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Friday October 4, 1974

Up at the unearthly hour of 8.30 in order to tidy the place for Mum, who is expecting a little man round to mend her cooker.

 Sit in the dining room and drain the contents of a full tea-pot. Continue with the biography of Prince Albert Victor, which states in a round-about sort of way that he had several homosexual relationships whilst at Cambridge University in the 1880s. It must really be a blessing that the poor soul never lived to be king.

Much later: everyone to the Hare & Hounds, including Lynn and Christine Dibb. Stay till 9.30, and Dave B arrives with Denny, and he looks positively thrilled when he lays eyes on Lynn. See the photographs from last Saturday which are fantastic. The let down of the evening is when everyone refuses to go to Wikis. I insist that we all should go - Sarah Jane will be there - but they take little notice of me. John invites everyone back to our place, but before the pubs shut we all go to the Yorkshire Rose - a grotty place indeed. Back to Pine Tops where we show Mum the photos. She is almost hysterical. See a terrible film on the BBC which fascinates Chris, him being a Dracula-Frankenstein, Werewolf type. Far too ridiculous for my taste. Dave and Lynn were sitting together all night, which pleased me immensely. Denny and I are in the same chair which proves painful for me in many places. To bed after getting rid of everyone at about 1.0am. Miss not going to Wikis. Poor Sarah Jane.


Thursday October 3, 1974

Busy day but quite pleasant. Go to Leeds library taking my driving licence as a means of identification, and get out a couple of books. One is 'Clarence' by Michael Harrison which incorporates a biography of Prince Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence & Avondale, grandson of Queen Victoria, and 'Jack the Ripper'. Dr Stowell, the man who in 1970 spread the story that the prince was the killer, may have fooled a lot of people but not myself._______.Also get a book on the Prince of Wales.

Home at 6 to find Mum in her bed, a box of chocolates placed between her weak, sickness-ridden knees. Lynn makes eggs and bacon for me, and we discuss her relationship with Dave Baker. I only wish he'd ask her out, propose to her, and eventually marry her, because he's such tremendous fun. He's just the sort of chap I'd like for a brother-in-law.

Read all evening and don't see John, who is at tech till late. Looking forward to the day off tomorrow and the night out with Sarah Jane. (Oh, rang Denny at 8.30 but she's at college. Mrs Akroyd says she'll ring when she comes in). Denny rings at 9 and I say that I will pay her a visit tomorrow afternoon., and she says that Chris may also be going up. Should be fun anyway.



Wednesday October 2, 1974

Terrible day, with no end of rain from morning till night. Get a bit of soaking at 8 whilst leaving for the YP, but Mr Rawnsley picked me up before the deluge had any real effect. However, I did feel the full force of the torrents whilst coming back up the lane tonight.

October is forecast as a bloody awful month. Home at 6 to find Mum is unwell and has spent the afternoon in bed. She looks a bit peaky and has done for the past week.

See 'Carry On Spying' then depart upstairs for a bath. All night I've been desperate for something good to read.

Today I attempted to join Leeds Library but they wouldn't let me have any books until I can prove that I am actually Michael Rhodes. I was unable to do so today. I intend going back tomorrow with my driving licence. John and crowd go out, but I decide not to, due to severe financial difficuties. I'll have some fun tomorrow when Marita and I go for a drink somewhere.

Saw Philip Knowles on the bus. We had a laugh and he gave me information about Christine. One of these days I'll bump into Miss Braithwaite whilst on one of my scrounging trips around the banks in Leeds fair city.

Kathleen says she caught a glimpse of Princess Margaret when she was in London and says she looked shocking. People are always nasty about poor Margaret, but I see nothing wrong with her at all. She's far better than the Duchess of so-called Kent. See in the paper that Prince Andrew's been to France on an exchange holiday, he went round telling people he was from a landowning family, and that his mother was no-working! Her Majesty a non-working person indeed!



Tuesday October 1, 1974

Sick of the YP at the moment, which is far too busy for my liking. Am getting on quite well with the new girl called Eileen (Byram), who is quite a pleasant __, though I found myself working much harder when Mrs Beaumont was sitting at the other side of the table. The Old, or pehaps I should say, Young Witch thought she was Catherine the Great of Russia. Eileen's got far more intellect.

