Janet's Profile

 Email: j.swann1144@btinternet.com               

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                     My Profile
  Half a degree BAH:   Open University. Distinction for music
Lord Mackentee Borough of Walthamstow award winnet of 1961.
George Gascoigne Award top school award: Highest award any girl can be given by the school.
Founder member of the Wingfield Music Club, Walthamstow, for the physically disabled.
Played and sung in the St. Botolph’s Music Society, Colchester. I had compositions played and sung.
Also was a member of the Colne Endeavour Band and did musical arrangements for them which were also played by the Metropolitan Police Band and YCMA Band.
      When I left school at sixteen and a half with the Gascoigne Diploma and studying 8 GCEs, I obtained work as a junior clerk learning office duties and shorthand typing in the office at King's Laundries in Billet Road; and cycled there. After six months, the firm closed down and I then worked in the city as Miss Hardie's assistant; we had our own little office and my duties were varied.  Miss Hardie told me that she only had to show me her book keeping machine once for me to work it; she used to leave me in charge of her office often. She was a wonderful person who never married: she lost her fiancé during the 2nd world war.
      My duties with Miss Hardie were varied: they included telex; banda; shorthand typing; sales analysis; dealing with the Company Secretary; and Managing Directors. The firm was Tico Press and the head office was positioned under the Reader's Digest in the Old Bailey Buildings, Ludgate Circus.
     After eighteen months, I was made redundant again and Miss hardie wanted another position with me, but this did not transpire.  However, she helped me to get into the Sumlock Comptometer College in Berner Street, West End of London. After passing their exams, I obtained work, where I worked for forty men who were accountants, some chartered, in the Head office of Colgate Palmolive when the firm was in Oxford street London.
      I have worked for East London Calculating Services as a temp for Jan Loyns, another lovely boss. She aent me to head offices all oiver London and Essex Then I work in the Head Office in accounts at the Oxazalid, near Debden railway station and the Bank of England printing works.  Then I worked for the Swan Finance Company in Lought0n High Road, Essex, where a fraud was uncovered involving stolen cheques: I used to go over the cheques, and saw this was happening as the files to the cheques were missing. Then I worked for the Grove Motel in Epping.
I was an overall winner of a Singer's sewing competition with a Vogue pattern tailored suit. I believe this was in1962.
I went to Trinity College of Music, Jame's Street, London, studying  piano.on, leaving at the age of 19 years I believe. I was also studying music composition under Lesley Barnes a concert pianist. I believe Wingfield paid for these lessons through the Galbenkian  Foundation Trust. She charged 2 guineas an hour and she stayed all evening!
I later became a missionary for seven years and, during this period, marrying before having my daughter, V.Racheal.
        V Racheal is a very good guitarist, singer, violinist, plays the guitar well, and is a brilliant artist like her grandfather, my father, Leonard Charles Cattier, who taught her. She won a Butlins drawing competition in Clacton, at the age of 8 years and came top for drawing in the first year at her secondary school.

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                            Janet aged  19 years, outside 25 Richmond Road with Prudence, her loving cat.

                                                     Quotes by PD James

Hello, I am trying speech recognition. It is getting easier. When I was a little girl, my mother sat me on her knee reading to me and I would not let her stop until she got to the of the book. Also, if she tried to skip a page I would know even though I was only two and a half years old. On a train one day, my mother told me, she was reading to me a cow boy story whilst I was sitting on her knee, and she tried to skip a few pages, but I noticed what she had done and made her know it by saying: 'd d d d d!' pointing avidly for her to go to the correct page!   She was well aware how bright I was and I think she appreciated that.

PD James (1920-27th of November 2014)  said:


             'Speaking into a Dictaphone gives a most natural voice.' 

            : 'If I did not carry on writing, I will be a failed writer. I left school early,

              and at the age of 16 found work as a filing clerk. I regret  starting my

             novels so late, aged forty.' 


But she became a millionaire fifteen years later, when her novels became widely published.

PD James married, but sadly her husband was admitted to a psychiatric asylum with schizophrenia after coming back to England from serving abroad during the 2nd World War; he later died. Also, her mother was hospitalized with severe mental illness. PD James died this month, November 2014, peacefully in her home at the age of 94.

I suppose with my speaking problem, I would find it harder than she did. I will never make any money out of my work. Sad, as this may well be, like PD James I get a lot of pleasure out of my works,  writing and music. 

Herbert and Lilly Lyon said I would get my work published, and I did become a celebrity during the 196os, having my music played and mixed with professional musicians. But I chose to become a  missionary and then married!  My then husband became a school teacher and taught psychiatry and psychology in the evenings. We bought a house, moving from Chigwell where we had our daughter, Racheal.

I always loved writing and found great pleasure in holding pen and paper. I was always reading. My early experience of joining a library left me traumatised: the librarian thought I was unable to read because of a speech impediment, leading me to the babies section. I  howled and did not stop until she showed me the adult books from which I chose to read 'Lorna Doon'. I was nearly 11 years old, and was in my school uniform ready to go to George Gascoigne Central School, which was the equivalent of a grammar school, and specialized in science and mathematics. It also had a good English language section.      

      However, the school, George Gascoigne, became an early experimental comprehensive in the time of R Boyson, who was an Education exponant. Fortunately, I only had a year of the Comprehensive arrangement. I did not like it at all and could not concentrate on my work that year. But I made up for it in the final fifth year, leaving school with my school diploma, after studying about 10 subjects including eight GCEs. I  was later given an A level in dress making: I was the over all winner in the Singers sewing competition with a tailored suit.  I also studied shorthand typing and was taught by Lily Lyon who was school Secretary at the newly built Lord Mackentee Technical School in Walthamstow. I also went to South West Essex Technical College in the evening to learn the same. 

      I also bought teach yourself books in English, music and languages: I liked learning.      So you can see, all through my life I have continued learning. But now I am seventy years old and have mobility problems and other health issues, relating to Cerebral Palsy, I am quite happy to put my work on a website where I can let others appreciate my work. 



1} Profile

2} Quotes from

PD James.


                                                 My Gascigne Award presentation in my school Hall.

From left to right: my father, Leonard Charles Cattier, wearing his lecturer' s blazer and tie, he taught at the London School of Lithographic Printing; my mother, Ivy Ethel Melinda Cattier, in a white cardigan, is sitting in the front; head boy; Micheal Wright and his mother and father with my young brother, Stephen; Headmaster; James Dixon;  a counclor standing at the end of the row. Our Senior Mistress, Miss Grange, is sitting on the right end of the row next to the Mayoress who is wearinq a hat. The Mayor of Walthamstow, Mr Readhead, is presenting me with my award.


My music arrangements were played at the Mercury Theatre at Cochester.

The Wingfield Music Club became a Trust.  We played at the Royal Festival Hall and on Radio and Televiasion. Many famous people supported us.