I WAS fortunate enough to be able to attend the launch of Adrian Arnold’s debut book ‘The Chinese Year of the Prat’ at Scarborough Library on Saturday February 26.
The mayor, Cllr Hazel Lynskey and Lady Heather Ayckbourn also took the time and trouble to come along and everyone agreed the book was very inspirational.
Briefly, Adrian had left school illiterate and was a drunkard by the age of 16. He got himself into trouble to feed his alcohol addiction and ended up in prison 30 years ago from where he reached a turning point. Having taught himself to read and write he then went on to attend Hull University where he gained a 2.1 Honours Degree in Modern and Medieval History – a fantastic achievement. Some years later he helped an orphanage in Kenya become self sufficient.
Adrian has now been sober for 16 years and works with people with learning and physical difficulties. Previously he worked in a alcohol treatment centre.
Now you might wonder where all this is leading.
The Scarborough Evening News very kindly wrote an article about Adrian’s achievements – but completely spoiled it by the large headline ‘Happy ending for ex-jailbird author’ Why the Ex-Jailbird? Adrian was in prison thirty years ago, this sort of sensationalism was really not in the spirit of his accomplishments.
I am very disappointed that the Evening News headline chose to dwell on adversity rather than success. Fortunately, although several people remarked on this unfortunate headline, they still chose to turn out and support a man who is now making a difference to other people lives. Well done Adrian, and may you have success with your book.