John (excerpt)read by Peter Marinker for 'First Memories / Last Words'.

John was born in a village on the south coast of England in 1930. He travelled north with his lift-engineer father in 1939 and back south in the mid fifties to take over a failing electrical shop which quickly went bankrupt. His time in National Service in the army was notable only for losing a pair of trousers. Despite his obvious education he says that he was never able to hold on to any full-time work. Most of his memories relate to a period in his teens and early twenties when he worked as a deckchair attendant. He has no surviving family and never married. John was diagnosed with a rare form of Parkinson’s disease about twenty years ago. Although he talks about sitting in a chair he is in fact in bed and immobile. John wanted to tell his story so readers and listeners would not just see him as ‘another man in bed’. We completed four short sessions before John died. This 6 minute excerpt contains some of the last words he spoke.