Saturday's Child is a mother's story of how she learned to understand her much-loved elder child who was somehow 'slightly different'.
On the walls hang countless iron intricacies, from poppies to leaves, and the forge burns a glorious gold. Knockers and lockers scatter the secret shack and as I walk around, bewildered and bewitched, I ask myself: How did I not know about this?
That was my first experience visiting Pete Clutterbuck’s designer blacksmith’s and I was on a mission to find out what he does, why he does it and why he loves Portsmouth so much.
I was greeted by a man, dusted in soot, smiling cheerfully, as I offered my hand for him to shake. “I’m Pete,” he told me as he toured me around his impressive work space.
Pete showed me sketches and sculptures, proving to me that iron-work is very much alive and breathing. From work on HMS Victory to the Southsea bandstand, railings and gates; he has designed and forged countless treasures within the city.
Heavily influenced by nature, his work oozes with skill and talent, which he taught himself in the 1970s. Everything from latches to large ornamental poppies, burst with the same character and energy as he does. Pete told me how everything he does is to satisfy his customers.
“Everything I make goes out of the door and people are happy with it,” he smiled. “It’s terrific when I see people love it, own it.”
Peter Clutterbuck is a perfect example of why Portsmouth people are some of the best. An incredible inspiration, this man will feature in our book, Uniquely Portsmouth. And, for good reason too.
Setting sail for your bookshelves, Uniquely Portsmouth is a homage to what makes Portsmouth great. And, of course, Peter Clutterbuck is a fundamental part of that.
Retired clerical officer, Peter Youngs' first book has turned his great ambition into a life-changing legacy. Now on its third reprint.....
Long-distance walking enthusiast, Peter Youngs completed the walk from Land's End to John O'Groats over a period of three years and seven months, setting out in his spare time, often catching the first train from Cosham at 6.15am to return to the exact spot at which he had finished the last leg. He refused to take ferries across estuaries, walking inland until he could cross rivers. Using various National Trails including Offa’s Dyke, West Highland Way, South West Coast Path, as well as some rather circuitous routes and deviations, Peter clocked up a grand total of 2,470 km (1,535 miles).
Not only did Peter realise his great ambition of completing this iconic walk, he also meticulously recorded every moment, emotion, meal and snack of his epic journey in several A4 notebooks.
As Peter is computer illiterate, he approached Tricorn Books with his hand-written A4 notebooks and his ideas of turning them into a book. We promptly started on the rest: typing up his manuscript, proof-reading, editing, illustrating, designing and laying out the work.
Having spent considerable time and effort in his achievement, Peter wanted to produce a book, the quality of which was commensurate with his achievement. We all agreed that a hardback book, with dust jacket and illustrations, on a soft-textured paper, in black only would do just that. It would as be affordable and cost effective.
A delightful read, this new title is out now, priced £14.95. Initial inquiries through this website.
A man who gives a good account of himself is probably lying since any life when viewed from the inside is simply a series of defeats. George Orwell
The experience of eighty years – denied for too many forebears, victims of battlefield, illness or other distress – engenders profound gratitude. There is the opportunity to reflect on disagreements, difficulties and mistakes, attempting to follow George Orwell’s intimation above. The author would welcome discussion on any of the issues in his books.
Unaware of past paternal family accomplishments by Balfours and Ogilvies, who set out from Fife to found enterprises in Chile and North America in the middle of the nineteenth century, by Smarts in the London world of music and by Figdors and Joachims (also musical and helped by Wittgenstein cousins), who left Pest after the Danube floods in1838, the author found himself tussling with the ideas of other relatives.