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About the book
  • Published: 15 April 2011
  • ISBN: 9781849901529
  • Imprint: BBC Books
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 352
  • RRP: $22.99

When I Was a Nipper

The Way We Were in Disappearing Britain




Alan Titchmarsh looks back to 1950s Britain to see what we can learn for our lives today

In When I Was a Nipper Alan Titchmarsh goes on a personal and nostalgic journey through post-War Britain in search of treasured values and traditions that were once the soul of society. With characteristic wit, warmth and humour he draws on the experience of his own childhood, and also takes a broader perspective, creating a wonderfully detailed and evocative portrait of a way of life that is fast disappearing, and asks what can we learn from this era of austerity to make our lives better today?

Born in Yorkshire in 1949 and brought up in a Britain still recovering from the Second World War, Alan remembers a time of relative calm, when it was enough to return home at night knowing that the house would still be standing. We were known throughout the world for our patience, resourcefulness and resilience. ‘Mustn’t grumble’ was almost a national catchphrase, and queuing was second nature. Illustrated throughout with over 200 wonderful archive photographs, When I Was a Nipper takes us back to those days, down high streets and through farmyards, on to trolley buses and into local pubs.

As we move towards a global economy, as communities fragment and customs are lost, When I Was a Nipper captures a world that is fast receding into history. It’s powerfully nostalgic for those who remember those days, but it’s also Alan’s timely call to all recession-hit Brits to heed the lessons of austerity Britain: ‘make do and mend’; ‘look on the bright side’ and ‘take the knocks on the chin’.

  • Pub date: 15 April 2011
  • ISBN: 9781849901529
  • Imprint: BBC Books
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 352
  • RRP: $22.99

About the Author

Alan Titchmarsh

Originally trained at Hertfordshire College of Horticulture and Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Alan Titchmarsh is the author of over 40 books about gardening, including How to be a Gardener Book 1: Back to Basics, the fastest-selling of all time in the genre, and the bestselling The Kitchen Gardener: How to Grow Your Own Fruit and Veg. He writes for BBC Gardeners' World Magazine, and is gardening correspondent for the Daily Express and Sunday Express. He has presented Gardeners' World, the annual coverage of The Chelsea Flower Show and Nature of Britain, and has his own daily chatshow.

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