Anna & Dad
Hello Anna, could you tell me about the original photograph?
Well it's at Wallington, which is a National Trust place which we visit quite a lot.
Can you remember what's in the photograph?
The bench, just in front of the house, the house is probably the main part of Wallington.
Who's in the picture?
Me and my dad.
...and do you know who took the photograph?
It was probably my mum.
Is it somewhere where you go now?
We've been there quite a lot since my dad died.
What do you like most about going there?
Probably the playgrounds!
We tried to go climbing in the trees today as well.
[Mum: There's a special tree there that you're allowed to climb on, because lots of trees you're not allowed to climb.]
That's a good one is it? Can you get nice and high?
When we went back there today and retook the photo, how did you feel about that?
I was ok. It was sort of making me a bit upset, but mostly I was ok.
What was making you a bit upset?
It was making me think about going there with my dad.
When you went there with your dad did you have a nice time?
What were your favourite things about your dad?
He was quite funny, he had a good sense of humour. He never really got angry with people. He looked after me most of the time, he probably looked after me more than mum looked after me.
[Mum: I went back to work, didn't I, so it was dad who stayed at home when you were tiny.]
So dad looked after you from when you were a baby?
Yeah, I think I got to know him very very well.
When he was looking after you, what sort of things did you do?
When we came home he used to give me and Thomas apple and fruit and we used to sit in front of the telly and watch TV.
Would dad watch TV with you?
No, he would do stuff in the kitchen and we would sit in the living room.
"He was quite funny, he had a good sense of humour. He never really got angry with people. He looked after me most of the time."
Do you have any funny stories about dad?
I remember he used to say this joke, because he wore glasses, so he used to say, 'Where are my glasses?', but they were on the top of his head!
..and then what did you say?
I said they're on top of you're head!
...and then he could find them!
Were there any other places that you went with daddy?
Seaton Delaval, Belsay Castle, Tynemouth Priory
And these are all places in Northumberland where you live?
Which one was your favourite to go to with dad?
So Wallington was the one you really liked the most!
[Mum: I think that's because of the playgrounds! It has the best playgrounds doesn't it?]
I was wondering if whether you look at photographs of daddy sometimes?
You just showed me some photos in the front room, can you remember those pictures?
I remember when we went on holiday, first we went to Herefordshire and then we went to Norfolk. They were both quite good holidays.
How does it feel when you look at the pictures of daddy?
It makes me quite upset.
When you look at the pictures, does it feel good to be able to see pictures of daddy?
Yeah, because I don't really remember how he looks or how he sounds anymore. It's basically when I listen to videos and look at pictures it brings back loads of memories.
So is it quite important to have pictures so you can look back and remember who your dad was?
"Yeah, because I don't really remember how he looks or how he sounds anymore. It's basically when I listen to videos and look at pictures it brings back loads of memories."
How does it feel now that daddy's not here?
It's very upsetting because most of the people in my class have loads of dads and it makes me upset when I see people with their dads having fun times.
How does that feel?
It makes me feel like I want to be with my dad when I see them, because they're with their dad but I'm not with my dad.
Does it feel a bit unfair?
But do you think you're going to be ok?
Yeah, cos I have my mum and my brother.
Because you'll all stick together and look after each other even though daddy's not here?
Are there any things that you do to remember your dad?
We have his favourite food, because he was born in Vienna, so we have Wiener Schnitzel on his birthday and the day when he died?
That's lovely. Can you describe to me what wiener schnitzel is, what's it like?
It's basically like schnitzel, pork schnitzel.
Do you like it, is it tasty?
[Mum: What's around the pork?]
Nice! So you have that on his birthday and also on the anniversary of the day he passed away?
So that's a way of remembering him and celebrating him?
[Mum: We have a place that we go to as well don't we]
We go to Tynemouth Priory because that's where we've got his bench and like a little secret garden.
"It's very upsetting because most of the people in my class have loads of dads and it makes me upset when I see people with their dads having fun times."
How does it feel when you go to the secret garden and to the bench?
It's quite nice because just outside the secret garden there's a little field so sometimes if mum wants to be left alone me and Thomas go and play in the field.
Is it quite a quiet place?
Do you think about your dad when you're there?
Yeah, because he used to go there lots of times.
On his bench are there any words?
Yeah, it says his name and then it says which year he died to which year he was born and then it says 'A lovely husband and dad'.
That's really nice. Do you think you'll go back there lots?
It'll be a nice place that you can go and think about dad.
You told me also about the cake that you make that dad really liked?
Googlehuph? Can you describe for me how you make it?
You make the doughy bit, then you put it in a special mould tin and then you get the dough, put it in but only fill it half up. Then you get the rest of the dough and you mix it with cocoa powder, then you pour that in on top of the plain dough, put it in the oven. So one bit is like a vanilla-y bit and the other is like a chocolatey bit.
Is it tasty? Your favourite?
When do you make that one?
On our birthdays and the special days like when he died and his birthday.
So you have that one quite a often?
Who have you got with you here?
Who is Cuddles?
He's a toy. After the funeral we had a little party and the head teacher couldn't come to the party but she came for a short time and she gave me and my brother a build-a-bear and mine's called Cuddles.
What type of animal is Cuddles?
What's Cuddles wearing today?
His England football shirt and blue and white shorts
He looks very smart today! So you like football? Did you watch it with Dad sometimes?
No, I didn't really like football when I was little but now I've sort of grown into liking football.
[Mum: But, I know we talked earlier about which team you supported, which is Newcastle, but there is another team that you support isn't there because of dad]
West Ham. We support West Ham because that's the team that my dad supported when he was little.
So you still follow West Ham for him?
So what happens when Newcastle play against West Ham?
I don't support any team, I support them both!
[Mum: Happy whatever the outcome then!]
I'm most happy when it's a draw.
That's very good of you! You mentioned the funeral, what was that like?
It was quite upsetting and I stayed with my granny in the rows while my mum was up at the front. I remember there were lots of poems and music.
Were there lots of people there that you knew?
Was it nice to see them?
How did you feel about being there?
It was very upsetting, especially when the curtains closed.
It's often quite a sad day.
Yeah, it's probably one of the saddest days of my life.
You have things and ways of remembering dad, like having the cake and wiener schnitzel, do you think its nice to think back and remember him now?
Do you feel maybe you get less sad than you used to?
Probably, because I've got more things to think about now that I'm older.