Photo by Martin Johns
Born in Hickling in 1944 David tells of his early years playing with John Beales’ son, Patrick. He and Patrick constructed a run of tunnels under John’s garden such that John would find it difficult to grow crops. David also recalls the smell of herring emanating from the Smokehouse in the Beales’ garden.
Another of David’s lifelong friends was Huggie Gibbs (also interviewed for Voices of Hickling) and David tells how “Huggie saved my life.”
David reminisces about the village life of his schooldays fondly remembering farmers from Catfield herding cattle through the streets of Hickling, picking and selling blackcurrants to pay for speedboat hire on the Broads, and the delights of the visiting fair.
David’s father and brother both worked as builders (although his brother subsequently went farming). David started work at Sands as a welder, subsequently marrying Yvonne and moving to Suffolk to work for another company – until he was made redundant 17 years later. Although still living near Stowmarket, David still harbours wishes to return to his roots in Hickling.