To mark his abridgement of this groundbreaking novel for Radio 4’s A Book at Bedtime, Sid Chaplin’s son, playwright and screenwriter Michael Chaplin, will lead a literary walk through the setting of the novel – Sandyford, Shieldfield and the Ouseburn Valley. Published 50 years ago and set during the era characterised by Prime Minister Harold Macmillan’s phrase, ‘you’ve never had it so good’, the novel tells the story of Arthur Haggerston, educational no-hoper and budding tearaway, as he leaves school, dabbles with the confusing business of sex and enters the world of work, struggling to find a moral compass as the old working-class culture of east Newcastle begins to crumble around him. Universally praised by the critics and most recently published by Newcastle’s Flambard Press and now available as an eBook, the novel is many things: sharp, funny, deeply humane and a brilliant representative of the city and its people on the cusp of profound industrial and social change. Michael Chaplin will talk about and read from the book on the walk and offer insights into the life of his father, who lived nearby and died 25 years ago, and the process of adapting the book. Copies of the book will be available for sale at the end of the walk.
The book is serialised on A Book at Bedtime from Monday-Friday, 19-23 September at 22.45 and is read by Joe Caffrey.
To book places on the walk, email or phone Flambard Press on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01912333865.
Please meet at the Dobson Gates, Old Jesmond Cemetery, Jesmond Road (south side) at 2pm, Sunday 25th of September.