‘Reporting For Duty’

‘Courage and Commitment’ was the motto adopted by the West Midlands Police when it celebrated twenty-five years of existence in 1999. It was as relevant then as it is to this day. ‘Reporting For Duty’ seeks to provide the reader with a unique insight into the world of policing in the West Midlands, and the challenges faced by the Force daily from its inception on the 1st April 1974, to 1999. It covers a tumultuous period of social history, as the fabric of society was moulded, stretched and reformed against a backcloth of political and civil unrest, culminating in outbreaks of serious violence and acts of terrorism, whilst serious crime and serious criminals constantly tested the Force’s ability to respond effectively. This book highlights many personal acts of ‘courage and commitment’, but it also pays tribute to those officers who paid the ultimate price and lost their lives in the ‘line of duty’. Time marches on, but they will forever remain in the thoughts of their families and the Police Service to which they gave so much. They will not be forgotten by the ‘police family’. This is a book filled with factual police history blended with personal accounts from scores of individuals who provide a ‘human touch’ to the story of arguably the UK’s second biggest police force. It is also packed with two hundred images, most of which have never been seen by the public. ‘Reporting For Duty’ is a must-read for police historians, and social history academics, but mostly it is a compelling read for members of the public who simply want to know more about what makes the men and women who serve in the police continue to ‘report for duty’ whatever the challenges they will have to face. #wmp #police #history #truestories #onefamily #tradition #courage

‘The Hooligans Are Still Among Us’

Topical then – topical now and at the forefront of the news again today – looking at how hooliganism continues to plague British football, former police officers Michael Layton and Bill Rogerson explore the continued effect of violence on the modern game. The Hooligans Are Still Among Us examines the damage wrought by hooligans travelling to and from domestic matches as well as within the stadium itself, the English disease abroad and the continuing factor of racist and sectarian motivations in fuelling the madness. Layton and Rogerson also paint a portrait of some of British football’s most notorious firms, as well as looking at some of the potential solutions being put forward by the British police. Fully up to date, including first-hand accounts of the madness that engulfed Marseilles as Russian, English and French fans clashed at Euro 2016, The Hooligans Are Still Among Us is an essential read for anyone interested in the pervasive influence hooliganism continues to have on the beautiful game. #football #hooliganism #uk #police #history #thebeautifulgame @amberleypublishers

Top Secret Worcestershire

Deep in the beautiful Worcestershire countryside lie a number of secret places that played a special part in protecting a generation from the onslaught of a world war. Traveller’s passing through leafy Worcestershire lanes may catch a glimpse of a structure that seems out of place against the backdrop of fields and hills – the dish of a gigantic radio telescope. How did such an incongruous structure arrive in the middle of nowhere, and what does it do? This book answers the question, and recounts the dramatic history of two ‘Top Secret’ wartime airfields, and how their activities were inextricably linked to the ‘boffins’ of the Malvern Telecommunications Research Establishment. It tells the story of brilliant inventions, wartime courage and sacrifice, tragic air crashes, and ordinary and extraordinary people, pushing themselves and their machines to the limit and beyond. Crafted using personal recollections – the book reveals the truly extraordinary wartime commitment and camaraderie that fuelled extraordinary endeavour and achievement. #RAF #Defford #Pershore #Radar #WWII #truestories #Malvern

‘The Night The Owl Cried – A Taste of Cyprus’

Cyprus is the third largest island in the Mediterranean and possesses a rich blend of European and Eastern influence, as it stands facing east and west, with its history shaped by the Roman, Greek and Turkish Empires.
Androulla Christou-Layton was born on the island in 1965 – it is her home and where her heart truly lies.
In a place with a resident population of less than one million people, families are inextricably linked to each other, and whatever the distance between them those bonds remain strong.
This book tells the story of Andry’s life in Cyprus between 1965 and 1983, beginning with the creation of the Christou family, and then moving on to the generations that followed.
It reveals a very personal insight into the world of a child growing up in difficult circumstances during years which included the dramatic events of a coup and invasion in 1974, plus a host of tragedies which touched her life, in some form or another.
Above all else though it is a tale of hope and happiness as new births, christenings and weddings add to the family.
If you like history, culture, customs, and food mixed in with a real-life story, and the odd ‘fairy tale’, told in a simple fashion then this is a book for you.
It’s a must-read for people looking to holiday on the island who want to experience and feel what life is really like behind the sun and the beaches. It will also appeal to historians and those with an interest in other people’s way of life.
You will certainly know much more about the real Cyprus by the end of it.

In 2022 a second book – ‘The Patriot’ will be published which charts the life during turbulent times of Andry Christou’s father – Costas Christou (RIP). From ‘EOKA’ fighter to becoming a talented artist details for the book were translated from Greek to English from his many diaries never before published. #cyprus #truestories #culture #politics #familylife #places #food #history

‘The Little Book of Slang, Sayings, Jargon and Humour’ – signed copies available

The definition of slang according to the Oxford Dictionary is ‘a type of language consisting of words and phrases that are regarded as very informal are more common in speech than in writing and are typically restricted to a particular context or group of people’. Thus, the choice of a phrase, or the use of ‘jargon’, a saying, or abbreviation, can accurately reflect our links to a specific place, employment or situations that impact upon us in our everyday lives. In the UK alone it is estimated that there are at least fifty-six regional interpretations of how we use English to convey our feelings and to communicate with one another. This little book contains some 2,000 such phrases, sayings and abbreviations drawn together, in the main, from the experiences of one family. It manifestly displays what a diverse world we now live in as families transcend different cultures and countries. It is not an academic study, rather it is designed to promote memories, to enable reflection on previous life experiences and, above all else, to simply have some fun whilst reading it. Preserving our past whilst understanding the present helps us to create history for the future as new generations go on to create their own versions of ‘slang’ applicable to that period. ‘Ta-Ra-A-Bit’. #slang #sayings #jargon #humour #historical #comparativelinguistics #fun #xmas #memories