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Meetings with Ivor book review

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: August 12, 2014

By Lucy Evans

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'I LIVE on the shores on Rudyard lake' – are words recently written by Tricia Durdey as part of her book about the heart-warming memoirs of Horton man John Ivor Sutton.

'Meetings with Ivor' is a book that typifies a bygone era, a heart-warming story about a 'real character' that you just can't help but come to admire.

His easy going nature and willingness to say exactly what he's thinking is both endearing and humorous.

Tricia has combined Ivor's stories with hers and other people's memories of him in a way which enables the reader to truly feel as though they grasp his personality and life.

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It includes small stories which reflect his very local background such as: "I was in Leek today. Bought a meat and potato pie, then went on to sit in a cafe with a cup of tea.

"They told me I couldn't eat my pie in there. What kind of cafe is that, where you can't eat a meat and potato pie. Funny kind of place. Rum."

It's also very clear through this memoir that Ivor was known and loved by many.

This is shown by the many letters in this book from people who wrote to Tricia telling her of their personal meetings with Ivor or his family and how he touched their life.

One letter printed in Tricia's book said: "He was well liked, was Ivor. He'd go to people. They'd take pity on him and give him plenty of food."

The creation of 'Meetings with Ivor' follows Tricia's appeal, through the Letters to the Editor pages in the Leek Post & Times, for other people's memories of Ivor, who died last November. Tricia said: "Following my letter earlier in the year regarding Ivor Sutton, I received a lot of response.

"With those responses I have now completed my book about this well known character from Horton."

Tricia explained how she first met Ivor: "On a September afternoon in 2011, as I was driving from Crewe to Derbyshire, I picked up an old man who was hitching from his home near Biddulph Moor.

"I dropped him off in Leek to do his shopping at the Co-op. The old man was called John Ivor Sutton – or Ivor.

"We became friends, and I visited him a number of times before he died last November.

"Ivor was such an amazing character."

'Meetings with Ivor' is forged in a way that allows any reader to get an authentic feel for both Ivor and the Staffordshire Moorlands that was his home.

A truly touching book and when it comes to Ivor it's fair to say "They don't make them like that any more."

This book is available online for free download at www.movingthemind.co.uk/writing, and there are also copies at bookshops in Leek.

Book Review by Lucy Evans

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