I am a full-time family man and a part-time musician and photographer. As a 21 year old Geordie lad in 1976, I left Whitley Bay Grammar School, went to Liverpool to study for my Batchelor of Science honours degree in Applied Biology, moved down south, got married, raised a family, worked far too hard for many years, got married again, then retired.
After graduating, I moved from my beloved North East, to work as a biologist for the Agricultural Development and Advisory Service (ADAS) for a while. Then I re-educated myself and went into computing (Natural Environment Research Council and UK Atomic Energy Authority). Finally, I set up my own IT business creating websites. I retired in 2021 and that happened the moment I switched off my business email address on 7th April 2021. After a lifetime of working, that was a tangible moment of release and relief.
Retirement has given me more time to spend with my family, my music and my photography. Being a family man, my roles as husband, Dad and Grandad are the best things in my life. I’d give up my hobbies if I had to, but never my family. In the words of me lovely Mam “life is good”.
I am an active Christian and enjoy being part of Wantage Community Church. I have been involved in room setup and sound engineering for Sunday services, and run several Alpha Courses, Marriage and Marriage Preparation Courses. I started and ran our church’s very first website, served as a Street Pastor in Wantage and even preached a few times. These days I stick to playing in the Worship Band, which I really love doing.
My greatest achievement is bringing up my four children, Jamie, Victoria, Gordon and Robert. For years they were the reason I got up in the morning, went to work, and battled on each day to keep us together amidst my first wife’s (dear Lesley) chronic illness. Sadly, Lesley didn’t make it, but somehow we not only survived, but have thrived. My children are still my everything, my heartbeat, and I’m so proud of each one of them.
Howard Hill December 2021