Prison to podium

I have had many positives since being released from prison on the 9th June 2017, however, none more so than seeing my name on an advertisement for this years War of Words. It’s surreal to think that this time last year I was still in prison dreaming of these days, wondering if I will be able to do what it is I wanted to do, well planning to do still at that stage.

Ironically, mentioning positives, as I write this blog today, I write-through wet eyes because I am in a very dark place. Maybe I am writing it to prove to myself that; I am not a bad person, my intentions are true, my heart is pure and my friendship real because I have become drained from having to explain and justify myself to others anymore. I wonder how many people really! understand mental health. I know they say they do and they don’t judge and go on to do nothing else. I tried to explain myself earlier to someone, I won’t name anyone because they wasn’t to know, and they said no don’t be silly, such an insignificant throw away comment that in this current state I took totally badly, but how do I explain that to the person without making them feel bad, it isn’t their fault, and if you are reading this please don’t feel bad, on normal (whatever that is) rational days it wouldn’t matter one iota. It’s very difficult to not take anything the wrong way when you are in a hole, hanging on by your finger tips.

I have taken a massive drop from the lofty heights of confidence to self loathing and isolation in the click of a switch. A fall that at this exact moment in time I see as the knockout blow, or at least I am at the count of nine. I needed to do something to at least get rid some of the shit going on in my head right now. Even a decision not to make any decisions in this state is causing its own paradox.

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Don’t you just fucking hate life sometimes!!!!

 

Okay, off load time.

I can only talk of my own mental health and will not compare mine to others because although some traits are indeed shared, it is an illness unique to the individual. Not only was I judged by friends not knowing the full facts, I was also dropped like a brick. It is as if people made assumptions based on, all I can tell, their own conscience as I can honestly say I really do not see where I went wrong, which again has put me in a quandary. I am in such a battle right now, a battle that at 18:15 I appear to be winning but cannot yet see the finish line or the light at the end of the tunnel. I know I am winning at the moment because I have kept my phone off, I have stayed off social media and I haven’t made any irrational decisions, YET!. One battle I am involved in is not deleting my group I set up on Facebook called DRB Support because I feel like shit and fuck everything, but I don’t want to do it. I am so proud of what it is achieving and it has exceeded my expectations. It is doing what it says on the tin and to sit back sometimes watching conversations of support happen while people share their inner thoughts is a sight to behold indeed, especially knowing it was because of me, so why don’t I feel proud and why am I even having thoughts of deleting it under the heading fuck everything? I said on there once about my mental health that I didn’t ask for any disorders for my birthday, nor did I ask Santa: Dear Father Christmas Please this year could you put PTSD, DID, BPD, ASPD and ADHD in my stocking this Christmas, if I wanted that many letters I would have asked for scrabble, funny that, that comes scrambled in a box, bit like my brain. This is my group:

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I believe every word of that statement as well, yeah my past is littered with mistakes but I have learnt from them and my actions, I felt, would speak louder than my words, clearly not. I don’t understand life out here in society any more. People are even doing each other wrong or are accusing each other of doing wrong. WHY?? I don’t get it, and even when people do fall out they spend the next, god knows how long, telling anyone that will listen how the other person means nothing to them and that they won’t waste another moment on them. Thought love was unconditional same as friendship, if you tell someone you love them 30 times a day is that more love someone feels than someone who only says it once, if you speak to a friend twenty times a day do you therefore love them more than the one you speak to once a month, I have a friend I probably haven’t spoken to in 4 or 5 months but I know as soon as I do, we will just pick up where we left off. It seems to have happened with the rise of Facebook, I mean before Facebook you was happy if two of your mates said your hair looked nice, now people want 26,000,000 people to like it. I am also, after eight months, still trying to work out why I was so excited about getting out because at this moment I wish I was back, and that’s taking on board the ‘careful what you wish for metaphor.

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Identity

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I am not sure if any of this will resonate with anyone, but I have a memory of my childhood which included a dog in the house, this, apparently, never happened. If that was the case how much more of my childhood is made up of thoughts I have. So! I had a little think and realised that most of it is a blur to be honest, some things I remember like they were yesterday and definitely know took place, obviously some I do not remember, and some are just feelings. Feelings can’t lie, I never felt a memory of feelings to the dog, just the dog and stroking it but no emotion. Then I have feelings that I cannot ascertain to a particular memory or memories. They are there, they are real. Another thing with feelings and something I tell others, is that you should never apologise for your feelings, they are personal to you. With that in mind I will continue.

This isn’t meant as a slight at my parents or my siblings, it was how I felt, I don’t know why I felt like I did but I did.

