Peter Steward's Web Site
Diary June 1978
Thursday 1st June
A very hot and sticky day, not helped by an afternoon of rushing about. Thursdays are even worse at work than the rest of the week because I am left entirely on my own. So I decided to go in a little later today in order to miss the rush hour and so, after breakfast I got in at 9.30 a.m. It was one of those mornings with nothing really on but J making things up just to keep me busy and so with one or two small things and moving the car I got through the morning.
Didn't bother to have any dinner because at least that's a way of losing weight. Then at 2.15 p.m I walked to the Guildhall for the latest case concerning the window bashing yobs. That was really a waste of time. There were quite a few of them up but all the cases were adjourned. Nevertheless it still took them well over an hour and it was far from pleasant sitting in a hot court room. At the end I rushed back to the office to put over some copy and then at 4.45 p.m left the office to drive to Yorkshire.
The weather was strange to say the least. Bright sunshine gave way to torrential rain. Nevertheless I was home at 6.15 p.m in time for tea and then afterwards watched the first game in the 1978 World Cup. West Germany v Poland turned out to be a complete bore. By the time it was over I was very tired and in the end went to bed quite early at just after 10 p.m.
Friday 2nd June
Problems about the house today. Teddy Gilbert is being awkward on a number of questions about rights of way and he won't recommend the money for the mortgage until he is satisfied. So it's our time and money that he is messing about with. I am going to be in difficulties the week after next when Bob goes on holiday because I will have nowhere to live and will have to drive to Yorkshire every day which is going to be tiring to say the least. Otherwise there was at least one nice surprise in the form of an unexpected phone call from Andy Knowles at Norwich. He has got the vacant sports job at Derby. So at least I will have one friend in the area.
As a working day it was as boring as usual. I set out at 8 a.m and reached Nottingham at 9.20 a.m. Had slight difficulties parking and then three jobs all came up at once. The first was about the coming funeral of the policeman who was murdered. The second a £200,000 fire at a Newark school and the third the opening of an inquest on the 16 year old wife who was drowned. I had to go to that and in fact it was my last piece of output for the day. I hung around the office until about 3.45 p.m and then decided to call it a day and beat the rush hour out.
I got to Yorkshire at just after 5 p.m in time to watch Italy beat France in the World Cup. Then had tea and watched television through the evening until 10.15 p.m when we went to John and Adas to telephone the woman about the house at Long Eaton. Didn't rally get any further on that score, so came home and watched Argentina v Hungary. That wasn't over until 1 a.m. At half-time I had a very quick bath and by the time I went to bed I was already half asleep.
Saturday 3rd June
An unashamed day of doing nothing except watch television and, what with racing, cricket and the World Cup on, what else was there to do?
Up at about 10 a.m and started the morning after breakfast by reading. It was another hot day and when Anne returned from shopping we took an old carpet down to her uncles. Then watched the test match on television before having dinner.
Spent the afternoon watching the horse racing and then early evening watching Sweden and Brazil draw 1-1. Then it was the big match of Scotland v Peru, That was quite a turn up because Scotland were expected to win but in fact last 3-1. By the end of that I had developed a headache, probably from watching too much television and so at 11 p.m I went to bed.
Sunday 4th June
Twice today I heard a phrase that I used to use but which now makes me cringe. It's quite simply the old one about if you enjoy your job you don't hate Monday mornings. It came firstly from Peter Harris and then later in the day on television. The sad thing is a few months ago I could honestly say that I enjoyed Mondays. Now I loathe the thought of them and just look forward to the weekends. The trouble is there seems such a gap between the weekends.
Apart from those thoughts, today was okay. Got up at 9.30 a.m feeling refreshed after a decent night's rest. Spent the morning doing very little and then there was the usual early Sunday dinner. After that spent the afternoon sunbathing and watching the cricket on television.
Joan and Peter and the kids paid a quick visit and I had a test drive of Peter's new car. That's one problem I think will come to a head soon with my car getting decidedly rattly. On returning I had tea and then, while Anne went to church, I had a bath and got ready to go out when she returned. The idea was to go and see Chris and Ian but of course we had to pop in to see Mr and Mrs Barton and we stayed there rather longer than was good for us. Eventually left and went to Ian's and stayed there until past 10 p.m before returning home and having supper and going to bed.
Monday 5th June
A most depressing day in which nothing seemed to go right, but when has it over the past three weeks? That's how long I've been in Nottingham and it seems like three years. Got up at 7.30 a.m and reluctantly left Yorkshire at 8 a.m armed with some racing pigeons to liberate just off the M1.
