Victor canning – Biography
Victor Canning was born on 16th June 1911, in Plymouth, Devon, the eldest child
of Fred Canning, and his wife Mabel, née Gold. The address of the family
according to the 1911 census which took place just before Victor's birth was 6 Row
den Street, Peverell, Plymouth, and his father's profession was given as "taxidriver", though elsewhere he described himself as "coach-builder". During WW1
his father served as an ambulance driver in France and Flanders, while Victor with
his two sisters went to live in the village of Cal stock ten miles north of Plymouth,
where his uncle Cecil Goold worked for the railways and later became station
master. After the war the family returned to Plymouth. In the mid 1920s they
moved to Oxford where his father had found work, and Victor attended the Oxford
Central School. Here he was encouraged to stay on at school and go to university
by a classical scholar, Dr. Bernard Henderson, who promised to get Victor a place
at Oxford University, but the family could not afford it and instead he went to work
as a clerk in the education office at age 16, first in Oxford, later in Weston-superMare.
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