'Adolf Hitler, his bombers – and me'
First published as 'Class War' by Pipers' Ash in 2008. This is no longer available. Now retitled and extended, this new book gives more detail on the background to the German bombing strategy and the Civil Defence (originally 'the ARP') provision in the UK, so placing his personal story in its historical context.
The practicalities and the emotional repercussions of evacuation are described from the viewpoints of Kitty his older sister but especially Eric (as this is his autobiography) and his parents as far as those are understood.
They had all expected the children would be fostered together but they never were. First going to Folkestone, Kent, they were moved on to South Wales six months later, and as his memories become clearer he describes in detail his life as a reluctantly fostered London 'Vaccie'. After three years away, on their return relationship problems developed with their parents and 3 year old brother.
The background and bombing of Sandhurst Road school, SE London on 20th Jan.1943 and theories why schools were attacked at all (locally at the time were said to be six) are described in some detail. The emotional repercussions within the family in the immediate aftermath are explained, the relationships and experiences he had in hospital and the problems on Eric's return home.
Written with sensitivity, humour and understanding of the others involved in those events - from evacuation and the fostering, to the traumatic events of the bombing of the school, it gives a very personal insight into those times.
ORDER: Standard print edition - lulu.com (ISBN: 978-1-4710-9874-1)
Compact print edition - lulu.com (ISBN: 978-1-2918-1660-0)
E.book - lulu.com (ISBN: 978-1-291-13478-0)
Interesting Website on 'Evacuees'
'My life of crime and courts'
A view of crime and the whole criminal process from an unusual and personal angle – that of a Probation Officer.
Covering the period of 1960 to 1994 it was a period of many changes in both the philosophy and the practices of the Probation Service, which have continued to this day.
Using incidents and situations that are heavily disguised to make any identification of people and locations impossible, Eric finds there can be humour as well as drama in some of the situations any Probation Officer can find themselves in on any day.
Starting from Selection and experiences during Training, he then goes through his time as a Probation Officer in urban and rural areas, at times engaged on tasks that the presentday Service no longer seem to do, then was promoted to Senior Probation Officer as the Liaison Officer at the Higher Courts at the time Quarter Sessions and Assizes were amalgamated into the Crown Court which, he found, involved a much wider range of tasks than the title suggests.
He also 'did time' in a prison as well as spending several more years as Senior for a largely rural area till he was sent to a YOI - as the Senior Probation Officer there.
ORDER: Print edition - lulu.com (ISBN: 978-1-4477-4424-5)