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The GFS holds many varied and interesting items of archive material and occasionally displays some at the Blackpool conventions. One of the most interesting items which has never been seen by the members is George Formby's last pocket diary/address book. This item was donated to the GFS some years ago and came via the GFS website. George Formby certainly did not keep a diary and writes notes of his doings every day but the mere fact that there are names and addresses written in George's faltering hand makes the little book a very special item for any lover of Formby memorabilia. We have always known that George Formby had a limited education owing to the fact that he was sent away from home from the age of 7 to learn to be a jockey and to live a Spartan life in racing stables. But here in this diary we can see how George incorrectly spelled numerous simple names and perhaps can judge that not only was his spelling not the best, but his health was not good in this, the last full year of his life. Even though there are no dates, the fact that Pat Howson is referred to twice tells us that he was in contact with his future fiancé whilst Beryl was still alive. It is not really practical to put it on display in Blackpool as of course there is no permanent home for the archive material - so I thought that the next best thing to do was to use the web site to allow anybody who might be interested, to examine the contents of the 1960 diary. The money and postage stamp which was included with this little book and illustrated on this page also belonged to George and was inside the diary when the donor procured it at the auction which took place at Beryldene after George died. Also note the appointment with J. S. Hilton Collinge F.D.S. R.C.S. L.D.S. My immediate thought was that this might perhaps be a heart specialist but the letters could suggest a dentist. The address in Southport is now a nursing home. It is also worth noting the name ‘Charlie’ which is written on one of the five-pound notes. Did George intend this note for Charlie? There is a “Charlle” (George’s spelling) in the diary with an address and Charlie’s ‘mam’ is also referred to – with this time the correct spelling. Even though there is not that much detail in the diary, there is more than enough for anyone who has studied George and his world. He obviously tried to make his life a little easier by commuting by air between Bristol (were he was playing in pantomime) and Blackpool. Richard Afton is the man who produced the Friday Show and Harold Fielding was an impresario at that time who would fix George up with theatre dates. All in all, this little diary opens a small door and gives us a unique view in to the life of George Formby in late 1959 to early 1960.
The GFS holds many varied and interesting items of archive material and occasionally displays some at the Blackpool conventions. One of the most interesting items which has never been seen by the members is George Formby's last pocket diary/address book. This item was donated to the GFS some years ago and came via the GFS website. George Formby certainly did not keep a diary and writes notes of his doings every day but the mere fact that there are names and addresses written in George's faltering hand makes the little book a very special item for any lover of Formby memorabilia. We have always known that George Formby had a limited education owing to the fact that he was sent away from home from the age of 7 to learn to be a jockey and to live a Spartan life in racing stables. But here in this diary we can see how George incorrectly spelled numerous simple names and perhaps can judge that not only was his spelling not the best, but his health was not good in this, the last full year of his life. Even though there are no dates, the fact that Pat Howson is referred to twice tells us that he was in contact with his future fiancé whilst Beryl was still alive. It is not really practical to put it on display in Blackpool as of course there is no permanent home for the archive material - so I thought that the next best thing to do was to use the web site to allow anybody who might be interested, to examine the contents of the 1960 diary. The money and postage stamp which was included with this little book and illustrated on this page also belonged to George and was inside the diary when the donor procured it at the auction which took place at Beryldene after George died. Also note the appointment with J. S. Hilton Collinge F.D.S. R.C.S. L.D.S. My immediate thought was that this might perhaps be a heart specialist but the letters could suggest a dentist. The address in Southport is now a nursing home. It is also worth noting the name ‘Charlie’ which is written on one of the five-pound notes. Did George intend this note for Charlie? There is a “Charlle” (George’s spelling) in the diary with an address and Charlie’s ‘mam’ is also referred to – with this time the correct spelling. Even though there is not that much detail in the diary, there is more than enough for anyone who has studied George and his world. He obviously tried to make his life a little easier by commuting by air between Bristol (were he was playing in pantomime) and Blackpool. Richard Afton is the man who produced the Friday Show and Harold Fielding was an impresario at that time who would fix George up with theatre dates. All in all, this little diary opens a small door and gives us a unique view in to the life of George Formby in late 1959 to early 1960.
george’s address book