Gloucester Crescent: Me, My Dad and Other Grown-Ups
Being part of Westend community, I was attracted by the book titled ‘Gloucester Crescent: Me, My Dad and Other Grown-Ups’ from local library and wanted to find out what it was like living in the 60s, 70s and 80s in Gloucester Crescent in Camden Town.
The author’s father, Jonathan Miller, came from a medical doctor background, but was an English theatre and opera director, actor, author, and television presenter. Naturally, William was surrounding with TV screen writer, such as Alan Bennett and other famous actors in his neighbourhood. William talked the darker side of his father. Even being famous in others’ eye, he was often despairing with his own failure.
This resonates my childhood too. My father was a poet since he was a teenager. However in order to support our family, he started his early career a TV producer and later on he set up his own TV commercial film company. Before we could afford a family home, I used to spend my early childhood in the office and I was surrounded by many TV actors and models. Sometime I felt a bit overwhelm when hearing small talks about the entertainment industry through his circle of entertainment friends. When I was 12 years old, Dad asked if I want to take over his company one day. I said no way! Then he told me I shall study hard if I want to do something different for my life.
The second half of the book focuses on William’s school live. In the primary school years, William met his mother’s expectation and passed the exam as a music scholar to get into Primrose Hill Primary . His parents believed the school will guide the lightening path for his future. In the contract, William and his Gloucester Crescent friend Conrad were labelled as posh and William, in particular, was often bullied through out the rest of school years in Primrose.
He got into into Bedales in A-levels in the hope of becoming a doctor like his father. However he struggled through the two years study in Bedales and he failed miserable with all Os at the end.
Instead of taking extra year to study, William decided to move to New York and started his career in TV production and later on became succeed and returned to Gloucester Crescent with his wife and two daughters.