I have never really felt as if I have belonged to my family, a thought I carried with me into later life. So! anything that happened that made me feel left out was multiplied and re-enforced my feelings of isolation from the family unit. I don’t know why that was and I probably never will. I am the youngest of six and my mum and dad had just hit their 40’s when they had me. It’s funny but I had joked for years about there being hardly any baby pics of me. Of course reasons were given for this and no doubt valid reasons, did this fuel the fire? I was always being compared to my siblings, especially through school. “Your not like your brothers, or your sisters” I remember thinking then that ‘No! I’m not I am just like me’, was that why I wanted distance, I pushed for it? I used to be a member of a youth club years ago and played for the football team. I, for some reason, had told the youth club my name was Tony Breakspear, first named changed but not my surname, strange when thinking identity towards my own family, why not the surname surely that was the link?

My middle name is Ronald, My dad’s brother, therefore my uncle, god rest his beautiful soul, his name was Ronald. Uncle Rolly, who along with Auntie Avril, had three children Karen, Dean and Paul. Personally, I had always believed they had four children, Me!. I really did feel that strongly about it, of course it wasn’t true but I could never totally dismiss it. As you may be able to imagine, this left my mind in somewhat of a confused state, some will argue it still is. It left me with a feeling of not belonging anywhere, again!, even to this day. Things have taken place over the years that have estranged me even further, if that is the right word, and deepened my lack of identity. I, to a point, was able to deal with some of the issues with a psychiatrist and clinical psychologist, also in therapy and through counselling. You see no one knows me but me, they only knew what I wanted them to know; saw what reactions I had, read what was written and rumours. No one ever really asked or wanted to listen, so I kept most things to myself. I am not blaming no one, we were kids, and I carried the scars forward and maybe distanced myself already affecting the fractured relationships. This isn’t about blame it’s about feelings.

Karen, Dean and Paul had their own children, everyone grew up, live took over. Dean and Paul were my role models growing up, I had always had a feeling closer to those two than my own brothers, especially Paul. Paul, and his now ex-wife, the lovely Eileen, had four children of their own Stacey, Clare, Paul ‘Skid’ and Kirsty. If I saw them it was maybe three or four times over the years at weddings, funerals etc… Yet, as with Paul, I have always felt an attachment, don’t know why, again a feeling. The 24th January is a very sad day for this wonderful family, as in 2009 Paul ‘Skid’ Breakspear was sadly taken. I wanted to put up a post in Paul’s ‘Skid’ memory and used a photo from Clare, when it appeared in my album, it gave me a shock at its position and the way it looked at first as if Paul ‘Skid’ was siting next to me, see for yourself:

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I am at the top in a photo taken in 2003, with my sons, Taylor and Reece, then to our right is Paul. I felt compelled to send this to Clare, it turns out it was probably the best thing I have ever done in my life, because Clare does not know any of this story, in fact, save professionals, no one does it makes it even more special, Clare and myself were exchanging messages and I had two messages from Clare that have totally changed my life and I know feel as if I have an identity and belong. I will finish now and leave you with the two comments that have had such a profound affect on my life.

“u and my dad were like brothers, I’ve heard the stories, little shits”

“Well, dad thinks of u as his brother, so don’t u ever forget where you’re from, u are a true Breakspear and we all love you lots, keep the positive vibes cuz”

  RIP Paul ‘Skid’ Breakspear 

 17 – 4 – 1984   –   24 – 1 – 2009

  ‘P’

 

Say cheese!!!

#teamcharlie

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The rights of the prisoner to a ‘fresh start’ after a custodial sentence weighed against the rights of potential or actual victims to protection, dignity and safety, and the rights of the wider public to be protected from harmful prisoners upon release. The general principle is that public and victim protection should outweigh offender and prisoner rights, and  that this is justified on the basis of the ‘significant risk’ of serious harm posed. (Public Protection Manual, Risk of Harm, Version 4.0 January 2009, Ministry of Justice).

Charlie has never:

  • Raped anyone
  • Killed anyone
  • Molested anyone
  • Been a threat to the public

Charlie’s crimes have been on the inside in retaliation to the harsh treatment he has received.

He is not a risk to the public!!!

On the back of writing Justice!!! I received; private messages and emails from concerned readers about what they can do to help or assist, in any way, with the free Charles Salvador campaign. This has prompted me to highlight another unfair issue that is surrounding, not only Charlie, but one that is also affecting his lovely new bride Paula. I shall provide more details of how you can become involved and support this fight for justice. Regardless of what you may think you know about Charlie, there are three undeniable facts which nobody can twist.

