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ISBN 9781786153944

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By Geoffrey B.Lewis

In the 1950’s, as rubbled landscapes of Britain were cleared for new towns to grow out of the devastation, those post war years formed an exciting playground back drop where life for kids became a continuous adventure; free to roam and explore back lane alleyways, local woodland and the beckoning world as long as they were home before dark.

Bernard Andrew remembers the 1950's through a cavalcade of anecdotes and stories recounting some of his boyhood friedships, exploits and misadventures unaware of Swansea’ dirty secret.

It is the active operating base for a sinister programme of industrial sabotage and when a school chum unexpectedly disappears without trace after a night time prank on the beach, leaving an empty house behind, he doesn’t understand why and wonders if he will ever see him again.  

Over fifty years are to pass before fate intervenes to help solve the riddle. But will he be able to live with the devastating answers when he discovers them?


Early life and introduction to radio and schooldays

Playing in the park, climbing trees and rules of play

Cowboys and Indians, Robin Hood, King Arthur, cops and robbers

Lingering influence of the war years

Saturday morning cinema club and its heroes

Books, comics, collecting stuff and a reason to be Welsh

Six shooters from father Christmas and the pomegranate conspiracy

Meccano, model air-planes and aircraft identification

The new house and district and the changing face of entertainment

Rogue preachers and the lady in red, kidnapped by ‘THE BAPTISTS’

Football and cricket, a pain in the neck and a visit to the dentist

James Bond’s bike shop, trolley building and scrap yards

Rags for bargain, any old rags and escape from the back-street boys

Smokers club and first encounters with the boys in blue,

Secrets, sudden death and friends that go missing

Fishing in ponds and a “mentor” who says he battles with sea bass

The great clay worm dig and a heroic rescue

Smokey ‘le cat’ goes on rooftop walkabout and repays a debt of honour

Trouble with torches, church parade and painting the scout hut red

The teenage years of Rock and roll and driving dad nuts

Exploring dockland, all things mechanical and rebuilding the town

Diligent  years at the Tech’, long suffering staff and School trips

Shakespeare and the fading Bunsen flame

Attention all shipping and a mission for ‘ALPHA ONE

On the beach, discovery and pursuit

A relentless hunt and an empty house

Contact lost and the passing years

A foreign land, a crowded place and a brief encounter

Seek and ye shall find - a lifetime turned to dust

How could we have known? How could anyone have known?