Why are there , to my knowledge, few statues in the UK to truly good people like Sir Roger Bannister but plenty to men who exploited their fellow human beings or made their mark using legal violence in war? My first book Oxford Castaways was launched in the Cast Gallery at the Ashmolean where Roger was in his element with Greek sporting heroes. But there was a lot more to him that that world breaking sporting achievement at Iffley Road in 1954.
Helen is seen here with the late Colin Dexter and Roger Bannister @ the launch . Roger was a reluctant castaway but, after he did it for Moyra, he became a convert and was the most supportive of all the castaways apart from artist Weimin He who designed the cover.
Not many people realise the extent of Roger’s (all positive) contributions to this country. To my knowledge, there is no statue of him in the UK but there is one in Vancouver in Canada!
The Madras Courier published a feature by me about Roger after he died.
Soon after our interview in 2011, Roger wrote his memoir Twin Tracks. Moyra is currently working on hers. She seems reluctant to use her fabulous sketches . I hope someone persuades her to include them. We have plenty of monuments celebrating slave traders – so is money the main consideration?My favourite photograph of Roger was taken, not long before he died, with his daughter Charlotte at the launch of the final castaway anthology of life stories – Oxford Castaways 3 . The publication costs were paid for by poet, artist and dramatist Dwina Gibb the wife of Robin Gibb of the Bee Gees . Thanks to her all proceeds went to Sobell House hospice.
This 30 illustrated zoom LECTURE includes some of the people I think we SHOULD celebrate people like castaway Icolyn Smith who inspired a character in my latest novel written with another castaway ,the inspirational Nancy Mudenyo Hunt.