I was born on 6th September 1920, in Grays, Essex, the only son to my parents although I gained a sister some seven years later.
I enjoyed my childhood and was made a fuss of by doting aunties Ivy and Grace.
I remember my first holiday when we journeyed by train to a farm owned by a great uncle and on arrival being met at the station where we were put into his motor car and driven with the hood down to the farm in Farnham, Surrey, the sight of cattle at the farm, and being put on the horses backs for rides, childhood memories that stay in ones mind.
When starting school I was allowed to play in the fields near our house together with my friend, there were trees to climb and wildlife to study in the hedgerows. As we grew older we would erect our tents and during the summer months we were able to sleep out in them with the warm nights, we were never lost for something to do or pass time.
On reaching the age of 12 years and feeling very grown up I decided to earn extra pocket money by delivering newspapers, then used the cash to purchase a new bicycle. With this came more freedom with a friend who also was the proud owner of a bicycle, we cycled for miles visiting the seaside and exploring places we had not been before.
At school I was interested in geography, history, science and art, also to a lesser degree, gardening, but, like most children in those days looked forward to reaching the age 14 years when we were able then to leave school and start work.
I found employment with a firm who specialised in decorating. Now I was earning a regular income, my best friend and I enjoyed our free time, especially at weekends when we would hop on a train for London and visit theatres or choose to watch Ice Hockey. This freedom was suddenly curtailed when war with Germany was declared on the 3rd September 1939.