The journey was a fairly straightforward one and I arrived at 9.20 a.m. There was the usual hectic start to the day with three or four things coming up from the news bulletins. That seems to be the routine. Get about four stories done in the morning, a couple from the Evening Post and then virtually nothing during the afternoon. Actually J was lucky not to get a mouthful from me. He gave me about four things to do and I got stuck on one of them and was transferred a number of times. Then while I was on the phone he came through to Bob to tell me to pull my socks up and get some copy over. The evil little man seems to think you can always get the answers to questions straightaway. If I had answered the phone I would have told him where to get off.
Apart from that the other depressing thing was the house. There is so much hassle over the boundaries and a phone call to Gilbert was nothing short of obstructional. I just don't know where to go from here, it's all so depressing. Our solicitors say they are working in our own interests, but all they are doing is putting bloody obstructions in. I can tell you one thin, if this house falls through through no fault of our own I shan't attempt to get another in the area. I will start looking for a new job. The problem is I bet if that happened I wouldn't be able to get one.
At dinnertime I went to look round the shops. The afternoon was largely spent trying to sort out the house. Came back to Bobs at 5.30 p.m and had tea and afterwards decided to drive out to Long Eaton to have a look at the situation. I got lost getting there, but had quite an enjoyable drive through the countryside. Finally arrived and had a chat with the bloke next door. That didn't really solve anything I didn't already know and I got no further because Gilbert won't do anything without it being put in writing. So how long is all that going to take? After all that I came back to Bobs and spent the rest of the evening quietly.
Tuesday 6th June
In many ways this was a much better day than yesterday, but it was so boring at work - one of those days with nothing happening. At least I went some of the way of sorting the house out. During the afternoon I phoned Gilbert and my visit last night seems to have gone a long way towards helping him and it should go through smoothly now.
I got up at 8 a.m and had breakfast and decided to start off for work a little later than usual to get a straight run in. In fact I took the old couple from next door into the centre. After reaching work I did about four stories fairly early on and then set back to do very little for the rest of the day. I suppose those that I sent over justified my existence but I certainly didn't feel that I did.
At lunchtime I visited a few record shops looking for the new Barclay James Harvest and Harry Chapin albums but was unable to come across either. Did absolutely nothing in the afternoon and finally got away at 5.10 p.m. Ironically tomorrow when I intend going to Yorkshire I look like having trouble getting away with a contested juvenile case in the afternoon that might drag on.
Fought my way through the traffic and arrived at Bobs for tea. Shortly afterwards he announced we were going out to do a job. He is capable of being very blunt at times. The job was a pretty pleasant human interest type about a seven year old who had broken both his arms. It was an easy interview and half an hour later we were back home. I then spent the rest of the evening reading before going to bed.
Wednesday 7th June
Any day when I go back to Yorkshire makes it better than those days when I stay in Nottingham. In fact this was quite a busy day and at least at the end of it I felt I had earned my worth.
Got up at 8 a.m and, after listening to the news bulletins and breakfast, went into work. Had a slight diversion on the way to work. Bob had gone to have his car serviced and he wanted me to go along to see if he needed picking up. As usual his directions left much to be desired and I got lost before eventually finding the right way. Went into work from there and put over some early copy on last night's story. Then I had about six other small jobs to get out of the way very quickly before dashing to an inquest on Helen Carter. It was quite a short affair and I was back in the office in good time.
At lunchtime I went to the post office to post Mum's card for her birthday and then stayed in the office as it was raining. At 2.15 p.m went to the magistrates court for the juvenile case regarding the yob who attacked the defenceless widow. After shifting courts the case was adjourned and so it was a waste of time. One good thing was one of the solicitors made contact with me because he is in Round Table. Unfortunately it's Nottingham East which for me at Long Eaton would be right through the other side of Nottingham.
After that went back to the office and hung around until the Evening Post came out. I sent over a story from that and then left for Yorkshire. Arrived shortly after 6 p.m and had tea and ten settled down to watch the World Cup on television. That was Brazil v Spain, Sweden v Austria and Scotland putting in a very inept performance to draw 1-1 against Ian. At the end of all that the evening had gone all too quickly and it was time to go to bed.
Thursday 8th June
A really sterile day. At Beccles it used to be a matter of finding enough time for the work. Now it's a matter of finding enough work to fill in the time. I suppose I did about threequarters of an hour's work today. I don't know how long it's going to be before I need to get back into newspapers. Being in Yorkshire I had to get up at about 7.30 p.m and I set out for Nottingham at about 8 a.m. I don't think the car is too healthy at the moment. The radiator keeps emptying, the side light has gone and now the exhaust has come away from a bracket.
We will probably be going back to Norfolk in two weeks time and I hope to get it in with Paul for a general service. I arrived at the office at 9.30 a.m and there was absolutely nothing to do early on and I sat around until the post came in. Then got some lunch and ate it in the office before putting some copy over. Then had a long wander around town and finally spent my record token on the new Harry Chapin LP. The afternoon was absolutely empty and so at 4.45 p.m I decided to return to Bobs. Had tea and then ran Liz back into the centre where she was being met by Bob to do some shopping.
After coming back I rang up the people we are buying the house from and things do seem to be going more smoothly. Then I phoned Mum up and had a long chat which brightened me up considerably. After that spent the rest of the evening listening to records and reading.
Friday 9th June
If yesterday was quiet this was absolutely the opposite. It started off smoothly but from lunchtime became very busy. Up at 8 a.m to make my usual list of things that came up on the news. I am getting the hang of that. By listening to the 8 a.m news I can get hold of two or three small stories to keep them quiet. Today was different, however. One of the pick ups was about two 12-year-olds who had got hold of some whisky and got drunk and had to be saved by a couple of British Rail workmen. During the morning I tried to get something on that without much success and then at midday we were given the addresses at Sandiacre. So Bob and myself had to set off to scout around and that was the word.
We went round in ever increasing circles. Not my kind of reporting at all. I like to have everything cut and dried to have the address and the number and know where it is. In Beccles I knew just about where every road was. Now Nottingham is so big and it's a matter of continually asking people directions.
We had the addresses of the parents but neither were in except a sister. It was also a matter of going to phone boxes to ring into the office and also to check with the local bloke from the Mirror. That's another thing about this job, the bloody nationals are continually on at you and they expect results.
From there it was on to Toton Railway sidings to try and trace the guys that pulled the youngsters out. That meant going from department to department until I finally found them. Then it was further checks on the telephone and off to another job involving a crashed coach on the M1. That meant going to Sutton in Ashfield to find the coach at a garage. Then back to the office. Luckily I hadn't received a parking ticket although I had parked two hours over. Next thing was to send all the copy over and by the time I finished it was nearing 6 p.m. So I was late back to Yorkshire feeling very tired indeed. But it was a quick tea and off to see Sandra and Jim. We took them out for a drink at Sherbourne and spent quite a pleasant evening and by the time we had returned home and got to bed it was about midnight.
Saturday 10th June
The first of two pleasant days away from work. The next two weeks at Nottingham are likely to be awful and very tiring. Bob is away which means I will have to travel back and forth to Yorkshire. At least towards the end of that we should be somewhere near moving into our house.
I found it very difficult to wake up and in fact it was past 10 a.m when I got up. Spent the morning doing very little and then after dinner watched the sport on television before going to the sports centre to play badminton with Sandra and Jim. It was an enjoyable hour although none of us were really that good and badminton is certainly not my game. At the end had a shower and came home for tea.
The rest of the day was given over to football and the World Cup. We three matches on television live there was plenty to see. I watched France beat Hungary and West Germany draw with Tunisia. By the time that Italy and Argentina came on at 11.15 p.m I was rather tired, so I just watched part of it and then went to bed.
Sunday 11th June
After a few days of indecisive weather it was back to the sunshine today although I didn't feel very sunny inside. It's the thought of going to work again tomorrow. It's really horrible to live for weekends and hate Monday mornings and it's a position I have never been in before. I have completed four weeks at Nottingham and it seems more like four years. I really miss Beccles although I don't think it will really sink in until we actually get rid of our home. Then the ties will really be cut.
That's not to say that I regret the move because in the long run it will be a very good experience if I can stand it. It was a pretty quiet day really. Got up at 10 a.m and spent the morning watching the recording of yesterday's football matches in the World Cup and reading. Had the usual early dinner and then during the afternoon walked round to Les' to get some glue in an attempt to fix the exhaust which is hanging down rather. That didn't work but later in the afternoon Les came round and helped to fix it. That done had tea and then spent the entire evening watching the World Cup matches which meant Brazil beating Austria and Scotland putting up a good performance to beat Holland 3-2. By the end it was past 11 p.m when I went to bed.
Monday 12th June
It was a bloody infuriating day and job. For two or three hours early afternoon I sat around doing nothing intending to come home early after going to Long Eaton. Then something came up and by the time I got home it was 7.30 p.m. It feels very much at the moment like getting up, going to work, coming home and going to bed. No social or relaxing time at all.
