Deaf blind author’s second book fundraiser

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A Wetherby man who lost most of his sight and hearing to inflammation in his head has published his second book.

Paul Duffin, 64, of Ullswater Rise, published And The Cricket Was Good Too on Amazon last week and is hoping to raise over £1,000 for deaf blind charity Sense.

“The new book is a light hearted and amusing account of my nine cricket tours following the England cricket team around the world until my sight and hearing problems made it too difficult to continue,” said Paul.

“It is not just about Test cricket. Most of the tales are about the people on tour and the places visited as I travelled to nine different countries, 13 Test grounds and saw 14 Test matches.”

Paul, whose condition forced him to retire in 2002 from his job as general manager of mortgage and saving for a leading bank, published his first book - Not To Bad - a year ago and has raised £1,000 for Guidedogs.

Paul’s sight problems started in 2002 when he lost virtually all the sight in his left eye, leaving him relying on his right eye that was damaged by the late diagnosis of a squint as a child.

Due to continued inflammation both his sight and hearing have continued to deteriorate and he is now classed as severely sight and hearing impaired and having to adapt his life.

“Despite my condition I can still write with the aid of a computer and with the help of great friends who correct all my errors of which there are many,” added Paul.

“I was delighted with the response to Not Too Bad, which was based on the diaries I kept as a teenager growing up in Birmingham.

“And the Cricket Was Good Too!” is similar in style but the content is far more varied. Hopefully an enjoyable read for everyone while raising money for an excellent cause.”

The book is available in paperback and Kindle from Amazon. All royalties will be donated to Sense.

Paul added: “I remember one consultant telling me to prepare for a new way of life. I did, and am still doing so.

“As my hearing deteriorated the cinema and theatre were no longer visited. I used to enjoy the radio but this is now impossible and I have not heard any music for some time.

“Conversation is limited to one to one away from noisy environments and also excludes the use of the telephone. Group situations are a real trial and are mostly avoided.

“I particularly regret not being able to explain to my young grandson why I cannot understand what he is saying to me.”

Paul, who turned to writing in 2015, added: “This all sounds terrible but remarkably, the human spirit is extremely robust and I still feel alive and able to contribute. Adapt and survive is therefore my motto.

“I can still be taken to enjoy cricket, albeit with the aid of a powerful pair of binoculars. I can also still write with the aid of my large Apple Mac computer.”

He thanked his assistants, family and friends for their help.