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This time next week - a character study of Gaffer

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ENGLISH COURSEWORK THIS TIME NEXT WEEK A CHARACTER STUDY OF THE GAFFER In this book the Gaffer is one of the main characters involved. He is also known as Mr Gardener, the superintendent of Dickies, a Doctor Barnado's home. Leslie first met him when he was separated from his brother, Roy, because of the tragic death of his parents. His father drowned at sea and his mother died a short time later. Leslie was then transferred to the Doctor Barnado's home in Kingston Upon Thames. Doctor Barnado was a kind and considerate man that created a home for homeless children that needed looking after in the 1900's. After that a link of the homes were distributed across the country. Doctor Barnado had obviously died before the Gaffer had come along. The first time when Leslie met the gaffer was when he and this man that had brought him to the home walked into the hallway of Dickies and saw this boy. "The man told the little boy to go fetch Mr Gardener the superintendent." At that moment Leslie had no idea what the Gaffer was or looked like. ...read more.


"If the gaffer had one fault, and he had more than one, it was that he sometimes let his old-fashioned imperialism loose on us, like a broadside from a Victorian gunboat, and tried to influence our political thinking." This meant he tried but did not usually succeed to try and persuade the boys to think his way politically. "The Irish and the welsh were treacherous parasite races, hanging onto England because it suited their situation, but ready to swing the knife at any moment. French, Dutch, Spaniards, and every other people, with the exception of the Ghurkas whom he admired, he regarded as coming a lap or two behind even the Welsh in the human race." He thought the British Empire was the best, that it saved the world. "Look at the red on the map and you'll see how we English have saved the world with our Empire." He was intensely patriotic towards the British Empire. He admired Churchill and Eden because they both fought for the Empire. The Gaffer believed that he helped with the war effort as he stayed on as the superintendent at Dickies. ...read more.


Then the Gaffer, leaping up and waving his arms into the beam of light, and shouting Stop it! Cut it off! No more of this filth!" The Gaffer looked forward to his retirement away from ordering boys around and responsibility. "He had been eager for his retirement for years, but as it approached he grew silent and fidgety and no longer spoke of the hollyhocks he was going to nurture along his Cornish garden fence. The Gaffer gradually grew softer towards the end. Especially with the budgie incident when Spikey died. Sadly later on Matron died. "Matron suffered a stroke and when she was sufficiently well to be moved the Gaffer, as gentlemanly and loving to her as he had been his whole life through, took her away to the cottage by the sea in Cornwall. There she died, and in no great time he followed her." So the Gaffer eventually died after quite a long but eventful life. Overall he was a good man. Most of the time not understanding but all right to be around. Despite his biased views to other nationalities he got on well with people. In the end Leslie and the other boys probably appreciated the discipline dished out by the Gaffer. As they could have turned out different as to what they are today. October 2002 1 Matthew Walton 10SB ...read more.

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