Up at 7.30 a.m and set off at 8 a.m. There were plenty of roadworks on the A1 to slow me down and by the time I had dropped the daily pigeons I got into the office at 9.30 a.m. One or two things were quick to come up and they kept me busy until lunchtime. Then I had a nice surprise when Alan and Tony rang up from the Beccles and Bungay Journal and I had a nice chat with them and arranged to see them both in two weeks' time when we go home. Got a snack for lunch and then sat around hoping for a nice quiet time and early departure. But of course that wasn't to be. A story came through about a 16-year-old girl with a pacemaker who had run away from home. So I had to shoot off to Hucknall and get the story from the parents. A few months ago faced with a story like that I would have shied away, tried to palm it off on somebody else or ignored it. Now it comes as quite natural. In fact the parents were quite happy to chat and I got quite a good story which I phoned over from the nearest telephone box. I also had a snapshot to deliver to the wireman at the office which meant I had to drive back to Nottingham.
Left soon afterwards and drove out to Long Eaton to pick up some mail and also to see the woman and it looks as if she will be getting out in a week's time. That's quite satisfactory. After that I drove to Yorkshire and had tea and by that time the day was over and I went to bed fairly early on as I was very tired.
Tuesday 13th June
The worst day of the year so far because it was the day that everything I have been feeling over the past four weeks piled up and in the evening I felt so depressed it was ridiculous. The main reason was all that way to work and so little to do and then all the way home again. Talk about all work and no play. At least his Royal Highness J wasn't in today so that was one pain in the neck less to worry about.
Got up at 7.30 a.m feeling very tired and set off at 8 a.m, dropping off the pigeons before getting to the office at 9.30 a.m. There were about four things to do early on and that meant a number of phone calls. Then hung around the office until dinnertime before doing some shopping and going to the bank. Then spent a totally sterile afternoon doing nothing. I had an order for a court case from Radio Derby but I couldn't bring myself to do it and in the end I got out at just after 4 p.m making the excuse that I was going over to Long Eaton to sort out the house. I didn't of course but instead got home nice and early and had tea.
Then spent the evening watching television and generally feeling very miserable. The problem is I just don't know where I'm going at present. I am in a job that I hate and am frightened about what's going to happen in case I make the same mistake again.
Wednesday 14th June
A little better day on the surface and that's mainly because I didn't go into the office at all. Even then J managed to get right up my nose, although this time I have sorted out what I intend doing. Any more trouble from him and I intend giving him a mouthful. After all what the hell have I got to lose?
As I was going to Newark for a county court case involving a 12-year-old girl who says she has been sexually discriminated against because of being excluded from playing in a boys football league, I didn't have to go so early.
By the time I set off it was 8.45 a.m and I arrived in Newark by 10 a.m well in time for the hearing at 10.30 a.m. Parking was easy and I had no trouble finding the Town Hall. It started on time and at 11.30 a.m I rushed to the phone box to get some copy over. That was rather difficult as all the phone boxes were full and there was quite a nasty scene between two girls at one before I got through. Then back to the hearing and more copy over at lunch. Then got a sandwich and ate it in the car before having a walk around Newark which is a nice little place. Then back to the hearing and it went on until 4.15 p.m. More copy over and it was time to come home with a ring me in half an hour from J. Yes sir, no sir, three bags bloody full sir. I disregarded that and drove back to Knottingley and phoned him there from a telephone kiosk and the first thing he wanted to know was why I hadn't stopped at a service station and phoned. If he thinks I am going to jump at his every command he has got another think coming.
After that I spent the rest of the evening watching the World Cup on television. Another bad point came when Anne rang the house people and they are delaying their removal by another week. To say I am fed up at the moment is an understatement. The only thing is I have a feeling something is going to crack very soon.
Thursday 15th June
Had to go to Newark again today so it gave me the chance to have a lay-in and get up at 8.30 a.m. Started off at about 9 a.m and timed it perfectly, arriving at Newark at 10.15 a.m. It was just for the summing up of the little girl footballer case. The judge went on and on and on and very surprisingly found against the Football Association which could have many repercussions.
At the end I went to a telephone box and put over some copy before getting back to interview the people involved. Then put more quotes over and I was on my way back to Nottingham. The last thing J said was that I was to go over to Derby tomorrow at 4 p.m. Could this be a showdown?
Back in the office in time for dinner and I got a sandwich. Then there was absolutely nothing to do in the afternoon so I didn't bother and at 4 p.m decided to leave and walked out without informing anybody.
