I was born in Liverpool which I believe has given me a great interest in and . I attended Birkenhead School and Exeter College, Oxford before going to Avery Hill College in London to train as a primary school teacher.

I have a great interest in my family history and through my various ancestors have connections with the following towns:- Cheslyn Hay and Walsall in the West Midlands;  Bebington, Crewe and Ellesmere Port in Cheshire; Preston and Wigan in Lancashire; Balham, Clapham and Woolwich in London; Millport in Scotland.

My paternal grandfather came from Crewe and unlike his brothers trained as a teacher, eventually becoming a headmaster. He also fought in both World Wars. In the 1st World War he fought in the Battle of the Somme and at Pashendale where he was awarded the Military Cross for bravery.

My maternal grandmother was born in India, the daughter of a soldier serving in the British Army. As a nurse she travelled around the Middle East and Far East, working in Hong Kong, Burma and Turkey.