Posts Tagged ‘great grandfather’

Working with my Great Grandfather

Friday, July 3rd, 2015

Two weeks ago, I started yet another role within the City of Subiaco. This time, not only did I move desk, I also moved office to the other side of Rokeby Road. The council rents an office space in a strange orange clad building that from the outside appears to wish it was located in the mediterranean. It has an internal atrium space with a balcony and the front windows dream of housing a fair maiden.

In reality it has been divided into clunky offices, some of which can only be accessed via stairs and it has some serious heating issues.

230 Rokeby Road

230 Rokeby Road

Despite all of this, I am feeling a very odd sense of pride working here because in the years around 1918, my great grandfather and great grandmother lived at 230 Rokeby Road. Obviously their house wasn’t this ridiculous office block and was most likely a very small cottage with not a lot surrounding it, but every day as I walk into work and see the number on the letter box I wonder how on earth this happened.

I very much doubt that William thought, “In 100 years time, my great granddaughter is going to monitor the City of Subiaco’s Twitter accounts from my lounge room.” And on my return from Manchester, I didn’t expect to work in his old house. Yet somehow this has happened and once again William and I have crossed paths three generations apart.

I also bet he didn’t think that Advanced Hair would be operating from his second storey and that these good looking fellas would be hanging on the wall.

Advanced Hair, yeah yeah.

Advanced Hair, yeah yeah.

Remembrance Sunday

Sunday, November 10th, 2013

Today is Remembrance Sunday – the more family friendly day to mark the end of World War I and to remember those who fought for us. While I still plan on having my one minute silence tomorrow at 11am, I headed to the parade this morning. It dawned on me that this would be particularly poignant for me as on this day 95 years ago, my great grandfather, William, was in the French countryside fighting for the Allies. He grew up in Salford not far from where I am now living and moved to Perth in his early 20s. In 1918 he returned to England and was then sent to France to fight.

William kept a diary throughout that year making short comments each day about the voyage by ship to England and then his experiences during the war. On this day 95 years ago (interestingly it was also a Sunday) he wrote:

“Nothing much doing today. We are out of range of sounds of gun fire & all is peace. “

On the 11th, his entry is:

“Germany accepted our armistice terms today & I think this puts “finni” to him.”

A fabulous, witty statement that shows great insight into a man I never met. I like to believe that he and I share a love for words as well as having moved to the other side of the world to live in each other’s home towns.