He is a SON, he is a HUSBAND and he is a FATHER.

It’s been long enough now.

Forty four years and counting!!

I’d like you to just take a moment and pause to take a close look at this next pic:

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This picture is one of the first cages constructed at HMP Wakefield.

There was two of them, both have now been condemned as cells and are now being used as storerooms.

Charlie Salvador has spoken often of his time in one of those squalid cells and described it as horrific.

It is time to free Charles Salvador!!

So!, what can you do in order to redress some balance for Charlie and Paula.

Below are two ways you can support this righteous campaign.

My friends the prison is on a go slow at the moment so we wish to give them something to do, so I am asking you to write to the governor of Wakefield prison, in a polite and courteous manner, to ask him these three questions only please.

  1. Why did he go back on the arrangements of Charlie’s wedding, agreed by handshake?
  2. Why can’t Paula and Charlie’s mum have the wedding photos as promised?
  3. Why is Charlie on live calls when he has done nothing wrong?

Please get your friends to write and also to share.

The address is:

Dave Harding
Governing Governor
HMP Wakefield
5 Love Lane
Wakefield
West Yorkshire
WF2 9AG

Another way to support the campaign is to purchase official Charles Salvador merchandise for which I have included links to Ebay where you can find these and other excellent official merchandise.

 

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A copy of Charlie’s new book. A limited edition A.B.C colouring book, 52 (A4) pages. Complete with box of 12 non-toxic crayons. Order yours today from Ebay. Click here.

 

 

 

 

#teamcharlie

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A copy of Charlie’s new book, “Art Attack”. A limited 220 page edition of A4 art and photos plus comments from the artist that is Charles Salvador. Order yours from Ebay now. Click here.

 

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Justice?

#teamcharlie

Never piss on a scorpions nest!

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Regular readers of my blog will know that one of my missions in life is the fight for justice in our criminal justice system. Some argue whether justice exists, I believe it does, for there to be injustice, first there has to be justice. I wish to highlight what I personally feel is one of the biggest miscarriages of justice I have ever seen in my 38 years involvement in the criminal justice system. I shall be using the recent events, of the announcement to release the Black Cab Rapist, and comparing this case to the one of a certain Charlie Salvador (formerly Bronson). In November 2017 the parole board ruled that Charles Salvador, should not be released from HMP Wakefield or progress to a lower security category and continues to be held in a Close Supervision Centre. He must now wait another two years for a review of his case.

Through a friend I was able to ask Charlie if he would write a poem based on his interpretation of hope, with what Charlie has had to endure so far I would have thought he had hope in abundance, so here is Charlie’s poem on hope, the original is on the RH side.

 

 

So lets then look at the facts of these two individuals, I will not tell you what to think, you can make up your own minds as to which one of these two men should be released.

John Worboys  is a convicted sex offender, known as the Black Cab RapistWorboys was convicted in 2009 for attacks on 12 women. Police believe that he may have had more than one hundred victims, which would make him one of the Britain’s most prolific sex attackers. The first reports to police concerning suspicious incidents experienced by women in black cabs dated from 2002. Over a period of six-years, 14 women between 18 and 34 years of age, all in the professions, complained to the police of assault or other worrying experiences in a taxi, all of which had similarities. The police failed to link them.

Worboys was arrested for the sexual assault of a 19-year-old student in July 2007 and held at a police station in Plumstead, southeast London, but was released on bail after police believed his protests that she had been drunk and kissed him as she left his cab, which was confirmed by CCTV footage.  In December 2007, a 26-year-old woman made a complaint about a cab driver who drugged and raped her, but a DNA match was not matched to Worboys. In January 2008, a 29-year-old insurance broker made a similar report to Essex police. In February 2008, Worboys raped a lawyer in his cab, who reported this to the police. These three reports convinced police that they were dealing with a serial rapist and they made a public appeal. A member of staff at a sexual referral unit remembered the 2007 case and Worboys was arrested at his house in Rotherhithe.

Worboys was convicted at Croydon Crown Court on 13 March 2009 of one count of rape, five sexual assaults, one attempted assault and 12 drugging charges, committed from July 2007 to February 2008. He was cleared of two counts of drugging. He was sent for a pre-sentencing report and a psychiatric report, and was sentenced on 21 April. He received an indeterminate sentence requiring he serve at least 8 years. Mr Justice Penry-Davey said he would not be released until the parole board decided he no longer presented a threat to women. The judge instructed that Worboys should be banned from driving a passenger vehicle for profit. He is expected to be released at the end of this month after serving nine years and nine months for drugging and sexually assaulting 12 women, including raping one of them. Police suspect he may have attacked more than 100 more women in total, using his black taxi to pick up victims before drugging them with laced champagne. Victims have said they are living in fear that Worboys may approach them, and several of them have said they want the 60-year-old banned from entering the Greater London area, partly because when he was arrested the police retrieved his address book containing many of the victims’ details.