Then I came home and made good time although it was raining hard and driving was difficult. I was home by 6 p.m and spent the majority of the evening helping to put a carpet in one of the bedrooms. Then had a bath an watched television before going to bed at just after 10 p.m.
Friday 16th June
Life's a bloody funny game. Just when you think you are down and out something comes along to completely lift you. And today it came from a completely unexpected source, that is my visit to Derby.
The day looked like being a rotten one, however, as it was pouring with rain when we got up. Up in fact at 7.45 a.m, although I didn't mind going to Nottingham so much today as Anne was going with me. We arrived at 9.30 a.m and she set off quite soon afterwards for her job interview at West Bridgeford. I had a few things to do which almost took me up to the time when Anne returned. That was about 12.15 p.m and then we braved the pouring rain to get some dinner at a nearby restaurant. After that went on a shopping expedition which included buying a carpet and by the time we had finished it was 2.15 p.m.
Moved the car and did a telephone job for ATV before we left for Derby. By the time we had got the car parked and I had found the office it was 4.15 p.m. I didn't know what to expect as J took me into his office. Whatever it was, what he had to say shocked me. He congratulated me, said I was doing a good job and that yesterday's story on the girl footballer was better than any of the national stories. He was totally and comprehensively nice and agreed to pay removal fees, carpets and curtains etc at regular intrvals. So when I came out I was feeling in good spirits.
Drove home to Yorkshire, arriving at 6.45 p.m and spent a quiet evening apart from getting some fish and chips. Went to bed fairly early, feeling absolutely exhausted..
Saturday 17th June
Felt rather tired today and I expect its because of all the travelling of last week. Nevertheless it was another enjoyable Saturday of escapism from the job. Had a nice lay in and got up at 10.30 a.m for breakfast. Did very little during the morning and had the usual early dinner.
Then at 12.15 myself, Arthur and Anne set off for York races. We decided to try and miss out the traffic problems at Tadcaster and go by a country route. That meant we got stuck in York instead.
Nevertheless we got there well in time for the first race. It was a nice sunny afternoon and in the end between us myself and Anne only last about 60p. We left before the last race in order to get away before the traffic built up and the journey home was much easier and quieter. In fact it only took half an hour and we were back in time for tea. After that Anne went off for a kids concert at church and I had a bath and got ready to go out when she returned at 9 p.m.
We drove over to the Cocked Hat and met Sandra and Jim there. Stayed until 10.30 p.m before driving back to Knottingley. Went to the Chinese takeaway to get a meal and ate that before going to bed at 11.30 p.m.
Sunday 18th June
A weekend day and it was pretty miserable. I felt irritable and angry all day and Anne was in a similar mood, so we both ended up being nasty and grotty all day.
Had a lay in and got up at 10.30 a.m. Did very little in the morning, although I did help to wash the car. Then it was dinnertime and after that a quiet afternoon either reading or watching the Sunday cricket.
After tea Anne and myself had a blazing row, mainly because she reckoned we should have gone out during the afternoon and all I wanted to do was stay in. So the result was we drove up the A1 to Fairburn to look at the swans - what a pointless exercise just for the hell of it. So I stated what I thought of that and we turned straight round and came home to watch the Holland v West Germany World Cup match on television. At the end of that it was quite late and so we went to bed.
Monday 19th June
A bloody waste of time going to work today. It all amounted to driving over 100 miles to do about threequarters of an hour's work at the most. Up reluctantly at 7.30 a.m and set off for Nottingham at 8 a.m, arriving at 9.30 a.m. A call to Derby didn't reveal anything of note except a small follow up on a fire.
Then I did nothing until 12.30 p.m when I went out to get a morning paper and a sandwich for lunch. Then sent a couple of pieces over from the paper and made a couple of inquiries regarding coming court cases. Just when everything seemed to be completely dead I was sent out on a wild goose chase.
They had heard at Derby that the anti Nazi League was holding an evening march against the opening of a National Front shop. I tried all kinds of avenues of inquiry to try and find out some details and even walked into the city centre. But no luck and after all that buggering about it was after 5 p.m when I got away and that meant fighting against the rush hour traffic to get onto the M1. Indeed by the time I got home it was 6.30 p.m and by the time I had tea and watched some television the day was over and there was just time to have supper, a bath and go to bed.
Tuesday 20th June
It looks as if most of this week is going to be spent in the courts which is probably not a bad thing as I will get to know my way round them and it will keep me busy.
