The Vanished Landscape: A 1930s Childhood in the Potteries

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9780297847724: The Vanished Landscape: A 1930s Childhood in the Potteries
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Paul Johnson, the celebrated historian, grew up in Tunstall, one of the six towns around Stoke-on-Trent that made up the Potteries'. From an early age he was fascinated by the strange beauty of its volcanic landscape of fiery furnaces belching out heat and smoke. As a child he often accompanied his father - headmaster of the local art school and desperate to find jobs for his students, for this was the Hungry Thirties - to the individual pottery firms and their coal-fired ovens. His adored mother and father are at the heart of this story and his older sisters who, as much as his parents, brought him up. Children made their own amusements to an extent unimaginable today, and his life was extraordinarily free and unsupervised. No door was locked - Poverty was everywhere but so were the Ten Commandments.' These pages recall the joys of going to school on a minor branch-line - the 1930s were the tail-end of the great age of rail in England - and the eccentricities and ferocity of grown-ups in an age before political correctness. The book ends in 1938 as the 11-year-old author queues at the town-hall for a gas mask.

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About the Author:

Paul Johnson, who was born in 1928 and educated at Stonyhurst and Magdalen College, Oxford, edited the New Statesman magazine in the 1960s and has written over forty books. A contributor to newspapers all over the world, he lives in London and Somerset.

Review:

"Well written, full of affectionate vignettes of working and family life, it conjures up a very particular place in a rather captivating way." DAILY EXPRESS "An enchanting account of a vanished landscape." SUNDAY TELEGRAPH "unashamedly nostalgic... a sequence of sharp and vivid snapshots of the people, places and events that shaped his imagination." SUNDAY TIMES

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780753819333: The Vanished Landscape: A 1930s Childhood in the Potteries

Featured Edition

ISBN 10:  0753819333 ISBN 13:  9780753819333
Publisher: Phoenix (an Imprint of The Orion..., 2005
Softcover

9780750525107: The Vanished Landscape: A 1930s Childhood in the Potteries

Magna ..., 2006
Hardcover

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