The Lake District is considered to be one of the most beautiful places in Britain. I have been lucky enough to live there twice. The first time was when my father got a job as a general manager in an electrical business in 1965, when I was eight years old. At first we lived in the town of Windermere, before moving to Bowness-on-Windermere in 1967, which is where Lake Windermere is located. I suppose I took the beauty of the place for granted as a child. It's only now I look back and think, it was a special place. I spent many hours with my father on Lake Windermere. Dad had a few boats between 1967 and 1971. Two of them were speed boats and he taught me how to drive them from the age of ten. When I reminisce I know I was privileged, because not many youngsters get to do exciting things like this, and also because I had quality time with my father. These memories live on and are very precious to me, because my dad died in 1987 aged just 51.
We left Windermere in 1975, it was only a short move to a place called Staveley about 4 miles away from Windermere. I moved several times after that and thought I would never go back to live in the Lake District.
However, in November 1984 I returned to Bowness to run a very nice guest house with my parents. By this time I was married and had a 2 year old daughter. Between 1984 and 1987 we met a lot of very nice people from all over the world. It was ideal for me because I worked in the family business, but also had quality time with my daughter in the afternoons. Usually we would go down to the pier in Bowness and feed the swans and ducks, and on the way back I would take Julia (Victoria) to the swings.