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20090421

Saturday July 7, 1973

Get up at 8 o'clock. The rain is too terrible. Poor Brian and Valerie! Mother goes to the hairdressers I have no breakfast and prepare my suit ready for wearing. By 9.45 everyone is prepared. Leave for Pudsey at 10. Arrive at Auntie Hilda's at 10.20. Auntie H is in a large black hat decorated with tiny flowers - Dad laughs.

We leave for the church almost immediately. Service begins at 11. Valerie walks down the aisle on the arm of her father - she looks beautiful. Service over by 11.35. Auntie Eleanor wept as we sang the 23rd Psalm. The reception was at Horsforth. See Jackie for the first time since New Year's Day - she has always been my favourite cousin and always will be. Along with all the children we decorate Brian's car - rude things written in lipstick all over the doors, windows and roof. Auntie Mabel and Frank removed the caps off the wheels and filled them with stones. It began to rain.

At 2.30 Brian and Valerie left for Manchester. The car looked fantastic. We all stood in the rain to see them off. We went to see the wedding presents at Valerie's parents house, and then went to Marlene and Frank's and drank home-made beer and wine until nearly 5. Uncle T was quite fresh. Very enjoyable afternoon indeed.

Go to Auntie Eleanor's until 8 when we went across to the Prospect pub until 10.45. All the family except Uncle Peter, John and the children assemble. Uncle Jack Paine is especially funny. Jackie and John come across at 9. Sandwiches are specially made and brought in - wonderful. Uncle Jack Myers opened a kitty to which I contributed £1. Frank and I got the last round of drinks.

Go back to Auntie Eleanor's where she and Dad did the usual 'Spanish dance' party piece. But they got a bit carried away and brought handfuls of soot from the chimney - by 1.30 we are all blacked-up like 'Black and White Minstrels'. Auntie Mabel missed all the fun again. Home at 2.30, black, after a fantastic day.

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Friday July 6, 1973

A hazy, warm day. Go to school at 10.0. Sit with Vilma Crossfield and catch two horrid bluebottle flies in a coke bottle. They are repulsive little creatures. June arrives at 10.45. Fantastic being able to see her again - sit together until 11.30 Walk to the bus stop and have a romantic interlude in the bus shelter. Catch the 33 bus at 12.10. Arrive Guiseley at 12.20. Not seeing June again until Sunday evening when she will be 17 years old!

Meet Mother at 12.30 outside Guiseley Railway station. See Mrs West leave on a Leeds train. Catch a train to Bradford at 12.45.

On arrival we have a good lunch - fabulous piece of steak. On leaving the restaurant a torrential rainstorm is let loose upon us. I am in shirt sleeves and Mum is a sleeveless-dress. Shop until 4.15. I find no decent shoes. Mama gets fitted out in a pretty outfit including a large hat - Mother never wears hats!

Arrive Guiseley at 4.45. Mr Melville gives us a lift home. Go to CW at 7.30. Les is once again playing at chef. Sue goes out leaving us to the job.

Home and in the bath by 12.30. Feeling really sorry for Brian and Valerie who, by the look of things, will be marrying in pouring rain. Sit in bed reading until my hair dried.

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Thursday July 5, 1973

June and I today have been going out for 22 weeks. We should be celebrating this tonight. Go to school for 10 o'clock - take in a pile of 'ye olde records' - very enjoyable. Christine, Maggie Edwards, Liz Claptrap, Michael Stott and I sit about grooving to such classics as 'Sunny Afternoon' by the Kinks. A rainy, humid day.

Home by 5. June rings at 7 and says she is very tired having worked all day and would like to be excused from the arduous ordeal of going out tonight - I sympathise. John, who is already in the bath, insists on going out and we go up to the Emmotts on the 7.30 bus. After spending half an hour in the local we decide to walk to the Queen's Arms down Apperley Lane. Arrive 8.45. John doesn't like the place much. The walls have portraits of Queens all over them - both regnants and consorts - we stand near Anne Boleyn, Mary of Teck and Queen Victoria.

Set off at 9.45 for Guiseley, walking through the sewage works, and after a long walk we have fish and chips in Guiseley. Come home at 11.50. See 'Jason King' on tv. Come to bed at 12.35.

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Wednesday July 4, 1973

Independence Day, USA. Prince Michael of Kent, 31. Go to school for another terribly boring day. Christine and I sit listening to the Sgt Peppers album by the Beatles. Totally sick of it after a week of the same old thing.

Came home at nearly 5 o'clock after getting a new book entitled: 'The Princesses Royal', which is a biography of all the six women who have held this title. The title can be created at the discretion of the Sovereign and it has always been bestowed on the eldest daughter. The title fell abeyant in 1965 with the death of Princess Mary, Countess of Harewood. I expect that the Queen will one day make Princess Anne the Princess Royal. In fact, it would not surprise me in the least if Her Majesty did this on the eve of her daughters wedding in November. I suspect that Nov 13, 1973 will be the date that Princess Anne becomes the Princess Royal.

See 'Coronation Street' - Bette Lynch is found attacked at 8. Have to wait till Monday to see what happened to her.

