Community gets behind writer to help him realise his dream

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TEAM work and community spirit led to a 66-year-old man realising a life-long dream and having his writing published.

A launch will be held this evening to celebrate the work of Gareth Rees – a book called Read Rees.

Mr Rees, from Portsmouth, has travelled all over the world writing about his experiences along the way but had published very little of it.

When Alex Sebley, a friend of his, got hold of the writing, he was determined to see it published.

Mr Sebley set up his own independent publishing company and set about raising the funds to publish 250 copies.

The 34-year-old, from Portsmouth, said: ‘It has always been my ambition to print the work of this remarkable writer and dear friend.’

The book was funded through the website Kickstarter, by donations from the public which totalled nearly £1,000.

The book is made up of a variety of observations and journal entries, written throughout Mr Rees’ life.

They range from accounts of his travels in the Middle East to diary entries written while he worked as a cleaner at a naval base in Portsmouth.

Mr Rees said: ‘I’m a doodler, I write newspaper-length things in the style of a journal. They’re whimsical I hope.’

The publication was helped by Tom Sykes, a lecturer at the University of Portsmouth, and sponsored by the university.

A launch is at Blackwell’s bookshop at the university tonight at 7pm.