Wonderful speaking with Ann Carlton about her new book Penny Lane And All That published by Y Lolfa. The book is a rich tapestry of social history of the area of Liverpool made famous by The Beatles and, which was home to Ann and her family. Welsh origins within the family were influential on her upbringing and Ann describes the ‘Little Wales’ in Liverpool, which manifested as a result of Welsh people heading to the city to find work. Ann’s father was the Liverpool Town Clerk and he went on to become the CEO of Merseyside City Council.
The book begins by setting out the very fabric of Liverpool life. One gets to know just how its people and its industry ticked. Ann skilfully sets out the social melting pot, which saw the city taking in the Irish who were fleeing from famine and looking for work as were the Welsh, the Chinese and Africans. With them they brought their own cultures, traditions and religions, which were added to the already colourful pallet of a city where fortunes were made and poverty lay around every corner.