|The opening lines of One Winter.|
“Would you like to sign this petition? It's to stop them shutting the station.”
If he had said that once, he must have said it over 100 times on that first night.
“I think it's disgraceful. They've only just had it painted.”
“I bet Lord Beeching doesn't have to go on the train. I bet he gets driven round in a big posh car.”
“Them M.P.s in London don't care one bit about folk like us.”
These comments were typical of what the people of Ashurst thought about the whole business. Almost without fail they would look briefly at the words on his petition and sign. Sometimes it would be taken indooors for more of the family to add their names.
One man asked if his children could sign it or did they have to be 21. Another asked if he could put his mother's name down even though she had been dead for over a month.
“She would have signed it if she had still been with us” he said quietly.
Set in the fictional town of Ashurst in south Lancashire in the early sixties, against
the background of one of the worst winters in living memory, One Winter is a vivid and
humourous account of working class life at home, work and play, and written against a
background of romance, rock 'n' roll and rugby league.
“I found it warm and authentic and an enjoyable read.” - Stan Barstow
"Incredibly readable" - Wakefield Express
“Geoff Lee tells it as it really was – characters with a hard, tough approach to life but with a warmth, a companionship, a sense of humour and an outlook which made it a pleasure to live and play rugby league in a Northern town in that era.” - Ray French
“A novel that rings true with an authentic voice of the northern working class in the 1960s” - Tony Collins
"An evening spent within its pages is like an evening spent in a snug somewhere, with a pint at your side and some friendly old bloke with a tale to tell. A tale you want to hear." - Tony Hannan, Total League
It is unpretentious, well written and eminently readable - Frank Galligan, British Society of Sports History