Skip to content

A Hoxton Childhood & The Years After

March 23, 2017
by the gentle author

Click here to pre-order a copy for £20


It gives me great pleasure to announce that I shall be publishing A HOXTON CHILDHOOD & THE YEARS AFTER by A.S. Jasper (1905-1970) this spring and I am delighted to be collaborating with Labour & Wait to celebrate publication day on Tuesday 25th April.

A.S. Jasper’s tender memoir of growing up in the East End before the First World War was immediately acclaimed as a classic when it was described by the Observer in 1969 as ‘Zola without the trimmings.’ In this definitive new hardback edition, it is accompanied by the first publication of the sequel detailing the author’s struggles and eventual triumph in the Shoreditch cabinet-making trade, THE YEARS AFTER. Additionally, I have undertaken an extended interview with Terry Jasper, the author’s son, which is included as an Afterword, discussing his father’s life and writing.

The book is designed by David Pearson, and we have reproduced James Boswell‘s drawings for A HOXTON CHILDHOOD from the original artwork and commissioned new illustrations for THE YEARS AFTER from Joe McLaren.

I have always been fascinated by A. S. Jasper’s account of the life of old Hoxton, of which so little remains today, and the sequel traces the author’s path beyond the East End to a new home in the suburbs – a journey which so many undertook.

The party for publication day of  A HOXTON CHILDHOOD & THE YEARS AFTER will be held on Tuesday 25th April 7pm at the Labour and Wait Workroom, 29-32 The Oval, Off Hackney Rd, E2 9DT in the shadow of the magnificent gasometers. There will be refreshments, live music and readings. Click here to book a ticket (Please note booking opens at 10am on 23rd March)



A.S. Jasper, 1930



Illustration by Joe McLaren for THE YEARS AFTER



The Gentle Author is delighted to collaborate with Labour and Wait to present a SPITALFIELDS LIFE BOOKSHOP for ten days at the WORKROOM, 29-32 The Oval, Off Hackney Rd, Bethnal Green, E2 9DT, in the shadow of the magnificent gasometers. This will be a rare chance to take a look at all Spitalfields Life Books titles in one place and have a peek behind the scenes at Labour and Wait too.

(Wednesday 26th April – Saturday, May 6th, 11am-6pm. Closed Sunday 30th April)


3 Responses leave one →
  1. Greg Tingey permalink
    March 23, 2017

    The Joe McLaren woodcut of the van is fascinating:
    “Larkswood 4060” – later split into LAR & COP ( COPpermill) in 1953/4
    And the address in Billet Rd,- part of the local diaspora of cabinet-&-furniture makers in Walthamstow & around Tottenham Hale – having moved for the area near Cambridge Heath/London Fields, presumably.
    The van looks like a post-WWII version of a Morris 10
    ( I drove one, once, a very long time ago – it wasn’t mine, btw )
    Oh yes, current view of 234 Billet Road:

  2. Annette Keith permalink
    March 23, 2017

    Thank you for the wonderful livelihoods written about on this web site, as if I extended my travel in time and space by the capacity of the writers history and love of humanity/culture. atk

  3. March 23, 2017

    Hi GA, This looks like a most excellent venture- d’you think I could come down and draw the proceedings? Bex

Leave a Reply

Note: Comments may be edited. Your email address will never be published.

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS