to all Sheffielders as The Mucky Duck. Continue reading

Fade To Grey

Another reworked chapter of the first book


Saying goodbye is a little like dying.
― Marjane Satrapi


All I can remember of 1968 is greyness. The greyness of the dawn light when I would get up early every Friday to take the early train to Manchester and then on to Liverpool. The grimy greyness of Liverpool itself. The lonely greyness of the small Sheffield flat in which I was spending the rest of my time. The overwhelming greyness of the two clouds hanging over my head. Continue reading

The Taj Mahal

For those who haven’t read my book, an extract.


Bliss it was at that dawn to be alive, but to be young was very heaven.

Wordworth— The Prelude


A week or so after the party, T and I were still warily circling each other, unsure of whether to take our fledgling relationship to the next level. That is, I was the one who was unsure. I found him fascinating and unsettling in equal measure. Amongst other things, he had the kind of looks that could, at the best of times, knock me slightly off-balance. Continue reading