Bed at 10.35.

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Tuesday July 3, 1973

Benton Park is terrible without June. Spent the whole day doing absolutely nothing. I can hardly wait to start my job with the council - and all those evenings absolutely free!

The weather is very changeable, but who cares? Where I'm going next week I don't care if monsoons sweep across Yorkshire.

At 7 o'clock go down to the Chuck Wagon - see the new chef - and after being told that he was a queer I imagined to behold some gigantic fairy, prancing from griddle to sink. He didn't look odd at all! In fact, he seemed quite a good sort of bloke really. Work until nearly 1. Read Prince Philip's biography and come to bed at 1.35. Before retiring, I write a letter to June.

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Monday July 2, 1973


Got up very thirsty at 7.0. My throat feels as though it's been cut! Leave for school on the 9 o'clock bus. Forget Denny's material for Italy. Arrive 9.30. What an exceedingly boring day it was which followed. Played "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Heart's Club Band" by Beatles (1967) - all day! Christine was nearly driven to insanity.

Go to Rawdon library at 2.15. Get a biography of the Duke of Edinburgh by his cousin Queen Alexandra of Yugoslavia - it's supposed to be a family portrait - but one comes across the same old material in all his biographies. Indeed, Booth gives more details of HRH's private life than does his own cousin, Her Majesty the Queen of Yugoslavia.

See Bill Dixon, Brian Jilkes and Andy Dale at Micklefield. Have a laugh. Back at Benton at 3.30. Christine has made butties for the cricket tournament - I have a salmon sandwich.

Talk with Mary, the good-old cleaner - what a girl she is! Christine and I spend half an hour with her.

Home at 5.30. Go to the Fleece at 8. June and Susan arrive. Sit with an old man who buys us drinks and shows us old photos of his school class. Move on to the beer garden at the Brown Cow. Sit under a shaky looking umberella - June and Susan argue about their sister and her bad-tempered hubby, John. Walk around Horsforth, arriving at the main road at 11.30 - missed the last bus. Ring Mama who subsequently rings Dad at work and he picks John and I up in the police car at 12.20. Home by 12.30.

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Sunday July 1, 1973

2nd after Trinity. Dominion Day, Canada. June is still away with Christine and John. So I'm spending a bachelor night out with Dave, John, Philip and Christine.

Another beautiful day. Get up at 10.0am. Have meagre breakfast - sit on the back lawn from 11 till 1.30. Too overpowering. Go read Mabell Airlie's memoirs in a darkened lounge. Lynn goes red as a lobster in the direct sunlight. Even John now gives the impression of being permanently embarrassed. Dave rings. I then ring Philip at 3.45. Speak to Christine - promise to meet at Yeadon at 7.30pm.

Dave collects us at 7.25. Mama and Papa go off to Wakefield Theatre Club with Joe and Anne Grunwell to see Fame and Price - return at 2am rather disappointed. Collect Philip and Christine at 7.40. Go to the Tudor Bar, Burley. Have a pint and then go to the Stony Lea - where I walk out with pint glasses - do the same with two glasses at the Vesper Gate at Kirkstall Rd, Leeds. A very enjoyable evening. Christine was on vodka and blackcurrant. Philip is great to get on with. Arrive home 11.05 very intoxicated. Dave is very amused by my predicament. Dale rings at 11.30 with some message for Kim Dean about Mondays cricket match - pupils v. staff. Bed at 12.

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Saturday June 30, 1973

My last Saturday at the CW. Get up at 8.30 to the sound of concrete pouring onto the drive. Papa is re-laying the drive immediately in front of the garage. Get up and act as labourer to Dad and John until 10.30. Mother, Lynn and Sue have breakfast whilst John and I prepare to go to Bradford - haircut.

Leave 11. A brilliant sunny, hot day. Walk all the way to the bottom of Hawksworth Lane and then have to walk all the way back up to collect my library books - get the bus at 11.30. Have our hair cut at 12.30 - 45p each - not bad at all. On the way to the bus we see 'Aunt Bore' - she really is a catty old cow, putting it politely. Arrive Guiseley 1.30.

Go to Usshers where John buys sunglasses. See Dave with Mick Orchard - heading to Leeds shopping - looking very secretive.

Go to Fieldhead Road School gala. See Mrs West, James, Mrs Kingsbury, etc. Mr Illingworth really is a snob and a pig. Just because Papa and Mama are not members of the Parents Teachers' Association he choses to ignore us. Good luck to the old creep, that's what I say.

Arrive home where Mum entertains Maureen, her old school mate from the 1700s.

Go to CW. Pauline is with a darker mop of dyed hair. She's sad that it's my final Saturday - or so she says. Unusual night. Home by 1.30. Bed at 2.0am.

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Friday June 29, 1973

Sue and Toffer back from France. Get up at 8 o'clock. School at 10 o'clock. Have a really hysterical day. Dave tearing up his Cumming and Stanlake reference books. MM is disgusted at his behaviour.

Go see Mrs Lane about all my text books and something about open day on July 7. Grief! Back to the workhouse tonight! See Groves about my police grant thing - he reads me the comments he's made about my character - cannot be disappointed really.