Ring Denny at about 11. We are both having a day off on Oct 4, which should prove amusing. It think I'll taker her the tent back which has been hanging around in one of our out-houses since the Grassington weekend.

Mum is in a rotten mood when I arrive home, and think she doesn't like the idea of working full-time. However, Dad says she had a nasty experience with the bank manager this morning, and this must be a contributing factor to Mama's moody, explosive temper.

If my calculations are correct, the Duchess of Gloucester should have given birth by now. She's not been seen in public since the end of April, and I thought the baby was due at the end of September.

On the subject of gorgeous women, of which the Duchess of Gloucester is one, I'm looking forward to seeing Sarah Jane at Wikis on Friday. Dave B won't let it drop about me taking her off him last week, but I can seriously say she was MINE after about ten minutes of chatting up. Bloody awful boring evening. Help Sue with her homework, then go leap into the bath, purely for the want of something better to do. By the way, saw Judith Rushworth at the bus stop this morning. She's at college after all, and seemed to be in a much better mood than when I last saw her. Dad says that Mrs Rawnsley's been walking around today dressed completely in black, and he suspects a family bereavement.


Monday September 30, 1974

Marita rings for a chat at 6.30. She needs cheering up. Evidently, MM goes to Sheffield tomorrow___________. Poor soul. ____________.She also informed me that Denny is down in the dumps, and is going out for her lunches with a regular escort. Nothing much else occurred in the conversation and it ended after about half an hour.

See TV all evening and nothing except the election is on. Michael Foot and William Whitelaw pulling each other to pieces, &c. However, Mr Whitelaw is a good chap, and I prefer him to Mr Heath, who is far too high minded to appreciate the problems facing Britain at the moment. Politics get me down, but Sir Alec Douglas-Home made a good point at the weekend when he said that politics may be dirty business, but the only alternative is dictatorship. It's a damn shame that poor Sir Alec didn't have longer at Number 10. I'm sure he was a better leader than Ted (Heath). But he got what all leaders get when they fail to win an election. Ted himself will receive a sharp kick in the pants if he fails to succeed on October 10. No doubt Mr & Mrs Whitelaw are planning to move into the Downing Street residence in later years.

See a good film called 'Otley' on BBC2. It's hillarious, dealing with spies, &c. Also see 'Emmerdale Farm' before coming to bed at 11.45.

Ugh, Mrs Ford, the wife of the US president, had one of her breasts removed in hospital at the weekend. The president probably won't stand for election in 1976 because of his wife's health. I expect it's cancer or something.


Sunday September 29, 1974

Up at 11.30 in the lounge. Chris is complaining that no one has made him any tea, and Jackie is moaning about the excrutiating cold. Lynn is still asleep.

Chris is the first to rise (though we did hear some clomping around upstairs which died down after about ten minutes). Surprised that no damage was done last night. Gradually everyone comes back to life & drifting into the lounge.

Andy marvels at me eating trifle before lunch. Trifle, in my opinion, always tastes better after being allowed to stand for 24 hours. I make cups of tea for everyone who wants it, including Mum and Dad who lay motionless in bed like corpses. Nevertheless, they keep muttering things like 'what a night' and 'who was the chap with the feather duster?', &c.

By lunchtime all guests have gone except Jackie. We all sit watching a Doris Day film which is quite revolting. Everyone is exceedingly thirsty and John takes Jackie, Lynn and me to the off licence where we buy four or five bottles of lemonade. Drain them all dry by 6pm.

Listen to the 'Top 20'. 'Kung Fu' is still number one. Don't go out this evening and have a long bath. John goes with Carol to Ilkley. Fed up of writing, so bye, bye, &c.


Saturday September 28, 1974

John's party. The social turn-out of the season, equalled only by Royal Ascot and Princess Margaret's monthly orgies at Kensington Palace. Everyone that meant anything came, and herein is the list:-
Lynn Rhodes
Susan Rhodes
Alison Dixon
Jackie Myers
Christine Dibb
dear Laura
Christine Whitethighs (Phyllis)
Carol Smith
Linda Smith
Denise Akroyd
Christopher Ratcliffe
Andy Graham
Peter Mather
Martyn Cole
David Baker
Keith Brown
Peter Nason, &c.

