My Part of the River

I have just finished reading My Part of the River (1974) by Grace Foakes which deals with much of her childhood and early adulthood in Wapping (East London). Grace Foakes was born the year Queen Victoria died (1901) and would thus have been ten years younger than my grandmother (Alice Luck) – so much of what Grace writes has family resonances. One quotation which sticks out is: “They were happy days in that close-knit community. The feeling of belonging outclassed everything else. There was poverty, disease, dirt and ignorance, and yet to feel one belonged outweighed all else.”

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