A Classic Tale

  • Published: February 2011
  • Format: Perfect Bound Softcover(B/W)
  • Pages: 392
  • Size: 5x8
  • ISBN: 9781456774875

This is the incredible tale of the life of a classic car, an MGB GT. The story starts in 1966 with its first owner, a young police officer, who has a dream. Follow the car as it transforms the lives of its fourteen custodians who for a period of time each own the flame red coloured vehicle. We travel with the owners through periods of love, death, joy and sadness. The story is based around the south of England, but we reach as far as Menorca, Devon and Scotland as the owner's lives and work take us to these wonderful places. Prepare yourself to laugh and cry as the enjoyable story unfolds, giving us a small insight into the pleasures of owning a classic car. So don't miss out, jump in, and come with us as we follow the adventures of the car's journey as it travels over forty years on life's special highway.

Chapter 1—1966

News - Harry Roberts captured after killing three policemen. Aberfan school disaster.

Price of a gallon of petrol - Five shillings and five pence

Price of a pint of beer - Nine pence

Henry woke up sweating. Even though the bedroom window was slightly open the sheet felt damp from his body. It was the third time this month that he had encountered the same dream, England to win the World Cup and still over three months before it starts. He got out of bed, pulled the curtains open and looked out on another dreary day. It had obviously been raining during the night as there appeared to be a sheen on the surface of the road. Henry’s first floor flat had a good view up and down the road, and at 6 o’clock in the morning there were just a few movements of cars and people outside.

He was starting nights that evening, and had a whole day to relax before going to work at ten o’clock. Henry walked into the kitchen, put the kettle on and got the porridge from the cupboard. Whilst he was preparing the porridge he made himself a large mug of tea with only a small dash of milk. He’d have to get himself a new mug as he noticed a large chip in the rim as he took his first mouthful. “That’s something I’ll do later” he thought, “ following a walk along the front and a bit of shopping.” He took a bowl from the stand-alone larder unit and spooned the oats into the bowl, added some milk and then decision time, sugar or salt. Henry’s dad always had salt, but Henry preferred the sweetness of the sugar. He would always remember the times at breakfast as a kid, as his dad would try to talk him into putting salt on his porridge saying “You’ll end up just like me.” That would have been great, five foot six inches tall, fifteen stone and suffering from high blood pressure. No wonder he didn’t make sixty. He put some water back in the pan and returned it to the stove. This way, whilst he was eating his breakfast, the water would start loosening the porridge from the sides of the pan as it heated up, making it easier to wash up later on.

Henry could hear the alarm of the couple downstairs. They had only recently moved in and were both teachers at the local junior school. He had thought of being a teacher, but there was one drawback, he hated kids. He felt he had something to give to the community so decided a few years ago to become a policeman.

It was the police that attended his school, with his old neighbour, to tell him that his mum had been killed in a road accident, crossing the road whilst shopping. It wasn’t the lorry drivers fault, Mum had just walked out straight in front of it. All the witnesses had backed the driver up, but even now Henry avoided stopping lorries, as it always brought back painful memories.

His old neighbour, Mrs Johnson, had looked after him for a few days until he had gone to live with his aunt and uncle in Kent. His mum was lucky to be able to clear the mortgage when his dad died a few years previously when he was twelve years old. The flat was consequently rented out to a friend of Mrs Johnson whilst Henry was in Kent. Seven years later Henry moved back into the first floor two bedroomed flat, and started his new life by the sea in Sussex.

It was bit different to the farm in Kent where he had spent those seven years. He had been treated well at first by all the family, but after a while he felt that he was resented by his older cousins. Nothing ever was said, but there was always that underlying atmosphere that he was taking something that belonged to them. He worked hard, always making sure he had something to do. In any spare time, which on a working farm was not a lot, he would go walking, always taking one of the farm sheepdogs with him.

Two years ago when he was nineteen Henry moved back to Sussex. By then Mrs Johnson’s friend had moved away so he moved straight back into his mum’s flat that now belonged to him. It was situated quite close to the sea, not a stones throw, but then some of these new fangled catapults could work wonders.

Henry pottered around the flat for a while, and then grabbed his coat and went out. It took him some five minutes to reach the promenade and the wind was blowing straight in his face. “I don’t know why I’m doing this,” thought Henry, “later on I’ll be getting paid for walking along here.” The promenade was part of the town beat and he was always happiest working that area. The only thing that spoilt it was in the summer, as there were kids everywhere.

The author is a retired police officer who now lives in Hampshire. His passion is reading, classic cars, walking, eating and drinking. He shares his life with his wife Karen and their two cocker spaniel dogs, Freddie and Elsa. This is his first novel.

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Perfect Bound Softcover(B/W)
Price: £9.99
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