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on 29 August 2017
My father was born in this era and in this area. Was also in the same class as brother Eddie. He was later asked if he wanted to work with the firm. I'm So glad he turned the work down and was a great father and husband. I had my father at home not visiting him in prison. Brought back memories of the area I was also brought up in.
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on 4 June 2013
I was born in Camberwell in 1930 and remember the " Richardson Gang"
I read the book and it evoked a lot of memories of war torn London.
My Aunt Annie lived in Sears Street the site of the scrap metal yard.
A good book and a good read. Recommended.
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on 11 December 2015
Book as expected , simple reading , book was very grubby on cover , had to wipe it over before reading , if that had been done before dispatched, would have earned a 5 star ...... Take note
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on 20 September 2017
Awful book written about an awful person.
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on 14 October 2012
I really rather enjoyed this book.It gave an insight into the rise of a rogue from the 'nicking'of scrap metal in Camberwell to the 'nicking' of mineral resources that would eventually become scrap metal in South Africa, and this whole story is interspersed with the trial of Charlie Richarson for GBH in 1966 for which he received 25 years in prison. Tere was some amusing incidents in the book,most notably the hapless arsonists, who must have played a further part in The Italian Job.
I is always difficult to know what part Bob Long wrote and edited, and what part Charlie Richardson did, but you get the feeling that Charlie would have included the parts that he wanted ncluded or else.
Good read, and insight into the old fashion world of gangs in London,even if in the end Ronnie Kray did go to far.
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on 12 November 2012
After reading about The Krays, ebay recommended this book as other readers had purchased it. Out of curiosity as to who The Richardsons were I purchased this book. Frankly I couldn't put it down, and to think all this was going on in one part of London whilst The Krays controlled the other part of London when I was just a young boy. Whilst it seemed far fetched with a dash of poetic licence, I'm happy to believe life really was like that. Brilliant book, and really cheap on ebay. The postage was more than the book.
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on 18 March 2014
Fantastic book very funny great if you've got a scene of humour like me. Had me laughing out loud. Real page turner right to the end. Great story of a man who lived a very interesting live.
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on 21 November 2016
Loved it .Charlie spares no punches as he recalls his life ,starting as a boy growing up in wartorn London and how by nineteen he had his own business. He recalls intermittently the travesty that was his trial,the evidence being so blatantly corrupt that today it would not have resulted in such an obscenely long sentence,where the judge wanted to set an example because of the publicity, which also served to prejudice the outcome.If he had stuck to the straight and narrow he would have been a very wealthy and astute businessman,as he was a highly intelligent man.I have read Eddie's story too which is equally as good,infact I have enjoyed this better than anything I have read about the Krays.
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VINE VOICEon 3 November 2002
Charlie Richardson is an immensely intelligent if somewhat cynical person. That is EXACTLY what hits you between the eyes when you read this book.
In many respects, Charlie needed to write this account of his life, as it plugs that empty slot in the jigsaw of Sixties crime. The Richardsons were undoubtedly a major force, but Charlie does not dwell overly on the seedier side of his activities. Instead a previously unreported version of events unfolds here of a man who could have been the Branson of the 1960s. Entrepreneurial, workaholic, a driven man who would have been in the billionaire league by now had his 'honest' businesses progressed in the manner they had until his arrest.
For someone who took the punishment he received a lack of humour can be excused in this book. A must read for Sixties crime students, but don't expect a Freddie Foreman type story. Charlie shoots from the hip.
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on 27 August 2012
Many books on 1950s and 1960s crime merely repeat what has been written in other books. Charlie Richardson was at the centre of London gangland and his story needed telling. He obviously believes he was harshly dealt with and there is some justification in this. For more on early London gangs read the excellent Gangs of London.Gangs of London
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