April 2013

1930′s: Michael Winner: ‘I was an only child and very lonely’

I thought this was an interesting glimpse into a ‘famous’ only child’s life! How many of us like Michael want to hold on to the things in our childhood which gave us enjoyment and meaning. I find it hard to let go some of the things from my childhood especially now my parents are dead. Holding onto those memories via objects which I grew up with seems very important. I wonder if others feel the same? Christopher Middleton’s interview with the film director explains why he is parting with his cherished collection of children’s book illustrations. So what made the famously hard-boiled Winner go gooey over pictures of sprites, fairies and bears? It’s not a matter of getting older: he is 76 now but the collecting started back in 1984, when he was in his pugnacious prime. “I suppose,” he says, after some reflection, “that by buying this children’s art and having it on my walls, I have been doing what I have done my entire [...]

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Jenni Murray: The lifelong pain of being a ‘lonely only’

As it’s revealed one-child families will soon be the norm, JENNI MURRAY mourns the sibling she never had. By Jenni Murray His name is David Robert and he’s my baby brother. He was born only last night. This was my boast to the school dinner ladies. But the truth was that I didn’t have a baby brother — a lie that was humiliatingly revealed when my mother turned up to a school function that night and was teased for having a pregnancy that had never shown. The next day I faced the full force of her fury. I was smacked for telling such a whopper, denied a month’s pocket money and grounded for two weeks (child psychology in Barnsley was, I fear, in its infancy in the Fifties).  But the truth was, at the age of seven, I desperately wanted a brother (David Robert was the name I would have [...]

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