My great-grandfather, Joe Pottok, was quite a character. As a tailor, he put his sewing skills to good use. They were clever little features – a secret pocket here; a clever seam there. He liked to entertain my dad with magic tricks he learned from a travelling circus that used to visit where the family lived in Poland. Even just before he died, he started to write short stories – in my photograph I’m reading some – two of which were broadcast on a local London radio station.