Sepia Saturday encourages bloggers to
o record their family history through photographs.
When I saw this prompt of men reading newspapers and the breaking news of the day, I knew immediately which photograph I would feature - one of my father.
Dad was an avid reader of newspapers and also had a strong interest in journalism and politics. He left school at 14 years old and was a self-taught man. He was unashamedly Conservative, reader of "The Daily Telegraph", admired the Queen, Winston Churchhill and Margaret Thatcher and was a member of the local constituency party helping at fund raising events, delivering election leaflets etc. He often wrote letters to the local newspaper on political issues - much to the concern of my mother who did not like the verbal brickbats that he could receive.
We were a family who always listened to the news (radio in the morning and TV in the evening), and watched major events ranging from the Queen's Coronation, Royal Weddings, and Sir Winston Churchill's funeral, to the building of the Berlin Wall, Cuban crisis, space missions returning to earth and the shooting of President Kennedy
Along with Dad, I was politically informed - but no activist. I followed the course of General Election campaigns and results and remember one year marking up with coloured pencils an election map in red and blue (Labour & Conservative) with occasional yellow for Liberals.
Frustratingly I had to wait quite a time to exercise my own vote - I was 21 just after one election and had to go another 4-5 years before having the next opportunity. I did attend some hustings in the days when candidates actually tried to meet the public and once went late at night to hear the results announced from the Town Hall balcony - and that sums up my political activities. Wearing a duffel coat was the closest I came to student rebellion!