Troubador Shandy on Sunday

Released: 28/10/2017

ISBN: 9781788038782

Format: Paperback

Review this Book

Shandy on Sunday


Were you a 'baby boomer' or know of one? Did you grow up in post-war Britain? Have you ever been to Yorkshire? Then this book is for you. This story describes life in Yorkshire in the 1950s and 1960s from knitted swimsuits, outside toilets, frost on the windows - on the inside, through the birth of rock 'n' roll and the Beatles craze.

It charts the growth of Harrogate as a spa and subsequent changes. The author's granddads were in the First World War in India and the Italian Front, and her dad was in many theatres of war, including Anzio in the Second World War. The characters in her family are described. Her grannies were as different as chalk from cheese. Granny Wardman bleached her hair with neat peroxide, dabbed on her rouge, then set forth into town. Granny Hodgson was bent like a boomerang, had long white hair, wore grey and brown and thick lisle stockings.

Saturday morning pictures, and queueing for the cinema to see The Dam Busters and Reach for the Sky was commonplace before the boom era of television. 1960 brought a trauma to the family, and life was never the same.

Many events of the time are included, such as the Queen's coronation, President Kennedy's assassination, The Moors Murders, the 1966 World Cup, and the Aberfan Disaster. Scarlet fever, polio, tuberculosis, mumps and measles was common, and it was the era of 'wonder drugs' the Pill and Thalidomide. 

It is full of humour, pathos and little-known facts. There are lots of 'Wow! I didn't know that!' moments.

'Shandy on Sunday' had a book launch at the local library at the end of November 2017. Featured guest on BBC Radio Berkshire interviewed by Bill Buckley 5th February 2018. Great feedback so far includes many comments of 'loved your book','couldn't put it down', 'it's a history lesson', 'lovely book which brought back many memories', 'brilliant book','you must have done a lot of research', 'some of your memories are my memories', 'I truly loved your book and hope to visit some of the places' - the last comment from Florida!

The title reminded me of my childhood days, it was fascinating to take a trip down memory lane. Almost like flicking through an old photo album, I remembered trips out with my grandparents, the clothes I wore in the fifties, school days and felt a sense of nostalgia. I enjoyed the historical context and the way the author mentioned important events both in Britain and the world. Although I am not a northerner, I have visited Harrogate and the surrounding area and found the book was informative and interesting. A great read by a very talented author.

by Julia Eversham

I loved this book, it reminded me so much of my own childhood in North Yorkshire - so many of the little thIngs that I had forgotten from all those years ago. How times have changed! Christine brings in humour, but also sadness into her book.

by Ruth S

A good read for anyone who grew up in Yorkshire in the 50's and 60's. Lots of nostalgia - and some pathos too.

by Margaret Beech

An excellent read; The author brings the sixties back to life, and some wonderful anecdotes.
One of those books that you don't want to end.

by Len Barley

Firstly, Christine is my cousin. That having been said I was amazed at the research see has done to craft this brilliant book.

I learned so much about my own family, mainly I left Harrogate at two and a half years of age and my knowledge of the Town was limited to the annual visit to see Granny Hodgson.

I could see the passion behind the words and the intimate history of her growing up into a fine wife mother, grandmother and cousin.

Thanks Christine for introducing me to the Brooke Brother, “I ain’t gonna-wash for a week” (1961).

by John Hodgson

Although I grew up in Glasgow and not Yorkshire this book brought back so many memories!
So many things were just the same.
The historical content was so well researched and fascinating It must have taken hours and hours.
A really good read - funny,sad,informative and intriguing.

by Anne Ferrier

So enjoyed this book- coming from Harrogate and growing up in the same area as the author (and attending the same grammar school) it really resonated with me. Interesting bits of history from the local area linked to the author tracing her family and national and world events too which occurred during the 40s, 50s and 60s. I would recommend this book to anyone who grew up during these decades.

by Christine Toulson

A really enjoyable read and highly recommended. Brings to life what living in Harrogate through the decades was like. Touching personal events both happy and sad shows Christines talent for mixing autobiographical and social history together. As a former Civil Servant myself I loved the stories from the old National Savings Office in Harrogate.

by Steve Fletcher

Well-researched and well-written: this is a lovely family story, set against the backdrop of major world events. Christine has brought her family members to life: I feel that I know them, foibles and all, including Granny's perfume! I'm a similar age to Christine (maybe slightly older!) and her book brought back memories of my own childhood. A very entertaining piece of social history.

by Mary

A fascinating read. Christine’s autobiography and family history are set in their social and political context. Being of a similar age it evoked many memories even down to the Austin A40 car! What a lot of research went into this well written book.

by Jenny Bryce

The thing that drew me to Shandy On Sunday was it's title which intrigued me and made me want to find out it's relevance and significance. I am really glad that I read the book which is a semi autobiographical account of the meaningful events and relationships in the author’s life during the 1950s and 1960s with particular emphasis on her relationship with her father whom she clearly adored. I particularly liked her description of her grandparents particularly her paternal grandmother who must have been amazing company for a young girl.
I would imagine that I am of a similar age to the author, Christine Dodsworth, and come from a similar working class background as I identified with a house with no heating and an outside toilet. I also vividly recall the life changing impact of rock and roll and my almost fanatical love of the Beatles. I too clearly remember the main events that Christine recalls such as JFK’s assassination, the Aberfan disaster and, of course, England winning the 1966 World Cup.
The other aspect of the book which I found quite fascinating was the clever way that the author catalogues the changes that have taken place to her beloved Harrogate over the years and how she highlights the charm of the spa town. It actually made me want to visit and experience the town myself.
And, finally, what about that title. Well it comes from the special treat that the author, as a young girl, would have every Sunday whilst waiting for the roast dinner to cook. She and her beloved Dad would share a bottle of beer in glass with lemonade on top, Clearly a very fond memory.
All in all, the book is a really enjoyable and and nostalgic read which would particularly appeal to ‘baby boomers’.

by Jack Tocock

This book was an excellent read.

I arrived in Nottingham, England from Port of Spain,Trinidad in 1964 aged 11 and reading my friend Christine’s wonderfully contextualised history of her childhood has filled in the gaps and linked up so much of what I found when I arrived.

I urge everyone to read this book whether it be to remind us of those times or to marvel at how much has changed since then!

by Dawn Devenish

I really enjoyed this book. It was very nostalgic and brought back many memories from my childhood. A good read.

by Sandra Provan

Christine  Dodsworth

Harrogate born and bred, Christine was educated at Harrogate Grammar School before becoming a Civil Servant in her early career. Retirement gave her more time to pursue her hobbies of writing, painting, family history and exercise among other pastimes. What fun!

Christine Dodsworth, author

Book launch in local library
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