In "A Canterbury Childhood", Kenneth Pinnock tells how, as a child, he came to explore and try to understand the little city into which he had been born just after the end of the first World War. It begins in the shadow of the Victorian age, in a gas-lit house still equipped with speaking tubes for communication between floors, with the thousand-year-old cattle market just outside the front door, and abundant evidence that the age of horse-drawn traffic is only just ending. But beneath the tradition-bound and outwardly placid surface, powerful forces are at work...Vividly recalled, and fortified by delving into local newspapers, this is a picture of the patterns of life, changing under the stress of new technologies and marketing strategies, in a small English town three generations ago.
Kenneth Pinnock was born in Canterbury and lived there almost all his life. After a spell of teaching, he became a publisher of schoolbooks, a career which has gained the distinction (unusual and perhaps unique for one still living) of being summarized in The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. In 2006 he received a Civic Award from the Lord Mayor and Council of Canterbury for his work as 'teacher, historian, author and activist in many voluntary organizations'.
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