I am very pleased to say that the West Yorkshire Archive service have accepted the Back-Chat Collection interviews into their permanent archives thus ensuring their accessibility to the public for many generations to come.

You can hear this interview by simply clicking the West Yorkshire Archive Link where you will find all of the Back-Chat Collection interviews listed in alphabetical order along with captioned photographs.

If you would like to contact The Back-Chat Collection please do email me at carloharrison1947@gmail.com.

To listen to the interviews which are now hosted on the
West Yorkshire Archive Service click here.

John Birchall


February 1946 in Mexborough


15th July 2020


Grew up in Yeadon and Guiseley, later in Keighley then France and back to Keighley.

Interviewed at Rufford Avenue, Yeadon

Date of Interview

15th July 2019

“I am more than happy to give you permission to use John’s recording and photographs.”

Lesley Birchall

John Birchall lost his fight with cancer on 15th July 2020 – exactly one year after this interview.

If you want to know what bravery sounds like then listen to this gentle, softly spoken man who was under no illusions about his cancer when he spoke to me.

We talk frankly and yet easily about his journey with cancer which started at his home in France.

The cancer is by no means the whole of John’s life, but he wanted to tell the story because in his own words ‘if it benefits or helps someone else then the story is worth telling.’

Such a nice man as you will hear for yourselves as you listen to this very brave soul.

Interviewer: Carlo Harrison

Cataloguer: Fiona Quinton

Sound Engineer David Myers

HTML5 Audio Player

You can listen to the entire recording by clicking the start arrow or, you can move the slider to one of times shown for the headings opposite, they are a guide to the many things we chatted about.
Buying A House And living In France
Teenage Years With Dennis Court
Working Life as an Electrician 
Flyover Shaw Lane Social Club


Please take into consideration when listening to these interviews that the meaning of language changes over time and that interviewees have not intended to cause offence by anything said which now may be thought to be unacceptable.

Recording this social history, chatting to different people about a whole host of subjects has been a real pleasure, such an interesting and I think worthwhile project for people to listen to both now and in years to come.

Thank you for visiting this website.

Carlo Harrison