I was born in Hartlepool and have lived in the Northeast all of my life – Sunderland, Durham and for the past thirteen years, Newcastle. I am married and have two married daughters and four grandchildren. I am a retired teacher and fifty-eight years after starting to teach I still go into a local high school to do exam invigilation. After retirement, five years ago I started to volunteer at Silverline. I am currently involved as an escort on the minibus pick-up for the Monday afternoon cafe, as a befriender and as a help in the shop for a few hours a week.