Jackie came at about 6.30 and we went to the Hare at 8. Chris was being his usual over-jovial self, and Denny looked stunning in a rarther plain, yet attractive Hartnell creation. Ray (Bond?) and Dave Baker came too, and we move on to the Commercial which is packed to the hilt like the Social Security office on pay day. See Keith, &c and remind him about the party. Home at 11 after Papa had purchased several pints of ale for me. Everyone arrives by 11.30 though Dave Lawson never actually turned up. Didn't drink much in excess, though Auntie Hilda's home brewed parsnip wine knocked the top off my sober self. Harry Monkman did his usual party piece. Alison and I went round at about 1am and poured water through his letter-box, which in the colder soberness of Sunday morning still seems very funny. My sense of humour is one of the mosr regal aspects of my character. After all, King Edward VII and King George VI both had this boy-like humour which remained with them until they end of their days, and so do I. Danced until 4.30 on Sunday morning. Curtains have fallen on the romance between Lynn and Ronnie, and I did keep getting a glimpse of her at the side of good old Dave Baker, who's always had an affectionate bond with her. I expected getting a bed but found Andy and Linda in mine when I drifted up at 4.30am. Ended up in the lounge sprawled between two chairs. Chris was on the floor in a sleeping bag, and Lynn and Jackie shared the settee. Most people went home, even Denny. Throughout the whole evening Mum and Dad were the ultimate in fun and kindness & it completely destroys the theory about generation gaps, &c. Hate parties coming to end, it's abominable.


Friday September 27, 1974

Carol and I are alone all day at the YP. She discloses to me that one of the new journalists, who seems to be a bit of a drip, is the eldest son and heir of Viscount Monckton of Brenchley. If I'd have known this last week I'd have doffed my cap or something when he approached me in the search for some things that had gone missing from his desk.

On the subject of the peerage, I see in the YP that the Duke of Roxburghe died yesterday after collapsing on his grouse moor. The new duke is a 19 year-old soldier who is in Cyprus at the moment. He is the youngest duke living at the moment. (I bet that piece of information gave everyone a tremendous thrill & rivetted you all to the diary, tongues hanging out in anticipation for more tales of an equally seductive character).

To the Hare and Hounds tonight. Carol and John are still deep in the depths of new romance, though I must say most of the passion seems to come from Carol, __________, as I discovered at one of our parties last November. Denny baby sits tonight and is not with us.

All go to Wikis where I accidentally stand on the toes of an attractive young lady while dancing, which results in my spending the remainder of the night with her. She's called Sarah Jane and lives in Otley and is a personal friend of Dave Baker's. Quite a pleasant diversion anyway. Come home quite alone in the rain at 2.30. Clad only in my trousers and shirt sleeves I was rarther soggy on my arrival at the Rhodes ancestral pile.


Thursday September 26, 1974

Nothing (of interest) at the YP. Go to Denny's with John and Chris at about 8.30 and go down to the local for a few drinks, coming back to 'The Grange' an hout later to see the programme 'Shoulder to Shoulder' dealing with the suffragettes and all the problems they had facing them before World War One. The prog. this week deals with Emily Davison who killed herself under the King's horse at the 1913 Derby. Leave dear Denny's residence at about midnight. Dog tired. Sleep immediately.



Wednesday September 25, 1974

John's 18th birthday. Don't see him before leaving for the YP but at 12 (it's my half day) we all meet in the Generation Bar beneath the Jubilee. Christine Phyllis Whitethighs, Denny, Chris, and one of Phyllis's friends. Spend about an hour drinking here, before Denny, Chris, the birthday boy and myself move on to the Emmotts, which is in the midst of being decorated at the moment and looks better without that awful purple, flock wallpaper. After pie and peas and cinzanos in the E. we go back to Denny's where John feels rarther faint and finds it necessary to go lay down upstairs. The remaining three of us watch a repeat of Galsworthy's 'Forsyte Saga' part one, first shown in 1967. It was good but seemed very dated. Home for tea and see all the hillarious birthday cards lined up. One from Andy was intended for an 8-year-old girl, and Dave L sent a card 'Birthday Wishes Today You are 2'. I stayed in tonight, whilst John went to the Hare with Carol, Chris and a few others - even Laura turned up.

