The author Valentine Barnes invites you to accompany him on a ‘Return Journey’. It is a journey spanning over 70 years and a period of time in which he recalls, in both prose and poetry, the many and varied experiences he has undergone. Throughout the pages of this book we are transported to his inner world of elation, joy, humour, loss and extreme sadness.
Within Return Journey Valentine travels back to the grief and humour on the day of his grandmother’s funeral; he remembers the sadness of the family who lost their parents during WWII, and he reminisces under a big tree on the site that had once been his home. He also remembers helping with the Daily Mail Channel Swim, amusing school camp incidents, some stories behind photographs, and experiences in Cornwall.
At the beginning of each piece of writing Valentine has included a short descriptive explanation of the material so that the reader can fully comprehend each piece of prose or poetry and understand how it fits into Valentine’s particular journey through life. He has also included some of his own drawings and photographs of people, events and places that feature within this book.
About the author:
Alfred Valentine Barnes was born in 1928. Married to Joy in 1951, they have one surviving daughter. He served as a Royal Marine at the Deal, Kent Personnel Selection Office and later at the RM office in London at the end of WWII. After demobilisation he worked on a number of Fleet Street newspapers, latterly having a 12 year period as a reporter on the Daily Mirror.
In 1966 he left news gathering and qualified as an English teacher serving for one year on the staff of a London secondary school. This was followed by his appointment as Head of English at a Cornish secondary school for a period of six years until 1975. He then served the same educational establishment as Head of General and Social Studies and also occupied the role of Senior Tutor.
After retirement he researched and edited The Narrative of a Tour – in the Glorious Summer of 1842 written by James Barnes, his great-great-grandfather, and this was published in 2016.
His interests include writing prose and poetry, acrylic painting, reading, research, social history, carpentry and model railways.