Membership of a Rotary Club is a great way to get to know people in your area and one of the little rituals we have when new members join us is to ask them to give a talk to the other members about their life.
We've had some great talks over the years with stories of adventures in snake infested rivers in rural India and journeys across Europe during the Second War and this evening Club member Roger Webb added to that list by taking us through his life story and in a sense through the recent life of the industrial West Midlands in the process.
Born to the son of a local pit owner Roger saw the last of the numerous small shallow pits which dotted the Black Country and on which the Industrial Revolution was made. Times were different back then so when it came time for Roger to leave school in 1963 it was simply a matter of opening the local paper and picking the job you fancied from one of the many ads. Working his way up the ladder from commercial apprentice to sales director Roger has seen great changes in the Midlands economy as the manufacturing companies that he was associated with steadily lost ground in the face of Government indifference to overseas competition and were replaced by local distributors of imported products.
Outside of his work Roger has always looked to play his part in the local community and he has been involved with numerous amateur dramatic societies. Roger certainly has a great love of the stage and whilst he was unable to follow his childhood dreams of making his living on the stage he continues to tread the boards with a local amateur group and he has had the satisfaction of seeing his own son Richie follow his artistic dreams to become an award winning comedian and composer.