 At 9.30 MM came to see me. I was most surprised, though I expected to see him sometime this week before his departure to Sheffield on Monday. He gave me his address, &c. John and Chris came back for coffee and we all sat about until 11. Came to bed and looked at Dad's police magazines & see the article I had published in the issue of Sept 1972. Quite funny.


Tuesday September 24, 1974

Typical Autumn day. Very bright, sunny, but cold and chilly.

Nothing in the newspapers worth mentioning, though the electioneering bumf is once more rolling off the Press. Anthony Crosland attacked dear old Margaret Thatcher, who, if I remember correctly, abolished school milk and performed a great, kind service to the millions of little milk-haters throughout the United Kingdom.

Mother says she's lost heart with creepy little Harold (Wilson), and intends placing her vote with Mr Thorpe on Oct 10th.

Marita rings me at the YP in the morning and says she'll be at the Generation Bar in order to celebrate John's birthday tomorrow, and Denny rings in the afternoon to say the same thing. Quite looking forward to Wednesday's birthday gathering in that small ale cellar beneath the Jubilee pub close to Leeds Town Hall. With some relief on my part, though not on John's, tomorrow will see the legalisation of his drinking habits, which have gradually increased over the past 2 years.

Sit watching TV all evening. Nothing other than election rubbish, which deals with speculation that another so-called Labour peer is planning to defect to the Liberals. Harold Wilson refuses even to accept that Lord Chalfont is a member of the Labour party. Cowards way out I say.

That aristocratic drunkard, Lady Jane Wellesley, is making a name for herself in electioneering circles. Her brother Lord Douro is a Tory candidate in the Islington constituency, and she's going round the streets singing slogans and handing out leaflets. The Prince of Wales can hardly marry a girl who has led an active political life, and I suppose this is the straw that'll break the camel's back. Her drinking was bad enough, but this?


Monday September 23, 1974

Nothing to report other than the fact that I've taken over Mrs Beaumont's desk, which commands a better view of the YP newsroom.


Sunday September 22, 1974

15th after Trinity. Up at nearly 12. Have little bacon for breakfast and discuss changing my driving test date with that of Mamas. Come upstairs and unpack and have a bath.

Today is the 26th birthday of Capt Mark Phillips. Let the Bells toll their Joyous News throughout the Kingdom! Some sort of public celebration really ought to be lavished upon the young captain who, after all, rescued Britain's favourite princess from spinsterhood.

The Gadsbys come after tea, and John and I go to the Hare in the 1100 after collecting Carol from her Yeadon residence.

Dave comes with Chris, and never do I fail to have hysterics when Mr Lawson is on the scene. Move on to that soddin' little pub in Askwith that doesn't sell crisps, peanuts 'or anything of that nature, sir'. Snobs! I wouldn't mind but it's only bloody Askwith, not Ascot.

Back to Westfield Fisheries where I dissolved into fits of laughter at Dave, who looking at the large, sprawling woman said: "She must eat two fish for every one she serves." Absolutely sick to death of laughing.


Saturday September 21, 1974

Cold, rainy and miserable day. Up at 10 feeling better after last night's attack of stomach pains which both John and I credited to the Advocaat we consumed before dinner yesterday.

At 11 John and Hugo go to Ascot to see a man about a swimming pool, and we prepare to leave for home. At 11.30 Sheila accompanies Denny and I to the bus stop opposite the castle, and we bid our farewells before getting the London coach half an hour later. Denny had a little weep as we left, passing the castle with the Union Jack hanging limply in the drizzle. The both of us sat quietly on the coach, and I glanced at 'The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe' by C.S. Lewis, which is a remarkable little book probably intended for 10-year-olds but who cares?

Don't leave London until 2.30. Bradford at 7pm after a half hour stop at Leicester. Denny and I part arranging to meet in the Hare and Hounds at about 8. Home by 7.30 and John helped me home with my case after spotting me alighting from the bus.

