15:59 Monday 23 December 2013

Brenda tells of unhappy marriage in new memoir

Written byMARK MCKAY

AN East Staffordshire grandmother, famed for her crazy fund-raising adventures, has recounted her childhood memories in a soon-to-be-released memoir.

Brenda Backhouse, 83, of Victoria Street, Yoxall, has put pen to paper in a two-part book about growing up on a farm in Leigh during the 1930s and 40s.

Mrs Backhouse, who has previously raised money for charity by abseiling down high-rise building, skydiving and paragliding, also lifts the lid on a largely unhappy year marriage.

The books, called Gather Ye Rosebuds and Marriage: Is This It, will be released through Pegasus Publishers on January 23.

Mrs Backhouse said she started ‘scribbling notes’ about her colourful life about three years ago before she received the go-ahead from the publishers earlier this year.

She said: “Hopefully it will help me get rid of some of the memories because the marriage was not very good.

“I was never properly me when I was married because I couldn’t be.”

“Before that I was having a lovely time and everything was really good but I got married which was against my parents wishes.

“But at the time the more they said no the more I wanted to do it.”

Despite her unhappy marriage, Mrs Backhouse said she enjoyed her childhood working on her parent’s farm.

As a young adult she moved to Stafford to work in the county library before she attended college in Sheffield as an aspiring teacher.

Mrs Backhouse found work at an infants school near Hull despite leaving college while in the upper sixth and not attending university.

Then, after enduring 28 years of a troubled marriage, Mrs Backhouse decided enough was enough and left her husband after the youngest of her five children left for university in 1981.

She said: “It’s not a happy scenario but my childhood was great because I worked hard on the farm and I had lots of boyfriends which was nice.

“I have been scribbling bits down about my life for a few years and this year I decided to finish it off.”

Anyone who would like to purchase Mrs Backhouse’s memoirs should call 01223 370012.

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