“Black and White and Read All Over” tells the story of the life of Norman Leonard Coates Junior, known other than for “Legal Requirements” as Len Coates, who was born on 24 April 1939 in the mining village of Cambois in Northumberland.
The book follows in chronological order how his life has consistently reflected the colours of “Black and White” from being born just before the Second World War in a village dominated by a coal mine, his great lifetime passion for Newcastle United Football Club and living in Zambia.
It traces through full time education, the subsequent Professional Qualifications obtained and through his career in full time employment to and including retirement.
The remaining part of the book’s title “Read all Over” reflects his great passion for travel in particular taking his family, wife now of over fifty years Pauline, daughter Lesley and son Anthony to live for two years in Zambia in Central Africa.
Travel undertaken is covered in chronological order in a number of the parts of the book. In particular as well as worldwide travel, special mention is made regarding visits to North America, Australia and India, as each of those three have been visited many times!
After retiring from full time employment, the book covers writing of travel stories in newspapers and magazines and his three travel books.
As revealed early in the book it is dedicated in particular to the four grandchildren. They were the driving force for it to be written. That was because I knew almost nothing of the lives of my grandparents. Three had passed away before my birth and the fourth, mother’s father died when I was still very young.
The grandchildren are still young. Caitlin is eleven, Ciaran and Ben are eight and Layla five years old. Copies of the book will be given to them so that as they can read about the lives of their grandparents. They will also find some details about their parents when they were young.
Caitlin, Ciaran and Ben are already very proficient readers. Caitlin in particular has already told me about reading some parts of my travel books. Her lovely comments were about how she had “travelled” to many lovely parts of the world with her Grandad and Grandma!
However, as Caitlin and the others get through my travel books there are some surprises in store for them. All are included in quite a few of the stories when actually they had travelled with Grandad and Grandma!