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Franglaise MummyHi, I'm Sophie, a francophile Brit, living in London after 12 years on the French Riviera, wife to a Frenchman, mum to two half-English/half-French daughters. A former language teacher, marketing/PR professional and bilingual PA, I now split my time between running my Franglaise childcare business and writing this blog. I write about my life which covers all sorts of parenting and lifestyle shizzle, usually with a Franglaise take.
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PostHeaderIcon 100 years ago today…

100 years ago today my paternal grandfather was born. He lived through 2 world wars, had 3 children (one of whom became a bit famous, working on Doctor Who, amongst other things), 8 grandchildren and knew one of his (now 5, soon to be 6) great-grandchildren before he died in 2005 just short of 91. Today’s blog-post is a tribute to Grandad, also known as Magic Grandad.

Grandad was not your usual grandad, here are some pretty cool things about him:

  • He was an actual magician, and a member of the magic circle, so used to entertain us with magic tricks whenever we saw him. Can you imagine how AMAZING that was for us kids?
  • He was a ventriloquist and had a dummy called George. He performed with George during the second world war, when he was stationed with the RAF. He appeared with Sir Harry Lauder when he was based in Scotland during the early war years, and then with Sir Noel Coward when he was stationed in Southern Rhodesia.
Grandad with George and one of brothers and one of my sisters in the 80s

Grandad with George and one of brothers and one of my sisters in the 80s

  •  When he was a student he had a holiday job where he would paint the elephants’ toenails at Chessington Zoo (as it was then), before the elephants performed in the Chessington Circus. I love telling this story to L every time we go to Chessington :-)
  • During WWII he was a padre in the RAF, and was based in Rhodesia. He would be taken up on maiden flights to make sure they got through ok, as he was a man of the cloth and it was thought that his presence would protect them. His presence apparently did something as he made it through the war unscathed.
  • Then there was his day job – Grandad was also a local vicar, and he used to give some pretty cool and interesting sermons.

Grandad, you might not be with us anymore but you live on in the retelling of these stories, and in your terrible jokes which carry on with our dad. In your memory:

My brother's christening in 1978 with Grandad, who christened him, in the top right. (I'm the suck-a-thumb in my dad's arms, age 2 and 1/2.)

My brother’s christening in 1978 with Grandad, who christened him, in the top right. (I’m the suck-a-thumb in my dad’s arms, top left, age 2 and 1/2.)

In Granny and Grandad's garden in the late 1970s with 3 of my 4 siblings (I'm in Granny's arms).

In Granny and Grandad’s garden in the late 1970s with 3 of my 4 siblings (I’m in Granny’s arms).

Grandad with my mum and dad (his son) in 2000, age 86.

Grandad with my mum and dad (his son) in 2000, age 86.

I’m linking this post up to #PoCoLo:

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