PEOPLE

Louisa Hawker

Robin Mills met Louisa Hawker at her home in Salwayash, Dorset ‘I’m a Dorset person, born and bred. I was born in the old Dorchester maternity hospital, Somerleigh Court, quite some time after my older brother and sister. We were brought up on a farm just outside Beaminster, and I had a glorious childhood of farm animals, ponies and dogs. My father was something of an experimental farmer, and went to Cambridge to study agriculture. He then went to India, to teach farmers how to grow pineapples—in the middle of Calcutta racecourse—and ...

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Nik Ryan

Julia Mear met Nik Ryan in Seaton ‘I was born in Stockport near Manchester. When I was seven we relocated to Henley-on-Thames with my dad’s work in IT. This was around the time I started picking up the guitar and messing around with it. No-one in my family ever owned an instrument, but a neighbour ended up giving me a guitar. I’d probably seen The Monkees on TV and would have been emulating that on a broom handle or something similar. I had an elder brother Paul, 8yrs older than me, ...

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Matilda Temperley

‘I grew up at Burrow Hill, near Huish Episcopi, on my family’s cider farm, a carefree and creative early life. My siblings (Alice, Mary and Henry) and I had what people sometimes describe as a feral childhood, but we would all consider idyllic. We were always involved in anything happening on the farm. Aside from helping out with farm jobs we used to cause all sorts of trouble, which seemed to be tolerated as long as it was outside. We would spend hours roaming the moors, and at the farm ...

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Peter Whiteman

Julia Mear met Peter Whiteman in Axminster, Devon ‘I was born in 1942 during the war. My father was a carpenter in a jig shop of the de Havilland Aircraft Company. My mother was a nurse but if you married you had to give up nursing. They moved from Worthing to Bognor Regis during which period I was born. We lived there until I was nine, my father’s work took us to Drayton on the outskirts of Portsmouth. By then I had a brother and sister; David and Candy. I went ...

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Janie Prince

“I was born in Teddington, Middlesex—perhaps as a celebration of the end of the war! My three siblings were all pre-war and much older. From an early age I loved nature and that is a theme that remains throughout my life. I can remember being small enough to look up into the flowers of foxgloves and waiting for the bees to come. I loved each autumn gathering the apples and later turning the compost and getting out the little wiggly red worms with my father. We lived beside Bushey Park, ...

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