A scientist acted on a nostalgic urge to tell stories from his childhood in Wakefield by writing a highly acclaimed book.
Keith Barraclough, 69, has written a string of scientific publications, but All in Good Time is his first attempt at non-fiction.
In the book, which goes on sale on October 24, the 69-year-old recalls growing up in the Belle Vue area of he city during the 1950s.
Mr Barraclough said: “I had a reasonably good memory and lots of supportive material in the form of diaries, other memorabilia and hordes of old photographs as my father was a very keen amateur photographer.
“I also had to do lots of detailed research and my professional research training came in very useful. The project was also a good means of re-establishing contact with old friends I had not seen for more than 60 years.”
He added: “As well as the detailed descriptions of the people, places and events of the time, I also wanted to capture many key aspects of 1950s life that were so different from today: discipline; order; the trials and tribulations of the 11+ exam and becoming a teenager; the interminable wait for the things we now take for granted – a television set, a bike and a pair of long trousers. The ethos of ‘delayed gratification’, after the investment of hard work and saving up, was the norm rather than the current trend of instant gratification via instant credit – hence the title.”
Wakefield businessman and philanthropist Sir Rodney Walker said in a review of the book: “It transports me back to our happy days at Thornes House Grammar School over 50 years ago.”
Former Wakefield MP David Hinchliffe said: “‘A wonderful blend of personal recollections and serious historical research. The very detailed insights into the Wakefield of the 1950s and the memories of Wakefield Trinity’s emergence as a major force in rugby league are a fascinating record.” For more details on the book, go to www.1950swakefield.co.uk