Dad looks much older after seeing Uncle John for a few days. They look so much alike but Papa does look more elderly.

To the Hare. Everyone arrives except Dave L who isn't coming out until tomorrow night. My stomach ache returns and I don't really feel like supping cold ale, and I switch to rum and orange, purely for medicinal purposes, and it certainly warms my interior. Move to the Malt Shovel in Menston where we stay until 10.30. Glad that John and Carol are going out together again. I say 'again' but the only time they've been out before was at Jackie's 18th. Come back to Pine Tops. Chris, Phyllis Whitethighs, John and Carol and watch a boring James Mason film until after 1. John's car breaks down on his return from taking the mob home and Papa isn't very pleased about getting up at 2am.


Friday September 20, 1974

Our last day in Windsor. Denny and I go look at the castle again, and then go to the Three Tuns pub and sit drinking campari and cinzano until 3. Feeling very drowsy we stagger back to 13, Clewer Fields where we watch a Anna Neagle film on TV and mess about in general.

John and Sheila come in from work and we have too much advocaat to drink. This must be the most unpleasant liquid refreshment I have ever experienced. My nose is really terrible today with 'Hugo-itis' (dog allergy). Have a hot bath to steam my sinuses. Dress in my suit and at 8 we go to the 'Harte and Garter' for dinner. The main course is upset when John gets violent pains in his tummy. The same thing happens to me half an hour later. Nevertheless, we all enjoyed the evening out and John refuses to let Denny and I contribute to the bill, which upsets Denny.

D and I go on to the Bierkeller, only downstairs from the restaurant, but we leave 15 minutes later because of the heat and the crowds. Back to Clewer Fields where we listen to records and drink coffee. Listen to John go through his old address book.

Bed at 1. But Denny and I talk until 3.30. Had tummy attack at 2.30 and the call of nature dragged me to the loo several times in the early hours.


Thursday September 19, 1974

Rise at 11.15 after a very comfortable night. Excuse the condition of my writing but I have no fountain pen with me and I'm having to make do with one of Sheila's biros.

Very warm and sunny day. One of the best since we arrived here. Forgot to mention in yesterday's entry that Denny and I went to Buckingham Palace (18th) to see George III's collection of pictues and other items of historical interest. Fancy, actually setting foot in Buck House!

Go into Windsor where I have my hair cut in a new place called Franco's. The chap spoke little English and cut my hair in a fashion he thought fit. It looks quite pleasant and Denny agrees it doesn't look bad at all. We go to the castle (again) and into the state apartments (again). It's amazing how much more you manage to see the second time around. Saw the bullet that killed Lord Nelson at Trafalgar displayed in a glass case in one of the castle chambers.



Wednesday September 18, 1974

Brilliant day. Denny and I are up and out by 8.15 and are in London by 10am.

Very wam morning and we stand outside Buckingham Palace where a large crowd is assembled to watch the changing of the guard. A very impressive scene with the Welsh Guards follows. We go by tube to the Tower of London, where a Yeoman warder rumages through Denny's handbag looking for bombs and grenades. Have a guided tour before seeing the Crown Jewels again. the Imperial StateCrown is the ultimate in beauty.

See from the newspapers (hanging about the place) that we are going to the polls on October 10. Denny and I move on to Downing Street where a large crowd of BBC, Thames TV and ITV cameras are displayed awaiting the arrival of Mr Wilson or some other worthies. See Lady Falkender arrive and capture the event on camera for posterity. Get the tube to Westminster and stare at Big Ben and the new statue of Sir Winston Churchill which is an unsightly object. Quite exhausted we go back to Victoria and get the train to Windsor arriving back at 7.

Go for a pizza at the restaurant near Queen Victoria's statue at the head of Peascod Street and leave 10 minutes later after scoffing loads of the stuff. Sit in front of the TV all evening with John and Sheila seeing "Steptoe and Son" which gets more and more hillarious each time the series is churned out. Get some beer in from the Copper Horse pub and feel drowsy in front of the gas fire. Not at all surprised about the election date...