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I feel that the establishment are treating Charlie in an unjust way. He is being punished continuously for fighting against the unfair treatment he has received over the years. Yes! it cannot be denied that Charlie didn’t do himself any favours in relation to his conduct over the years, however, one ethos of prison is to encourage change in the individual, Charlie has met his side of the bargain and has changed, and in the most harshest of conditions. Charlie is the only one on the unit that has taken part in and completed the violence reduction course, the only acknowledged course available to Charlie , prison is all about give and take, Charlie took and has been giving back for years. In fact, was you aware that, for the last two decades Charlie has been providing charities, up and down the country and for a variety of causes, with his work so that they can auction them off raising much-needed funds, the amounts raised so far are in the hundreds of thousand £’s.

It is my personal opinion, that in the case of Charles Salvador, this government and the so-called independent Parole Board are guilty of misfeasance. Charles Salvador has served his time and has more than repaid his debt to society, yet the man they release is John Worboys. Who would you rather have walking the streets. I know that Charlie Salvador would be my choice, if you feel the same way as I do, then you, like me, also have a social obligation to do something about it.

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Tears of a Child!!!!!!

I have asked my daughter, Kirsty, for permission to write this blog, as it is about her plight recently. At two o’clock the other morning a drunken ex of Kirsty’s was trying to break in to my daughter’s flat to cause her harm, some 200 miles away, of course the police were called and he left the scene, since then my daughter, who is 26 and mother to my two granddaughters who are 7 & 1, has received threatening phone calls and Facebook messages. Kirsty had an appointment today, with the police, to discuss the situation as she is extremely frightened, only to be told that no one is available to speak with her and can she come back Thursday. If that is how domestic violence victims are treated is it any wonder deaths are not rare, even when the perpetrator is known to police. That may sound dramatic or it doesn’t seem much, however please withhold judgement until you have read this all. Then see what your views are.

As you are aware I went back to prison to sort my life out and one thing I was desperate to repair was the relationship with my children. The day I landed back in jail I instantly set about writing letters to them all, this was July 2015. In November of that year I received my first letter from one of my children, it was Kirsty, and as I have kept my letters I am able to quote verbatim, as I wish to share the story with you. This is the opening paragraph:

Alright dad

I know I’ve taken my time and I thought I wouldn’t be able to forgive or forget what either of  us had said. Then something bad happened and I cried more for you than I did about the pain I was in. I just wanted you to save me dad and just hold me and tell me everything will be OK. So I should really tell you what’s happened but I don’t want you to get angry.

Kirsty then went on to tell me how she became involved with this guy called Michael since August, he had two kids and they were all getting on really well, things couldn’t have been better Kirsty wrote herself. Then for his birthday he had invited a few mates round for a drink which was a nice evening, Kirsty goes on to say:

Then bang!! out of nowhere Michael starts shouting……his mates leave, the kids are in bed…..he came in and just started slapping me both sides of my face…….then held my head and head butted me twice……..then fucking hell did he punch me, I dropped to the floor and he carried on hitting me.

Kirsty managed to get out and two friends were there that stopped it go any further, he was eventually arrested and charged with assault by beating, Kirsty, however, was left with a suspected broken cheek bone and had to go to hospital for x-rays as he had damaged one of her retinas which later had to be operated on. He received a fine and 150 hours community service. This wasn’t to be the last time either, he had barged his way into Kirsty’s flat after he had finished his sentence, smashed her phone and knocked her about, charge? once again assault by beating, sentence? yeah, fine and 150 hours community service again, oh! sorry and a restraining order this time. Three days after that finished the emotional abuse started again and continues to this day up to and including last weekend.

“No one available, come back Thursday”.

Let’s hope so!!!!!!!!!!!!

I would like to share some other quotes from Kirsty should any fathers be reading this unsure what path to take.

Christmas 2015

I miss you so much dad. You’re my best friend, my rock. Life is so hard without you here.

New Years Day 2016

Really need a cuddle dad, you always just fix everything for me. So true that girls always need their dads.

January 2016

I love and miss you dad, you’re the only one that gets me. I wrote two poems for you:

No matter how old a girl is she will always need her dad,

In times of joy, laughter, pain and being sad.

He is her hero, best friend and her king,

Memories filled with laughter and joking.

