In the 1920’s, depression wrapped the city of Glasgow like a cloak. Jobs were hard to find and the rent man was never far away but it was with an unassailable optimism that Glaswegians lived their lives and brought up their children. Alex Clark, born in 1920 in a tenement building in Partick, an area close to the shipyards, is a typical example of a boy born in the depression. Young Alex was clever and a good footballer and even attended Hutchisons Grammer School; for as long as the family could afford it.
The author’s account of his early years graphically describes the poverty and struggles which were part of daily life. He joined the Boys Brigade which became an integral part of his life and was awarded the Kings Medal for his achievements, the self-discipline he acquired helped form his character which was to be so important in later life. (In his book Almost A Hero the author describes his wartime activities and capture during the battle of Crete.) Even though times were tough there is never a hint of self-pity. People were used to little else and simple enjoyments were savoured in a way which we cannot appreciate today.
Lavishly illustrated by many unpublished pictures, Alex Clark’s narrative is a valuable contribution to the life of a unique city during a low time in its history.