‘An Unusual Life’, London & Summerhill 1975

Summerhill School, they say, is the happiest place on earth. It is also the most famous democratic school in the world, founded by the Scottish educator A. S. Neill… Should a child have shown antisocial behaviour an extreme solution could be where a problem child would be made to sit in the middle of the floor in the meetings and other children were asked to remark on their good qualities. When using this approach the child might also be given some form of material gift, to show them that they were loved and trusted. Although most of us at first seemed sceptical about this approach, it worked more often than not.

‘An Unusual Life’. Return to England 1974 – London via Amsterdam.

After half an hour of driving around we arrived in the centre of Amsterdam and stopped by some traffic lights. A small hatchback pulled up beside us on Taffy’s side. Taffy asked me to hand him a brown bag, which I did, while looking over. I saw there were four guys in the car and I watched Taffy hand the bag to the driver. The bag must have weighed two to three kilos. In exchange they handed him an envelope and both parties drove away when the traffic lights turned green. Few words, if any, had been spoken.