Poetry reading by Keith Mowatt in Pages & Blendz as part of the Fore Street For All event in December 2021.

The Poet 

Words by Keith Mowatt

I was born in the old North Mid in 1936 and have lived in Edmonton all my life.  I was educated at Raynham Rd School Juniors, and then on to the higher grade school in Wilbury Way.

I spent my working life in the furniture industry and still make the odd piece for the family.  I’ve lived in the same house for over 84 years.  I bought it together with my wife while serving in the R.A.F.  We brought up our daughter and son, who now have their own families, and now as a widower and great grandfather, I still live there with my memories, which form the basis of my rhymes.

The Scout movement played an important part in my life as a youngster, gang shows, camping etc. When I was 13, Ralph Reader chose me to play the lead in the ‘Boy Scout’ pageant at the Royal Albert Hall, with nightly shows for a week in 1949.  I remember broadcasting on the BBC “In Town Tonight” programme, and the “Voice of Scouting” on Radio Luxembourg.

Those of our old troop who are still alive are still in contact with each other and meet for reunions.  I was asked to write an article for our reunion dinner and it started to sound like a rhyme, so I thought why not? So that was the start of it all.  I’ve been writing rhymes as a hobby ever since.

Apart from the fairy stories which I wrote for the great grandchildren, all my rhymes are based on events, happenings, and incidents, in my lifetime.  I have a folder with over 60 rhymes.  Some will jog your memory of former years, some you may find daft, however they are all a bit of local history.