Tuesday September 17, 1974

Denny and I spend a quiet day in Windsor, doing nothing exciting in particular. Buy a silver locket from an antique shop over the bridge in Eton, and then drift around capturing the favourite views in permanent photographic creations.

Decide, with Denny's prompting, to have my hair permed on Thursday morning - should make a nice going home present for all the family!

Go to the safari park disco at 8.30 which brings back memories of last June with John. Don't like the local crowd much and the bar staff are shocking. The prices are.. arrgghh! It cost £1.16 for two double pernods and orange. Hell Fire, Mr Wilson ought to do something with his prices minister, Mrs Shirley Williams, MP. If you ask my opninion, she isn't worth the money...


Monday September 16, 1974

Gorgeous morning. Denny and I walk the length of the Long Walk which goes from Windsor Castle to the 'Copper Horse' with King George III sat proudly upon it, a total of three miles. We also walked all the way back. We were completely fagged out. The glorious views of the castle relieved the pain of our aching toes and knees.

Came back to Clewer Fields and devoured a massive breakfast with John. Do nothing in the afternoon other than browse around the shops and take another glance at the castle, seeing Her Majesty's private rose garden which is only open to the public when HM is out of England. She is in Scotland at Balmoral at the moment. Everything about the castle is truly breathtaking - the most glorious place in Britain and even Uncle Harry said he thought Yorkshire was the best place on earth until he clapped eyes on Berkshire.

Denny and I go the Bierkeller, which is very quiet, no doubt because it's Monday. Move on to the College Arms at Eton, where we are the only drinkers in the bar. Drink Cinzano. Finish at 9.30 and look round the tiny antique shops until after 11. Home for 11.30 to discover John and Sheila have gone to bed leaving us to our own devices.


Sunday September 15, 1974

14th after Trinity. Wet, rainy day. Not a nice start to the holiday, but Denny and I enjoy ourselves all the same.

Have a late breakfast and go up to the castle at about 1pm where I show Denny the sights of Windsor. At about 2 we get tickets to view the state apartmentsm royal picture collection, and Queen Mary's Dolls House. The interior of the castle is splendid, though the place is being re-decorated at the moment and workmen and scaffolding littered the plush interiors like discarded ice lolly wrappers on a vicarage lawn. Saw the throne room and noticed that the throne is in a rarther bad state of repair - the stuffing poking out from the arm rests. The whole thing looked really shoddy. Prince Philip really ought to spend more of his free time doing odd jobs around the house on Sunday mornings instead of rushing off out to play polo or go fishing.

After one of Sheila's famous sizeable dinners we collapsed in the lounge to see the film 'Battle of Britain' which was good, and then another one 'Twisted Nerve' starring Hayley Mills, who is the doube of Lynn, my sister who I miss when I'm away. Bed at about 12.


Saturday September 14, 1974

Up at 6.30 with Lynn. Denny and I are thrilled at the prospect of spending a week in Windsor. Leave with suit cases &c, for Bradford at 7.30.

Pleasant morning and it becomes warm and sunny as the day progresses. Leave Bradford for London at 8.15. We stop at Leicester on the way and buy a copy of 'Forum' magazine which deals with all the sexual aspects of life. Some really filthy letters are published herein by perverted readers.

Get coach from London to Windsor passing close to Heathrow where Denny is thrilled at the sight of the 'planes. Arrive at beautiful Windsor at 3 and go immediately to Sheila's with the luggage. Uncle Harry comes shortly later and we discuss details of the weeks schedule over a cup of coffee.

Uncle Harry takes Denny and I for a quick tour round Windsor, taking in the Great Park and Stoke Poges (joke). Back for a sizeable meal and then we all go on to the Bierkeller where Harry and Denny become quite fresh. Really hysterical evening and John was on the receiving end of half a pint of Denny's lager which accidentally slipped through her fingers in the mad crush. When Uncle Harry had absorbed his share he disappeared when it was time for us to go.

Go back to John's where Uncle Harry eventually turns up. We take a few photos with a flash cube and depart to our appointed places of sleep.


Friday September 13, 1974

Last day at the YP before Windsor. Janice leaves today. Thank the Lord she is gone.

