Author’s reflections on freighter travel

Author Clive Wilkinson.
Author Clive Wilkinson.

A Rothbury author has written an account of freighter travel in the modern age, making links with his own personal family history – and the new book is out tomorrow.

Reflections from the Monkey Deck: Cruising the World by Freighters, by Clive Wilkinson, is more than a nautical voyage; it is also a journey of self-reflection upon past experiences and self-discovery.

The front cover of the book.

The front cover of the book.

The book offers a fascinating insight into modern container shipping, but one that is heavily invested with human interest.

Reflections from the Monkey Deck has text rich with geographical and geological references.

This book also offers much to the reader in terms of historical and mythological detail and the storyline hones in on different aspects as natural geography changes with the flow of the tides.

Clive trained as a religious studies teacher and began his teaching career in Surrey. A few years later he went to Rhodesia/Zimbabwe to teach at a mission school, immediately after Ian Smith’s Unilateral Declaration of Independence.

Returning to the UK, he attended Newcastle University, where he took a degree in geography before returning to Africa to undertake research on human migration in Lesotho for his PhD.

He spent nearly 20 years training geography teachers and environmental studies undergraduates in the UK.

After retirement he undertook research on youth homelessness and young people not in employment, education or training, the results of which were published under the title The Drop Out Society.

He then worked for several years doing research on rural development in Northumberland. Now fully retired he enjoys walking, gardening, writing, playing table tennis, ceilidh dancing and, of course, travelling slowly.

Reflections From the Monkey Deck: Cruising the World by Freighters (ISBN 9781784555894) is priced £6.99 paperback and will be available to buy from, and various bookshops from tomorrow.

It is published by Austin Macauley Publishers.