Come home and Mum tells me that Bill has got me the painting job - I am ecstatic. Decide immediately that the Chuck Wagon and I are over. Lynn and Christine D promise to take-over on our return from Italy.

Go to the CW at 7.30. Warn Sue of what is happening - she does not really object - but was banking on me staying until September. Finish at about 1. Arrive home in time to see John arriving home from the Intercon. I cannot believe my eyes. Willie's car is smashed in at the front. They've had a bump but I am assured that it wasn't Willie's fault. Stagger to bed.

Here's what Groves said about me: 'Michael spent the first five years of his secondary school career in a secondary modern school and there can be little doubt that 'failure' in the eleven-plus selection procedure deprived him of confidence and inhibited him intellectually. Certainly he is not in the first rank in terms of ability but he has gained in confidence and he has found that he can succeed in Ordinary and Advanced Level work and his past performance probably does him much less than justice as a guide to his future potential. He has already gained C.S.E. Grade 1 passes in History and Religious Education. He has passed the G.C.E. Ordinary Level in Art, Grade 2, and English, Grade 6, and this summer he sat examinations in Advanced Level History and Ordinary Level Economics. His written expression is seen to be improving and has reached an adequate standard and his oral performance is becoming more articulate as he overcomes his shyness. Michael is a rather quiet young man of pleasant disposition and even temperament. He has shown a commendable determination and strength of purpose in overcoming early setbacks to get this far along his chosen path and I have no doubt that these same qualities will serve him well in the future. I am glad to support this application.'

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Thursday June 28, 1973

Sleep until nearly 12 o'clock. Mother still ill with the infernal cold. Sue also has it now, and I feel slightly nasal.

Go to school in the afternoon. Mr Ayling has been pulling Dave through to bits over his attitude to the 'A' level. The trouble with Ayling is that he puts economics above all other things in life. Oh, he's such a pompous snob!

Walk to the bus stop with Dave and Christine - who almost wets herself laughing. Home by 4.50.

Read the memoirs of Mabell, Countess of Airlie, granny of the Hon Angus Ogilvy, which I collected from Rawdon library this afternoon.. It throws a very interesting light on the aura of austerity surrounding the court of George V and Queen Mary. And in fact Queen Mary was not the prim figure she is often portrayed as by biographers. Also have a book about Princess Beatrice, Queen Victoria's youngest child - haven't touched that one yet.

Come to bed and read until midnight. Poor June is being dragged off to Appletreewick with Christine and John until Sunday night. We will not see each other until Monday night. I'll write her a letter tomorrow.

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Wednesday June 27, 1973

Mum still ill with cold -Susan is also "under the weather". Get up at 9 and go to Benton on the 9.30 bus. Very quiet at school. Christine, MM, and Dave turn up after lunch. Quite nervous at the thought of going to Christine Hobson's for tea - I loathe having to meet complete strangers whose sole intention is to 'eye you up' and see whether you come up to the standard required for the courtship of their female relation.

Sit and "flirt" with Fat Irene until 4.05. Get the 4.15 55 bus. Arrive at Christine H's at 4.30. Little Karen is playing in the sandpit on the drive. June comes to the door and is surprised to see me so early. Sit with a cup of tea until 5.40. June is very nervous. Play with baby Karen building lego models - such a sweet, good natured child. John H arrives at 5.30. Over dinner John discusses holidays - he thinks Italy is somewhat 'dirtier' than Spain and France. His generalisation astounds me. Clearly he's a geographer of note. Sit with them until 7.30. Karen asks me: "Are you Auntie June's friend?"

Having no money we walk round Guiseley - a beautiful evening. We walk until 11. I take her back home.

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Tuesday June 26, 1973

Aaaarrghh!! I can't stand it! TENNIS is back at Wimbledon! Another fortnight of boredom, misery and petty nonsensical sport. A good cartoon in the Daily Mail this morning. A baby is throwing a screaming tantrum on the beach, mother turns to father and says: "I'm sure he'll be a tennis star when he grows up, because he's such a horrible little boy."

The weather is really terrible once again. But humid and uncomfortably warm. Stay in bed until 10.30. Mother is still unwell. Clear up the breakfast things and so the housework for her. Have a bath at 11.45 and make a bit of lunch - Mother waits to have hers with Father. She gets up at 1.30. I walk down the lane and catch a bus to Rawdon at 2.30. Drop in at school. Christine is bored to death. I go to the library and come back to school at 4 and see Groves about a special police grant. He's very helpful. Sit with Christine, Andy Graham and Irene until 4.30. See Mrs Capstan-Fullstrength. Walk down for the bus home in pouring rain - Christine has her raincoat on her head. Get the 4.45 55 bus. Home for dinner. And yes, tennis on the tv. Come upstairs in disgust. I'm too bored for words. Never did I think I would be wishing Sue and Toffer a hasty return - but I need the money and the work will occupy my time. Roll on Friday.
But at the same time I miss the idea of going out on Friday and Saturday evenings - hate to think that everyone is enjoying life whilst I slave over a hot sink. See tv and read until bed.


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