Today was a much more satisfying day than yesterday. I got up at 7.30 a.m and set off at 8. That will be one thing I will be glad to ditch. I really dislike getting up early. Arrived at the office at 9.30 a.m and shortly afterwards was told of an order from the Derby Telegraph for a court case at the Crown Court. It was a rape by a man on his ex-wife and so at 10.30 a.m I went to the Shire Hall and sat in until 11.30 a.m when I sent over some copy and then returned to the office.
What with a re-write of the case for the nationals and another story on the coming funeral for the police constable I found myself working through dinner, although I did have time for a quick snack and visit to the post office. At 3 p.m I returned to court to listen to some more evidence and then stayed until the adjournment at 4.30 p.m. I decided then to come home. A straightforward journey and I arrived in Yorkshire at 5.45 p.m. After tea spent a quiet evening watching television and it was just after 10 p.m when I went to bed.
Wednesday 21st June
There seems to be plenty of work this week and really it's only Monday when I have sat around doing nothing. Up again at 7.30 a.m and set off for work at 8 a.m, arriving at the usual time. I had intended going to court at 10.30 a.m to make sure of getting the verdict on the rape case. Of course that wasn't possible as there were three other stories that came up. All were slightly difficult because I couldn't get hold of the right people. By the time that was all done it was well past 11 a.m when I got to the Shirehall.
Luckily it was perfectly timed to catch the start of a new case on an attempted murder. I stayed listening to that for an hour and then went to put some copy over. Then returned to court for the decision on the rape case. Then went back to the office and got some lunch and then returned to court at 3 p.m just to see if anything was happening. Stayed until the adjournment and then went to the office and eventually got away at 4.30 p.m, hoping to avoid the rush hour.
Surprisingly I hit a lot of traffic and the journey home seemed to take longer than usual. It was 6 p.m when I arrived home and the World Cup matches were already on television. Had tea and then spent the entire evening watching television. I felt very tired and exhausted. All this travelling back and forth is probably taking its toll. Therefore it wasn't too late when I went to bed.
Thursday 22nd June
Life at present seems to be one long round of court work. Wasn't it me who not so long agao said I wanted to get away from courts? At least now I am dealing with decent cases such as murders and rapes and not excessive parking.
Up early and had trouble with the bloody car which wouldn't start. It took about 10 minutes. The thing really needs a service. Eventually got going and arrived in Nottingham about the usual time. Of course there were things to do before I got off to court and it was past 11.30 a.m when I got there. It was a continuation of the attempted Co-op shooting and at 1 p.m I put over some copy and then returned to the office.
Grabbed a sandwich and then sent some copy on the rape over to the News of the World. Then had a rest before returning to court at 3 p.m and staying until 4. Checked tomorrow's list and then made a few calls from the office before getting away at 4.45 p.m. The ridiculous thing was there was very little traffic on the road and I was able to get home by 6 p.m. Had tea and then had to go to the phone box to contact the Daily Express man about a court case tomorrow. Then spent the rest of the evening watching television and reading. Had a bath before going to bed.
Friday 23rd June
Yet more compliments today and this time surrounding my handling of two crown court cases. Up again at 7.30 a.m and after breakfast myself and Anne set out for Nottingham. There seemed to be less traffic around today and we arrived at 9.20 a.m. I made my police calls and then at 10.30 a.m went off to crown court. Two things to do there. Firstly the end of the Co-Op attempted murder and then the Clayton murder which turned out to be a very short guilty plea.
At the end I went to a phone box to put over some copy. In just one morning I sat through two murders and two life sentences. With that done I picked Anne up and we drove to Long Eaton to have another look at the house. It appears now that July 6th is the date for moving. From there we went to the nice pub on the way back to Nottingham and, although by that time it was well past 2 p.m, we were able to have a substantial meal. Arrived back in the office at 3 p.m. Anne went out shopping and I sat around. Jacoby phoned to say that my court copy was very good and a pleasure to sub. So it appears I am well and truly in his good books.
So I was quite happy when we left at 4.30 p.m to start the long drive to Norfolk. It was pretty straightforward and we arrived just before 8 p.m. A slightly depressing thing was the overgrown state of the garden. It seems strange coming back to the bungalow again after five weeks. Had some tea and made a few phone calls and at 10.30 p.m Joan, Peter and Martin arrived. They are just down for the night to take Rosemary home. By the time we got to bed it was well past 11 p.m.
Saturday 24th June
A really pleasant day and easily the best of a sad month. Unfortunately that's the sad thing because it was spent in Beccles re-meeting all the people we are leaving behind.
