Gateway to the South revisited – 3


One of the flats in which we lived in Du Cane Court had its windows backing out onto a courtyard.  Any sound would echo around.  By the law of averages one of the inhabitants within the 627 flats (we counted them all one wet Bank Holiday Monday) would be a mad person.  Mr Philips was that man in our block.  I remember one hot, summer evening, when the windows were open but a quiet air of peace hung over SW17, when an utterance, through the silence and reverberating around the courtyard came from said Mr Philips: “turn that fucking radio down!” he shouted like the opening of Billy Cotton’s Showband programme and then suddenly back to a silence like a grave.  We think that Mr Philips may have previously been a Radio Caroline DJ and was never reconciled to the fact he was no longer afloat.  He certainly wasn’t mentally.


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