A success in the family

The author Michael Carr has stated that: “All kids are gifted; some just open their packages earlier than others”. I was reminded of this comment this week when I received some news from my younger brother.
We were three kids in Manchester in the 1960s. My sister Silvia and I both did well at a school and went on to do degrees at university. Our younger brother Ralph struggled academically at school and eventually became a postman.
Later though, he took his degree and then his MA and then his PhD – you can check his credentials here.
He has just become a professor at the University of Salford. Well done, our kid!


  • Mavis Smith

    And look where Alan Johnson is now.
    Your Brother will have benefited from being a postman. Some of the best, kindest, caring people I ever knew were the postmen in my branch and in the UCW, as it was then, in those early days of my working life.

  • Billy Hayes

    Roger, congratulations to Ralph. Billy Hayes

  • Janet

    Yes, congratulations to him! But is it nature, nurture, coincidence or your influence that puts him in the same academic sphere as you? Also, did you have much trouble opening the wrong mail when you were both R Darlington at one address and again with your son?

  • Roger Darlington

    Hi, Janet.
    I doubt that I had any influence whatsoever on Ralph’s academic success. It’s down to his talent and hard work.
    I actually believe that most people have more talent that is realised – even often by them – and that a lot of the difference between actual achievement is the result of opportunity (or lack of it) and chance.
    As for confusion in mail addressed to R Darlington – yes, there was some. But it’s rather fun sharing initials.


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