Got up at 8.30 a.m and had breakfast and just before 9 a.m we set off for Beccles. First thing was to meet Paul at the office so he could take the car in for a service. He arrived at 9.15 a.m during which time I went down to the hairdressers to try and get a cut, but it was too busy. Then did some shopping before going to Tonys where we stayed for quite a while chatting. From there it was on to the library and then I went to get my hair cut while Anne went to Gordon and Heathers.
It seemed an eternity before I got done and it was past midday before I was finished. Then I walked to Gordons and we had a light lunch with them befroe at 2.15 p.m walking to the hospital fete. It was the usual affair with the stalls all very much the same. Nevertheless there were plenty of people to talk to and the afternoon went pleasantly by. The only problem was that horrible feeling that very soon I will be detached completely from it all.
We left at just after 4 p.m and returned to Gordons and spent the rest of the afternoon playing indoor games. Then had a quick game of cricket outside before having a bath and getting ready to go out. We did that at 7.30 p.m and it was off to Lowestoft for a meal at Andrews' restaurant - good solid English food and plenty of it. We stayed there in fact until after 10 p.m and then drove back to Beccles. Picked the car up and drove home and went to bed feeling very tired indeed.
Sunday 25th June
Another day that went very quickly - but don't all weekend days? After last night's heavy meal I felt a bit seedy when I woke up and reluctantly got out of bed at 9.30 a.m and had breakfast in time for the people who are buying our house to come round. They came to sort out one or two minor details and had gone by 10.30 a.m.
Shortly afterwards we set out for Norwich on a roundabout route via the Ringsfield farm to pick some strawberries and gooseberries. By the time we reached Mums it was past midday. We had dinner and then at 3 p.m decided to see if Mike and Jeannette were in, but they weren't. Then went to Dennis Road to try to find Alan Edwards. Originally we had arranged to meet him at the hospital fete but he had contracted German Measles.
We couldn't find his house, but he must have seen us because shortly after getting back home he came round for a quick chat. After that spent the rest of the afternoon watching the Sunday cricket. Had tea and set off for Ellingham and arrived in time to watch the World Cup Final. It was a good game and ended with Argentina beating Holland 3-1 after extra-time. At the end I had a bath and went to be with the horrible thought of having to get up at 5.30 a.m tomorrow morning to return to Nottingham... Yuck ....
Monday 26th June
A most annoying day when nothing really seemed to go right. I hated getting up at 5.30 a.m but it had to be done. I also hated going back to Nottingham, but I had no say in that either. Set off at 6 a.m and arrived at 9.15 a.m after just stopping at Grantham to go to the toilet.
Felt depressed in Nottingham during the morning for two reasons. Firstly I won't be seeing Anne until Friday and secondly being back at Bobs I just feel that I am back to square one where I was five weeks ago. Problems also arose during the day over the house. Anne phoned on a number of occasions and it appears Gilbert is being awkward and not attempting too hard to get anything done quickly. Then there is a problem over a carpet and the whole thing is reaching farcical proportions.
Work wasn't much better as there was bugger all to do during the day and I think I did three minor stories. The rest of the time I just sat around feeling tired and lethargic. The one good things was I contacted the Long Eaton Round Table and they have given me a list of outdoor meetings and I think I will get stuck in over the next few weeks so as to give myself something to look forward to.
At dinnertime I had a sandwich in the office and came home to Bobs at 4.45 p.m. Had a very nice meal and then spent a quiet evening listening to music and reading and receiving numerous telephone calls from Anne about the house. Eventually went to bed fairly late at past 11 p.m.
Tuesday 27th June
A day pretty well of sitting around the office doing very little and then getting a nasty job towards the end of the day. That seems to be the case very often nowadays. As usual when I'm staying at Bobs I was awake early and got up at just after 8 a.m.
Had breakfast and then went into work shortly after 8.45 a.m. Spent an averagely busy morning on ore or two things and had a story to do for Radio ATV Birmingham. I had to go through to the news editor and found out it was Rob Kirk. He was with the EDP when I joined the firm and I had quite an enjoyable chat with him. At dinnertime I picked up a quick snack and ate it in the office and then thought the afternoon was going to be quiet. I had visions of coming home early until Derby came through wanting me and Bob to go and see the parents of a 16-year-old boy who died after a party. It was in a small village on the way to Mansfield. So I drove my car back to Bobs and he picked me up.
We had a little trouble finding it and when we did the father, not surprisingly, shut the door on us. That kind of thing doesn't worry me anymore. I suppose in time you get immune to such things. So I had a word with a neighbour and then we came home. Had tea and then a quiet evening mainly reading. I gave Anne a call at 9 p.m and at least the weekend is not too far away now. By the time I got to bed it was 10.45 p.m.
