Latest Issue

Searching for mother

At the age of eight he stood by his mother's grave. More than 70 years later, he tried to find it again

By Richard Hoggart   March 1999

The death certificate, when we finally acquired one a year or so ago, said that Adelaide (an error; her name was “Adeline”) Emma Hoggart had died at the age of 46, and was buried on 17th February 1927. The cause of death was tuberculosis. She seems to have died on the 15th; the address given as her “abode” was “123 Beckett Street,” which was and is the huge St James Infirmary in a grim part of north Leeds.

Two days from death to burial in the local churchyard-a quick procedure. A further 67 years passed before one of us even…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to

More From Prospect