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University of Bath Hatfield & Welwyn Garden City Ware Germany California

University of Bath (1975 - 1976)

My first stop after leaving Wymondham College was at the University of Bath. This was only a brief stop. I came here to study for a degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering but did not get past the first year.


Hatfield & Welwyn Garden City (1976 - 1982)

My second attempt at completing a degree course was at Hatfield Polytechnic, now called the University of Hertfordshire. Still studying Electrical and Electronic Engineering and this time it was successful and I graduated in 1980 with an Honours Degree.

This was a good time for myself as not only did I complete my first degree studies but also I met Stephanie whom I married in 1980 upon completion of this course. We were both lodging at the YMCA in Welwyn Garden City, just a short bus ride away from Hatfield Poly, until my final year. The YMCA was used mostly as temporary accommodation for young people starting work in the area, this included Stephanie, or on temporary work assignments as part of university studies and a small group from Hatfield Polytechnic. It was almost like a hall of residence but with much more varied and changing residents.

We still continued living in the same area after I finished my degree but now in rented accommodation while commuting daily to Harlow were I started full time work as a Design Engineer.


Ware (1982 - 1992)

Living in rented accommodation is fine but we wanted better so as soon as we were able we bought our first home in Ware which meant a shorter drive for myself to work each day. Many people may joke about its name but really Ware is a lovely small town. It has a lot of history and the town centre has a lot of character with many comfortable pubs spread along the High Street.

Our first home was a simple two bedroom flat on one of the new housing developments in town. Later we moved to a house in a quiet cul-de-sac just a short distance away but still only a short walk from the town centre and its many shops and pubs.

This was perhaps the start of family life as in 1987 our first son, David was born. He was followed in 1990 by our first daughter, Sarah. All this time I was still working as a Design Engineer in the same company in Harlow. I was fortunate though that during this time I was sponsored to attend University College London to complete a part-time Masters Degree in Microwave and Optical Engineering which I completed in 1987.


Germany (1992 - 1997)

After 12 years as a Design Engineer it was time for a career change. Not a total change but a move into the Electronic Design Automation software business and with it a move from the UK to Germany. Work was now based just outside Munich and we found a place to live in the village of Erling, a small mostly farming community in the Bavarian countryside.

Kloster Andechs

Erling is only a small village but it is dominated but a Benedictine Monastery that is located on the "Holy Mountain" at the northern end of town. Kloster Andechs is a major tourist attraction in the area and often the cause of some very heavy traffic travelling through it's narrow streets. Many of these visitors come because of the religious significance of this place but most come because of the beer. The bars and beergarden are always packed with many revelers from the Munich area and beyond who come to sample the much-prized brew. Some would say that this was a religious experience itself.

Our second daughter, Helen, was born in 1993 shortly after getting settled in Germany.


California (1997 onward)

The second major move was away from the European continent completely. Still doing a similar job and working for the same company but now at one of its locations in Southern California.

The Conejo Valley

We now live in Thousand Oaks, which is situated in the Conejo Valley to the north of Los Angeles and surrounded by the Santa Monica Mountains. This area was originally rough prairie environment that may be familiar to viewers of Hollywood Westerns. This area was used for the filming of such classics as TV shows like "Wagon Train" and "M*A*S*H" and recently "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman" was filmed just down the road. A far cry from the flat farming lands of Norfolk.

Life in California

Who would have known that I would be here, twenty five years after leaving Wymondham College, living in the shade of a tall palm tree and spending the hot, sunny afternoons with my children in our own swimming pool in the garden.


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Wymondham College Remembered