Troubador Planes, Passports and Porkie Pies – Slice One

Released: 28/04/2016

ISBN: 9781785891571

eISBN: 9781785895937

Format: Paperback/eBook

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Planes, Passports and Porkie Pies – Slice One

Stirring Tales of UK Border Control (but not as shown on TV)

by

“This book is written for all those men and women, of every rank and some now dead, who laboured, wholly unsung, often abused and largely in vain, in the United Kingdom’s old Immigration Service to maintain the country’s border controls...”

Mike Clarke worked for 18 years in Immigration Control in London’s larger airports, the last 9 as a Chief Immigration Officer. In his time there, he encountered every scenario you could imagine – and some you’d never dream of! Planes, Passports and Porkie Pies – Slice One details the ups and downs of his working life: queues and crises, joy and despair, cock-ups, punch­-ups, forgers, robbers, liars, lovers, thugs, drugs and always the poorest of the poor.

“‘Wait,’ I hear you ask in probable shocked disbelief when you’ve read on a bit, ‘can these stories really be true?’ Well, all I can say is that every tale – barring a number of minor changes to protect both the innocent and the part-guilty, not least myself – is as accurate as my fallible memory allows.”

Join Mike as he recounts just some of his more memorable moments, from a man wearing a suit filled with £80,000 cash to his part in the truly shocking sudden death of the Russian Atomic Clock.

Planes, Passports and Porkie Pies is a hilarious memoir that will particularly appeal to those familiar with the immigration sector, as well as anyone who has ever suffered at the hands of mindless bureaucracy.

"Absolutely brilliant, hilarious...a very funny book."
– Bill Padley, Talk Radio Europe

That's Books and Entertainment

Thoroughly enjoyed. Entertaining, thought provoking, a little heartbreaking

by Johanna


Very funny book, haven't seen Mike in several years, good to see he can still tell a good story, even if some parts are very poignant.

by barry T


As an SB man who worked for many years with IB I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I actually laughed out loud frequently. To the author, a very good read, thankyou.

by Mick hurst


This is a slice that truly whets the appetite for more. Mike provides an hilarious and nostalgic insight into a Service that, sadly, has long since disappeared.

This is a thoroughly good read and I look forward to devouring (second slice) Mike's continuing account of subsequent roles and experiences in the intensely challenging spheres of after entry and anti-terrorism.

by JS


Mike Clarke

Job-wise, most of what I choose readily to recall, whether with pleasure or with pain, is already in the 2 Slices, although there's a bit more of domestics in the novel 'Dog Strap Five' (Vol.1 soon I hope to be published, and Vol.2 about to be written).

Otherwise, I have enthusiastically re-embraced general, idle, swanning around - barring my dog,no-one swans more successfully, more generally or more idly than me - and my only vague current concern, arguably not before time, is my health, which I think is best described like this.

Heart (attack, then triple by-pass), stroke (but only mini), diabetes (but only borderline), and now liver (though fuck knows what exactly, because they're still working on it) don't particularly worry me, because they're only practices for Death.

What does, just a tad (worry me, I mean) is that any day now, all that practice will suddenly prove bloody perfect, but that's life.

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