Go to the Hare and Hounds in the evening where we see the photographs of our Grassington weekend which Dave B's had developed so soon. Dave Lawson is also a member of the party and it's the first time I've seen him since last weekend._______.Mum and Dad join us for a drink and we bid farewell to them because when we get in tonight it will be too late to make any farewells of any kind. Dave, Chris, John, Denny, Carol, Phyllis Whitethighs, &c, go to the Tudor Bar at Burley-in-Wharfedale. Good laugh is had by all.

On to Wikis, all except Dave L who refuses to patronise the place, though he promises to come on Friday September 27. Home at 2 after a thrilling evening. I think that John and Carol are going out again, but you know what the "happy family" are like. Far too much of this 'here today, gone tomorrow' attitude. I think John and Carol make an attractive couple.



Thursday September 12, 1974

Nothing much to report today. The YP was most uneventful. I'm quite tired lately and the Windsor holiday next week will make a very attractive interlude to my miserable hum-drum existence.


Wednesday September 11, 1974

Janice not at the office today because of morning sickness. Warm, sunny day, though it rains as I leave the YP at 5. Bloody typical. Nothing at all happens at home. Mum and Dad go to the Peacock in Yeadon with Auntie Eleanor and Uncle Jack. Auntie celebrates her birthday today, and she's taking a party to Harry Ramsden's after the pub shuts. No other person is quite like Mrs Jack Myers. Often hysterical, but always amusing, and is a unique member of our large, cumbersome clan. I certainly like her. The Wilsons are a lot better than Papa's filthy mob, who make quite a gruesome bunch. Uncles John and Harry are fantastic but the remainder don't measure up to any of my own standards as decent human beings. _____ is about the worst one, closely followed by _______, who is only related by marriage, but related all the same. See the Marx Brothers film 'Day at the Races' which finishes at 11 o'clock. Still no news of a general election. The Tory manifesto was published today & at Brighton Mr Jeremy Thorpe MP, says he'd agree to a coalition government if the need arises. Don't often stay at home on Wednesday nights, but I've enjoyed it all the same.


Tuesday September, 10, 1974

Tell Kathleen that I intend going to London on October 19, which is of course Motor Show Saturday. She says I'll have to wait and see because Sarah is on holiday, and Janice won't be with us, etc. Question Sarah about this and she says she'll be back from North Africa on Oct 9 or 10th. Kathleen is alo worried about me being off because of the damned election, which could be any time in Oct. But why the Hell should I care? I still have one day owing me from the last Bank Holiday s I'll go to London whether my visit is sanctioned by the 'Boss' or not. Warm day but don't see much of it. Home at 6.15. Mum is preparing my clothes for next weeks trip to Windsor, though I would like a few extra things before I depart. My hair for one, is far too long for comfort now. Marita would cetainly disagree with me having it cut. Disgusted with the YP for not doing anything on the Prince of Wales and his new helicopter navigation job. He will be the first King of England to have piloted a heliopter. Ring Denny & she says she has booked the coach for Lonon from Bradford at 8.15 Saturday morning. Felt a twit when I rang for I mistook Lorraine for Denny and she also, Lorraine that is, thought I was Michael, her boyfiend. Farcical. See the i9 o'clock news & take phots of the family plus Peter N and Ronnie. Bed at about 11 o'clock.



Monday September 9, 1974

Go with John to Shipley to keep him company whilst enrolling for a further year at tech. See Peter Mather going into the building. John drives me to Marita's at about 8.30 and we look at the slides from the Appletreewick weekend. Must have copies of them because they're such a laugh. With Marita to the Emmotts where Andy, Peter, Ray, etc, soon follow. Stay till 10.30. Have a good time with Marita_______.Don't like the Emmotts at all & feel no fondness towards it after all the good times I've had therein. Ivy was in her corner but I didn't get chance to have a word. Saw Sandra Lawson and Helen. Ought to have rung David tonight really, but I haven't had time to contact anyone at all. Frosty night when we leave the Emmotts car park and we all grumble about not having had any summer at all this year which is quite depressing. Looking forward to Christmas. Home at 10.30. Put a film in David's camera which he kindly lent me for the duration of next weeks holidays. Have little to eat and bed before 11.30.


