I was born into a British working-class family in Scarborough, Yorkshire. I have an elder brother and sister. We were brought up in what is now called a single-parent family. Our mother was a waitress. When she died, we kids went off in different directions. Not choice, it just happened. After something of a chaotic period I ended up with foster parents living in Darwen, Lancashire, aged eleven. They took me with them when they moved to Manchester.
At the age of twelve I was offered an interview for a place in the Manchester High School of Art, a specialist junior art school in the normal secondary system. A place had become available because a pupil had climbed into the building next door for a bet with his mates. It was Strangeways...
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