By Karen Dunn – with Crawley Observer and Crawley Times
To sum up Looking Back at Crawley in one sentence is simple – it is a book about Crawley written by its people.
Two years in the making, Looking Back at Crawley includes pictures and memories from the early 20th century onwards.
While some of the photos were taken from the Crawley Observer archive, the majority were loaned to the paper from private albums by people who have watched Crawley grow from a village into a sprawling New Town.
There are tale of wartime courage, school days and the excitement of a Royal visit, carnivals, sports and the people and places that make the town unique.
You can read first-hand accounts of doodlebug strikes during World War Two, school life in the 1920s, the biker of the 1960s who were nowhere near as fearsome as they looked and the Land Girl who refused to give up her job even when the war ended.
There is a 96-year-old whose mother took him to school when he was five and then never set foot in the building again; the couple who met hours after a German bomb killed dozens of people and the teacher who stood with a gaggle of excited schoolchildren waiting for the arrival of the People’s Princess.
With the face of Crawley changing day by day, many of the people and places mentioned in the book are long gone – making Looking Back at Crawley a must see for anyone eager to look back and say ‘I remember when … ‘
224 pages. Over 350 illustrations