- The Life & Times of a Great Briton
- Keith Langston
Fred Dibnah MBE was born in Bolton, Lancashire and became well known for either climbing and repairing tall chimneys, or knocking them down. It was his occupation, as a steeplejack, that brought him into the public eye via a local television programme.
This book is full of great photographs, including ones from the ‘The Moustache Years’, and has contributions from friends of his, or people that he has worked with, who all have a tale to tell. I didn’t realise that he had 3 wives, not all at the same time of course, but it doesn’t come as a great surprise when you consider that is first love was steam engines. Also I didn’t realise that concrete could be so unpredictable when used to build chimneys.
Fred became a television presenter in his later years. Always wearing a flat cap, overalls and ready to have a go at whatever mechanical or building process he was explaining. He once did a ‘deemonstration’ of how a brick arch was built. The arch was made and after the cement had set the wooden support was removed. It held together fine but he had to show that the arch could support weight. Not a good move, I think he blamed the cement after the arch rapidly became a pile of bricks again.
A good book that is perhaps hard to find considering that it was published exclusively by WHSmith.