My Aunt Doris, my mother's sister, lived just outside Barnsley in a place called Wilthorpe; it was a council housing estate, but it was one of the better ones, and she was rather pleased with that.

Aunt Doris was slightly disapproving of my mother. My parents weren't married, which I was not supposed to know, but of course all the kids tell you straight away: 'Thy mam and dad's not married'. But he was a strangely moral man, my father, and when they finally did get married, he proudly told us: 'Me and your mother made it right today'.

I said, 'About bloody time,' and he said, 'There's no need to swear,' and gave me a clip - and I was nearly 20.

When I was very young, we always had family parties at my Aunt Doris's; we played all kinds of great games. It was always a very convivial house, which ours wasn't particularly, because I was brought up in a shop. The shop was in the living-room, and I did my homework on top of boxes of soap, and all that.

Without doubt, she was my favourite aunt, she was always fun, and she devoted time to me.

Uncle Fred worked in the steelworks out at Stockbridge. He was a thin, wiry man; he had a tattoo that said 'True Love' and, underneath that, 'Eve' - and him married to my Aunt Doris] 'Eve' got thrown at him every time they had a row, but he was a nice man was my Uncle Fred.

Their son, Jack, was an idol to me; he played for Barnsley Boys at football, and he had a girlfriend who was the most beautiful thing I'd ever seen.

I can remember the first time I saw him in his uniform: 1940. He had his chip-bag hat on, with a little white flash, which meant he was training for air crew, as an observer. I would have preferred him to have the two wings, which signified pilot, but to be in the RAF, to be a Brylcreem boy as they were called, was rather special and we were all proud of that.

He came back on leave once or twice, he'd be there with the beautiful Irene, because they became engaged, and we'd have tea and then play the silliest of games, like my Uncle Fred putting on soot moustaches.

Jack wouldn't talk about the war, but he'd been on countless operations over Germany. He was training lads how to fly the Wellington bomber. And when a wing fell off the plane, training over Yorkshire, our Jack was killed, and all the crew as well.

I remember being taken to Aunt Doris's shortly after his death, and I've never seen a woman with a face like that . . . these terrible tears.

She seemed inconsolable, but after a while I asked, 'When are we going to play games?'. She looked at me, and that look is seared into my mind even now, and said, 'There'll never be any more games in this house'.

I can remember the coffin being brought home, they advised my Aunt Doris not to look. My father looked and he said it was him. All my young life I asked, 'How did you know it was him?' and Dad would say, 'I just knew'. And when I was older, he said to me once, 'It could have been anyone'.

He was buried in Barnsley, our Jack, I can remember the funeral. And every day of her life, and she only died about three or four years ago, Aunt Doris went to that cemetery, and they even gave her keys so she could go in on her own. She never went away on holiday, so she could go to the cemetery. It ruined her life.

His death took everything fun out of that house, and her daughter was never really cared for after that. The house became a shrine to Jack, and on the walls were photographs of the crew who also died in the plane.

After I'd grown up and left Barnsley, Aunt Doris moved to an old folks' bungalow. Every so often I'd visit her, and there were still pictures of Jack on the wall, Jack and Irene, and Jack with his air crew.

Irene married after Jack died, and I was disappointed at that; I felt she'd let Jack down, although she still came to see my Aunt Doris, and was very friendly with her.

In Battersea Park there's a war memorial, First World War. It's a very interesting one, only little, three soldiers. You go around the back and they're holding hands - it's just fascinating. And on Remembrance Day, if I'm around the area, I go there - and I think about our Jack and Aunt Doris, because it was a terrible thing.

Brian Glover is touring the country with an updated version of 'The Canterbury Tales'.

(Photograph omitted)

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