Sunday September 8, 1974

Wake up snug as a bug in a rug at 10.30. A wasp settles in Dave L's hair, and the hilarity caused by Pete spraying Dave's curly mop with fly-killer will be remembered long after the events of the weekend have passed into oblivion.

Hear on the news over toast and marmalade that Harold Wilson is with the Queen at Balmoral no doubt discussing election dates and tactics. October 3 or 10 seems to be the likely choice but nobody knows which one it is other than Harold, Her Majesty and Mrs Wilson (surely he passes on these little secrets to his dear wife?).

Dave L and I go with a camera for a tramp over the moors, taking hurried shots of sheep and large fungi plants feeding off the bark of rotten trees.

Very nice afternoon and the first nice weather we've had all weekend. Dave Lawson is a great chap. I've known him since 1967 and he's never changed one iota since that time - he has physically and mentally of course - but as far as outlook, humour and general appearance - not at all. One thing's for certain. I get on with no one better than Dave, never have done.

Back from the moors at 6.15. Sit cooling feet and sipping hot tea until the end of 'Pick of the Pops' at 7 - when we have a mad half hour with the camera. Back to the pub in Linton. Fruit machines too. Dave L, Dave B, Phyllis Whitethighs and I form a syndicate on the fruit machine and manage to lose £2 between us. All heartbroken. Leave for home at about 10.15.

Back before 11. Mum and Dad are at Pudsey but I wait up for them, eating steak until 12. See the newspapers for the first time since Friday. Fantastic weekend.


Saturday September 7, 1974

As I've already said, we were attacked by savage wasps whilst listening to the Ed Stewart Show. Fortunately, Chris found some fly killer in the caravan and we managed to keep them off us whilst we got dressed.

Make breakfast much to the disgust of Linda, who wanted an extra 10 minutes in bed with Andy. Chris takes the three of us into Grassington for the afternoon, where the torrential rain lashed down upo us.

Buy several necessities of food, like cocktail cherries, and manadarin oranges. Also buy on impulse, a large feather duster - don't ask me why.

Go into a pub for lunch and meet a bloke who dwells at Rawdon, who was far too familiar with us for comfort - even going so far of offer us beds in his caravan if the weather continues to worsen. Andy labelled him a queer from the start, but I just think he was being slightly over-friendly.

Stagger round the camp-site in a gale force wind, glass of martini in one hand, trying to secure the tent, which unfortunately rips open in a sudden surge of wind. The destroyed tent renders us homeless for the night. Peter offers us all beds in the caravan which we gratefully accept (good of him I'm sure). Back on a pub-crawl again where I fall foul to the lure of fruit machines which Dave Lawson introduced me to. Good evening & then back to the caravan feeling full of cold, no doubt caught off Chris. Everyone in the caravan except Andy, Linda, Ray and Gill. Carol Smith and Christine Whitethighs get drunk and fight like cats in the night.


Friday September 6, 1974

The begining of the 2 day event in Grassington.

Chris collects us at 7.30 with Dave L, and we all pile into the car with too much lugggage for comfort.

The weather isn't at all too bad, and at 8.30 we are at the caravan, where Andy, Linda, Gill ad Raymond are rarther amusing playing cards whilst the beds stand invitingly empty. Go to a local pub, which one I can't remember, but we stay till about 11.15 drinking all the shorts we can think of - playing dominos and clowning around in general.

 Buy a large bottle of Martini Rosso, me and Dave that is, before going back to Denny's makesift tent for a booze-up. Andy, Ray and the girls hog Peter's caravan and ban us from entering, leaving Dave, John, Chris and I to the tent. Settle down to a drunken escapade - not too drunken I might add - sit listening to the radio clad in sleeping bags until 2-ish. Sleep until 5 when we are awakened by a horrific rainstorm lashing the tent - remain comfortable and calm throughout. Laugh with Dave and poor Chris who is almost out of the tent flap.

Sleep till 7.30. Attacked by a swarm of marauding wasps which interrupt our peaceful rest. Hell, I've just realised I'm writing about Saturday morning which should be on the next page. P.T.O.