Percy Vere (H.V.Smith) (b.1913): Biographical Entry

783 VERE, Percy [pseud. of H.V. SMITH], ‘The Autobiography of a Working Man’, TS, pp.10 (c.6,500 words). Brunel University Library.


Born March 1913 in London. Son of a flour miller. Received formal education from age 5 to 14. Married, 1936, with 1 son. Moved to Lingfield, Surrey, in 1967. Living in Godstone, Surrey, in 1984.


Started work in the building trade at age 14; dust-cart driver (1936); night-worker at Croydon Salvage Destructor (1939), sorting metal from refuse; conscripted, employed as a driver with the RASC; bricklayer following demob; a spinal injury caused him to take less strenuous work as a maintenance carpenter at a factory; press operator at a motor-body factory, becoming a lay-out inspector; proprietor of a general provision store (1967); maintenance worker at a brickyard.


Member of Oxted Stroke Club and Work Centre; founder-member of Croydon and District Bonsai Group.

General reflections on a poor childhood, Derby Day, transport (motor bicycles and cars), courtship, work life, army experiences, old age and illnesses.


Vere, Percy, The Autobiography of a Working Man , Burnett Archive of Working Class Autobiographies, University of Brunel Library, Special Collection, 2:783

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