WHERE I GREW UP: Stephen Hendry

Stephen Hendry, the snooker player, grew up on a 1970s estate near Edinburgh gd
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The Independent Online
I grew up Dalgety Bay, in the kingdom of Fife, in a 1970s bungalow. We moved there when I was nine and stayed for about six years.

I suppose you could describe the neighbourhood as suburbia. Many of the people around us worked in Edinburgh and Dunfermline. Dalgety Bay is picturesque, on the banks of the River Forth. Our estate was a new one. It had football pitches and my friends lived near by. I liked it.

The bungalow had four bedrooms, a living-room, kitchen and bathroom, which seemed more than adequate to me, and a garden front and back. It was a move up for us - our previous house was smaller. Four of us lived there: my mum, dad, brother and me.

The decor and the style of furniture were very 1980s - my parents bought most of it new when we moved in. It was pretty ordinary - leather couches, that sort of thing.

The atmosphere was a family one. It was a light and warm house and, yes, I was happy there. I liked Dalgety Bay but my life did not revolve around the house. I was a teenager there and these things aren't that important at that age.

For the same reason it is difficult to remember which was my favourite room, but certainly it would have had a television and video. Invariably I would be watching snooker and my hero, Jimmy White.

When we were first there I spent most of my time outside playing football with my friends, but the Christmas when I was 13 I was bought a small snooker table and that took over. I was mad on snooker after that and my memories of the house revolve around it. I played my first games on that table; later I travelled to a club in Dunfermline to play on a full- size table.

We left when I was about 15. My parents separated and my mother, younger brother and I moved closer to Edinburgh, to a council house in the village of Kirkliston. I was sad to move, of course - my parents were separating - but I was lucky because I had snooker to take up much of my time.

I now live in a beautiful town in central Scotland called Auchterarder. The countryside is magnificent, the people fantastic and I am surrounded by golf courses - I am a mile from Gleneagles Hotel. The house is pretty big for me, my wife, my son and our two dogs and I just love everything about it. It would be unfair to compare it with my childhood home - it is a different situation, different time, but I could not be happier where I am today.

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