RICK JACKSON: The dreaded back-to-school feeling I remember so well

Rick says it felt like a friend had died when Diana was killed 20 years ago today
Rick says it felt like a friend had died when Diana was killed 20 years ago today
Have your say

I used to hate going back to school after the six-week summer holiday.

I’d get so used to going to the beach and playing with friends, school seemed pointless.

The schoolbag was very important – it was a status symbol.

The last week would drag as I was marched around clothes shops for my new school uniform.

It would also necessitate a trip to Portsmouth on the ferry to get the best shoes.

First day nerves were ramped up by putting on your new clothes for the first time.

Crisp white shirts, tight socks and pristine black trousers, this was really happening.

The highlight though was the new school bag and pencil case.

Should I go for the fluffy fabric variety or the rectangular aluminium type?

One thing was for certain, I had to have a new fountain pen.

If I was very lucky, it would be a Parker or a Sheaffer.

Mum believed it improved you’re handwriting.

To this day people still comment on how smart mine is.

The schoolbag was very important. It was a status symbol.

One year I had a very good blue Adidas sports bag with the three white stripes.

Another year it was a rather cool rucksack mum bought from the Charlotte Street market with the A-Team on the back.

The year 1985 sticks in my mind as a memorable school bag.

I specifically opened a junior savers account with the Midland Bank to join the Griffin Savers Group.

My reward was a very cool pencil case and a jet black sports bag.

It had big pockets on either side and was very capacious.

I only opened the account to get the bag.

And I still use it as my main current account to this very day. No bag though.

Once the first day nerves were out of the way, it was nice to get back into the routine, plus the school looked smart and smelt of fresh paint.

I will never forget the feeling of putting a hole in those nice new trousers in the first week after playing football in the playground.

All these years on, I know as a parent how annoying that is.


I have a cut across my nose, which is a bit bruised and swollen.

I also have a couple of cuts above my eyebrows. No I didn’t fight Floyd Mayweather – I was headbutted by my son.

Lying on the grass, my three-year-old son suddenly wanted to play horsey-horsey.

Sadly, he then decided to drop all his weight on my head, sending my sunglasses flying.

Blood was pouring from my nose as I bravely struggled to turn the sausages on the barbecue.

I’m wondering how many injuries parents have received from their children?

Kicked shins, black eyes and cut feet from Lego are a few phoned in on my Wave 105 breakfast show.

One thing is for certain, kids hurt!


As we remember Princess Diana on the anniversa ry of her death, the footage shown on television this week of her funeral brought back all those emotions from 20 years ago.

People openly wept over a woman they’d never met. But it felt like a good friend had died.

Someone we first saw as a naive teenager thrust into the public eye in 1980, to a beautiful women who gave us two handsome princes.

She had that air of normality mixed with glamour and celebrity the other royals didn’t.

To have her life cut so short in such a traumatic way struck deep into the public psyche.

As with Americans and Kennedy, we all remember where we were when the People’s Princess died.