Two peas in a pod, me and my dad,

Caring and welcoming but just a tad mad.

To have him here now, words cannot explain,

The feeling of happiness and the safety again.

Wrong place, wrong time always seems to be us,

People don’t like us because our bond they cannot suss.

My dad is my king, my first love, no one will come close to him,

He is my protector, I’m his blood, so it runs within.

Not long now, dad and me as one team,

Mother fuckers watch out we are titanium.

Expression through tears

Crying really is a gift of life I cannot live without.

It’s the most raw and real action that shows what you are about.

You can cry from happiness, such a lovely feeling.

You can also cry from sadness, now that’s just depressing.

Expression infinite, each individual tear.

Some of them I have even shed to express my fear.

Confusion is a strange one to that I must admit.

As for when I cry I panic, I don’t like that one bit.

But here is an open invitation to come cry with me.

As it truly is a beautiful way to let your emotions be free.

Tears of a child!!!!

 

 

 

Yet to be written!! (thanks Grace)

 

Onwards and upwards though, I am giving myself this weekend to wallow in whatever self pitying bullshit I can possibly muster, then tomorrow the battle shall commence once again.

Above is the last paragraph I wrote in my previous blog Silent fight, The day battle commenced was Monday 20th, two days ago. It is incredible what a change of mindset actually produces, of course I have no chance of proving that things still would have happened were I still in a negative frame of mind, however, I can’t disprove it wasn’t due to my positive attitude. On the Monday I had a wonderful conversation with the professor of literature, creative writing and drama at the University of East Anglia in regards to my upcoming invitation to be guest speaker at a seminar at the university on the 28th of this month.

Then on Tuesday I had a fantastic conversation with someone in respect of setting my own company, called DRB support, and creating my own mobile phone network. We are also hoping, in January, to be providing six prisoners, being released from prison, a smart phone and a prepaid sim card, the sim card will be free of charge for six months, this will give them unlimited calls and texts along with 5GB data. I am hoping it will keep them connected and stop them reoffending, there is a lot more to it but those are the basics. DRB support has been one of my goals and it now has a real future rather than being on paper.

Then today, wow what an incredible day. I had a meeting with a headmaster (John). John is head of a school for kids with behavioural issues, and I have to say on what I saw today, that they John and his staff do an amazing job. I have created a workshop that I am hoping will put kids off of going down the wrong way. It’s as if today was always going to happen at some stage if I kept pushing. I now have an opportunity to be the influence that inspires kids to take the right path in life, or even be prepared for the wrong path if that is what they choose but I am sure it won’t come to that. I am so excited at this opportunity. I have never forgotten my life at that age, nor have I forgotten what it’s like to be a child, something I feel a lot of adults are guilty of.

You never know when life can turn, it’s being ready for the opportunity that leads to achieving it.

Silent fight

Therefore can someone please explain to me why I am on the floor

It’s been quite a rough time lately, hence why not blogged for a while. I have so much going on in my life that is good I almost feel guilty. I am actually in danger of being in receipt of everything that I have been working towards and yet this is my lowest point since being released from prison. Mental health is a funny thing, there you are rolling along nicely with no problems, well none that can’t be overcome easily, and bang back on the floor. I also hate talking to people about it, I feel as if I’m demanding attention and therefore keep most things to myself. However, I am getting better at sharing, yet again though in doing so it makes me feel vulnerable and I end up shutting myself off.

I believe this latest episode stems from an assessment I had recently regarding my mental health, it opened up old wounds, which is my argument here, it seems whenever I access services I find myself having to go over the reasons for my mental health, which I understand is needed but doesn’t do any good for my mental health, you have to go over things in detail so many times it’s impossible for it not to leave you jaded. Then the reviews just stop, leaving you in limbo. I am fortunate that I have an incredible support team behind me (thank you Grace and Donna). It feels me with dread wondering in what state I would be in without this support, yet there are thousands out there fighting the system by themselves with no support.

I have some amazing things coming up in relation to my journey, I am due to speak as guest speaker on prison related issues at a University, I have a meeting booked with a headmaster at a local school in the hope to create a workshop for schools relating to prison and parents in prison. DRB support, my own company I wish to create, is coming to fruition with some exciting developments, I am even in talks to set up my own mobile phone network. The mobile phone app that I have been working on is very close to getting to market. So much more as well that I am yet unable to confirm. Therefore can someone please explain to me why I am on the floor. It doesn’t make sense, but then mental health doesn’t make sense.

Onwards and upwards though, I am giving myself this weekend to wallow in whatever self pitying bullshit I can possibly muster, then tomorrow the battle shall commence once again.