The title for the book ‘Hey Teacher, you’re ‘aving a Larf’ is taken from a period in my career teaching on the North East of Birmingham. It stems straight from comments made by one of my Year Heads. Regularly, towards the end of my career, teaching in that large comprehensive school in the middle of a very large overspill estate, much of my day would be spent trying to sort out problems of pupils, staff and parents. This at times was very wearing and tedious and to find lighter moments in the school day made the job, and life, much easier. Hence, when times got tough, this Head of Year would keep telling me ‘You’re ‘aving a Larf’. This he always said after a time when perhaps my voice became raised at some pupil over a misdemeanour. Steve’s own humour was dark, but very funny, and these words were a comfort on ‘heavy’ days.
There were hundreds of hilarious incidents which brought a smile to my face, and kept me and other staff on the right side of sanity, and to this day make me laugh when I choose to remember them. I have tried to record some of those for the reader to gauge for themselves and to show that, despite the onerous responsibilities within teaching, it was possible to have fun too.
Quentin Letts of the Daily Mail wrote: ' It is written with fluency and great optimism. That is the lasting impression one has - the determination to draw positive memories and to reflect the companionable things in life. I also found it a refreshingly English, unselfish book, different to so much of the self-pitying fare one encounters nowadays............................... Best wishes, well done and thank you for letting me read your admirable memoirs.' 21/06/2008