When Bill Dodds left school his father was adamant he wouldn’t follow him down the pit – but that hasn’t stopped Bill retiring to a DAMHA home.
“I come from a long line of miners and my dad worked on the coalface at the Havannah Colliery before suffering an injury and being moved into the control room,” says Bill.
“He didn’t want me to become a miner so I trained as a joiner, then a policeman and then for 30 years worked as a salesman.”
Bill, 74, was raised in Lemington in the West End of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne before moving across the River Tyne to Burnopfield. When he retired aged 70 he needed to find a new place to live and put his name down with DAMHA
“There aren’t as many former miners about these days so the list is open to others and I was only on a few weeks when a bungalow came up in Burnopfield which was perfect for me as I was living in the area.
“The bungalows aren’t very big but are ideal for a single person. It’s a nice residential area, a bit of greenery and away from the main road,” says Bill.
Bill, who was our 2018 good neighbour of the year, is now the Residents’ Representative for six bungalows.
In his role, Bill keeps in touch with residents and raises with the Association any concerns they might have. He’s also regularly updated with details of any scheduled upgrades or maintenance.
“They are good landlords, the properties are well maintained. This summer all the windows and frames are being replaced with double glazing” says Bill, who reveals his secret to a happy retirement: “I play golf twice a week and spend the rest of the time putting jobs off.”