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Ron Southerton

Ron Southerton is a retired Charted Engineer, living in Scarborough. A freelance translator and sometime publisher, Ron was a keen supporter of Valley Press in its early years, and we were pleased to publish his autobiography All Over the Place: A Life in November 2013.

BOOKS

All Over the Place: A Life

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All Over the Place: A Life is the autobiography of retired Charted Engineer Ron Southerton; a life both ordinary and remarkable; recognisable and unusual. With his teenage years overshadowed by the Second World War, Ron joined the army in the immediate aftermath of that conflict, and served in Palestine, Tripoli, Korea and Aden. Leaving the army as a Major, he became editor of a monthly academic journal, before being head-hunted by a Swedish company responsible for industrial gas turbines – with this career eventually leading him to a spell as area manager in Baghdad, before returning to the UK to work as a freelance translator in Scarborough, North Yorkshire.

As the book’s title suggests, the story of those years is told with plenty of self-deprecating humour – ‘my memory is so bad,’ Ron confesses, ‘I can no longer remember what it is I have forgotten’. Highlights include the day he confronted Robert Maxwell in his Oxford office for overdue translation work fees (and won), the day he rode on the footplate of Mallard at 99mph from Doncaster to King’s Cross, and the day he found himself on the east side of the Berlin Wall during the Cold War...

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