The Tale of the Third City
What a Fucked up world
If the kids of today were to take a long hard look back at the 1970’s, they could be easily forgiven for thinking that the world had gone just a little bit mad. Me, I was a nine year old boy at the time, which I am sure you will all agree is a very impressionable age. What you saw, is what you modelled yourself on. One day I could be an American G.I plastic gun in hand, the next I would be dressed in those famous Claret and Blue colours, impersonating my West Ham hero Geoff Hurst. Then; on the days it rained, which it does quite often in here Northern Ireland. I would be Charlie Watts of the Rolling Stones banging on my little toy drum kit, while singing at the top of my voice “HERE COMES MY 96th NERVOUS BREAKDOWN”.
Did the 1970s affect me? Of course they did. Was I aware of that fact, or better still, did I care? Well to be honest, the answer to those question is probably not. It’s only now; as we look back on ourselves that we realize what a fucked up world we have all come from, and believe me. There is nowhere more so “for me anyway” than here in Northern Ireland where I grew up. Let me explain……
The memories I have of the 1970s are as clear today as they were all those years ago, as though it was yesterday and that's simply because the majority of my memories have been gathered from the countless images captured by those cameras belonging to the world’s press. Who then proceeded to project those images onto the family’s TV screen, and believe it or not but they are still using those same images today, possibly as constant reminder to all future generations of what could happen, when things do go horribly wrong!!!
Such images as those of mighty America flexing its muscles as it waged war on little old Vietnam, which turned out to be the biggest embarrassment the U.S. has yet to get over, never mind the fact they have yet to learn from the mistakes that were made.
Such a great nation left to cradle the memories of a lost generation. Families left with only the memories of their loved ones; while those in power simply turned there back‘s on the saviours. Is it just me, or does everyone else see this as a total disregard to the sacrifice they made? It was that kind of attitude which caused untold problems across America. The civil unrest, the anti-war protesters, and the mirrored images of the nineteen sixties “black” civil right marches.
May Day 1971 was one of those days that saw the similarities between our two great nations coincide with one another. In the States, it was a day which saw thousands of peace protesters gathering in the American capital to voice their views, hoping their opinions would be heard, but just like any other peaceful protest, before, then and forever after, violence broke out. Violence with a difference; violence which saw black and white Americans of all ages locked in running battles with both the police and the National Guard. Then on the same day; probably at the same time given the time difference, in North London, England....... It’s claimed that during a music festival in Finsbury Park, fighting erupted between black and white Skin Heads at a live performance of the legendary Desmond Decker.
The scenes which supposedly unfolded there that day are said to have led to the “Anglo-Caribbean love affair” coming to an abrupt and brutal end. You know such a love affair I never knew existed but those who were there seem to remember, and they claim. It was just another sad day for the British Empire, for in the wake of this violence ‘this once Great and Proud Nation' was to bear witness to the newly formed right wing movement known as the “National Front” boosting their Neo Nazi ideology, to both grow in strength and in numbers. Sadly bring with them a new culture of racial hatred onto the streets of Britain, which spread through the working class youth of England like the plague. At first, it was contained within the local housing estates, but it soon found its way onto the terraces of every major football stadium in the country. It was their anti-Black mentality which helped to escalate the ever growing problem of the time, which we all now know, as the “British football hooligan”.
These extracts have been taken from first dratf chapters, even though they are displayed on this site they may not necessarily appear in the book, but I can assure you without any doubt whatsoever, they most certainly are part and parcel of the "Trilogy Story"! So if you buy the Book, you like it and want to read the Chapters that are not included, they will be available from this site! Remember its 40 years of memories and 5 years of research!
I would also like point out, that we are in search of photos of the era, so if you can help please send copies of whatever you have to, firstname.lastname@example.org don't forget to leave your details so we can credit you. Thanks