Wednesday 28th June
Another highly depressing day. The problem is of course that there is no let up at the moment. I dislike work and so the day is a wash out. Then the evenings are so boring. It's a far cry from the times when I couldn't find enough time to cram everything in. Now I sit and listen to the radio and miss watching Wimbledon on television and other things like that. It's a very sad life at the moment without Anne.
I started the day by listening in bed to the early news bulletins and putting some notes down to help me. Then got up and had a shower before having breakfast and setting off for the office at just before 9 a.m. Started the day by sending over some stuff from the early news and then sat around until 11.30 a.m when Bob and myself went to Arnold on a rather nice job. It was to see some quads and the parents were very co-operative. Indeed we stayed there for quite some time before going to the office and by that time it was time to get a quick snack for lunch and then go to the travel agents to pay for our air tickets. Role on October and our holiday. Then returned to the office and sent some copy over and then sat around for the rest of the afternoon.
Collected a late paper at 4.30 p.m and then phoned Derby to say I was going home. That is when I got a lecture on what I should have done with the quads story and how I missed a couple of stories in the Nottingham Post. It's his whole bloody attitude that's at fault and it was a struggle for me to be civil to him.
I then left and drove back to Bobs and had tea and then a boring evening on my own as he went to Newark for a job and Liz was working. Anne phoned at 8 p.m and I was pretty miserable and untalkative on the phone. I shouldn't be like that to her because it only depresses her as well. At least the house seems to be coming along smoothly now. After the wasted evening I went to bed at past 11 p.m.
Thursday 29th June
Another most depressing day, but aren't they all at the moment? The only ray of hope is that the weekend is nearly here. Got up at the usual time for Nottingham after listening to the news. Went into the office after breakfast and started by working on the radio stuff and soon had that put over. Worked fairly steadily though the morning and everything seemed to be running smoothly when J rang up. I got one up on him when he told me that I should put over some early copy from the radio and I told him I had done. Then he blackmailed me. He was referring to my application for lodging and travelling expenses. I had claimed £70 and his words were most objectionable.
He said that he was thinking about them because I was paid to use my brain and at present they were having to do my thinking for me. In other words if I work well he will pay my expenses. I'm not prepared to play him at that game especially over £70.
At least during the day I got one or two things sorted out and next weeks going to be a busy one- both socially and in moving. I had a quick snack at dinner time and then drove over to Long Eaton to take some forms that have to be signed. It looks as if everything is at last going smoothly. Arrived back in the office just before 3 p.m and did a little work before leaving at 5 p.m and driving back to Bobs. By the time I got there I felt rather feverish and exhausted. So after tea I had a rest and spent a quiet evening reading and listening to music and feeling rather bored.
Phoned Anne up and had a chat and it wasn't particularly late when I went to bed. Two other disappointing things today were the return of our visa forms without the visas because we hadn't complied with all the stupid regulations. Also received my pension cheque for £389 which is less than I expected. I suppose someday something will gain go right.
Friday 30th June
Felt like a messenger boy today. I did two jobs and got absolutely no satisfaction out of them at all. Up at the usual time and, after packing all my stuff up, I set off for the office. Quite honestly I hoped for a quiet day so that I could get off to Norfolk nice and early. Things seemed to be going quietly until about 11 a.m when I got a call from Derby saying that Eric Varley the industry minister was opening a new factory at Alfreton and I was needed to go out there and get a few quotes about the steel crisis.
I had one or two things to do before going and they included going to the electricity showroom to get our supply at Long Eaton transferred. Eventually I set off for Alfreton which is just off the M1. Luckily a phone call to the factory gave me very good directions of how to get there. I arrived at 12.20 p.m and Varley was running over an hour late. So I had a completely boring look round the concrete block factory and then returned to a large marquee to wait for him.
Luckily John Andrews was there so at least I had somebody to chat to. Eventually it got underway and at the end there was a short press conference. At the end I drove back towards Nottingham and arrived at 2.30 p.m. Got a quick sandwich and then put over some copy. The next job was worse.
A five page letter for What's Life had arrived and I had to take it round to Radio Nottingham. I'm a journalist not a messenger boy. By the time I got back from that there was just time to get another small job done and then I decided to leave off and set off for home. The drive was long and tedious thanks to considerable traffic and terrible weather. I eventually arrived at 8.15 p.m and had tea and then spent the evening watching television and going to bed fairly early.