As many of you know, John died on 11th April 21 aged 86, having been diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour in January. He died peacefully in his sleep in our Spanish home as he wished, and he now lies at peace in the village cemetery in Sedella.
Othona played a huge part in his life from his first visit aged 18 in 1953, when he was taken to the camp by Harold Johnson. He met his first wife Sylvia at Othona Bradwell, and he took their growing family of Janet, Peter, Malcolm and Andrew down to the camp every summer. In 1969 Norman told John that he was thinking of closing the camp down partly due to his poor health, and asked if there was any way that John could move nearer to take a more active part. At the time the Hardy’s were living in Norfolk, but John managed to get a job at what was then Mid-Essex Technical College in Chelmsford, which was both nearer and gave him the whole summer off so he could spend it at the camp. If you are interested in reading a much fuller account of his involvement with Othona between 1953 and 1979, go to www.johnhardybooks.com/norman-and-othona to read something he wrote many years ago in response to a request from Janet Marshall.
I have decided to keep his website live - www.johnhardybooks.com - as a memorial to him, and all the books will remain available on Amazon. We always said that the books were like our family, and because of his visual problems I was very involved in their production. John wrote a biography for the website, you can read it at www.johnhardybooks.com/about-me and there are also many free stories to read on it, including ‘The Othona Valediction’ set around the chapel and the community, which you can read at www.johnhardybooks.com/tov or purchase as an EBook on Amazon for 99p - www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B014BZGFV2
I hope you enjoy reading these articles and his stories. I hope to visit Othona Bradwell at some point to revisit where it all began for us in 1979, and I can also be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org