Authors: Lynda Page
Copyright Â© 2014 Lynda Page
The right of Lynda Page to be identified as the Author of the Work has been asserted by her in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988.
Apart from any use permitted under UK copyright law, this publication may only be reproduced, stored, or transmitted, in any form, or by any means, with prior permission in writing of the publishers or, in the case of reprographic production, in accordance with the terms of licences issued by the Copyright Licensing Agency.
First published as an Ebook in 2014 by
Headline Publishing Group
All characters in this publication are fictitious and any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
Cataloguing in Publication Data is available from the British Library
eISBN: 978 0 7553 9847 8
HEADLINE PUBLISHING GROUP
An Hachette UK Company
338 Euston Road
London NW1 3BH
Table of Contents
Lynda Page was born and brought up in Leicester. The eldest of four daughters, she left home at seventeen and has had a wide variety of office jobs. She now lives on her daughter's holiday park in North Lincolnshire.
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And One For Luck
Just By Chance
At The Toss Of A Sixpence
Any Old Iron
Now Or Never
In For A Penny
All Or Nothing
A Cut Above
Out With The Old
Against The Odds
No Going Back
Whatever It Takes
A Lucky Break
For What It's Worth
Onwards And Upwards
The Sooner The Better
A Mother's Sin
Time For A Change
No Way Out
Secrets To Keep
A Bitter Legacy
The Price To Pay
A Perfect Christmas
The Time Of Our Lives
Where Memories Are Made
Jolly's campers are guaranteed to have a holiday to remember, but that's not always easy to achieve thanks to the array of colourful characters who pour through Jolly's gates.
Jackie Sims works in the general office and her ambition is one day to be in charge. But she never wanted her lucky break to come about through such tragic circumstances â¦ While Drina Jolly goes away to help her family come to terms with their grief, she puts her faith in Jackie to keep the business running smoothly and Jackie is determined she will do whatever it takes not to let her down.
Despite her resilience and resourcefulness, Jackie can't run the camp on her own and the abrupt, unapproachable temporary camp manager, Harold Rose, seems unwilling to help her. But she has an ally in fun-loving, red-headed receptionist Ginger Williams whose support she will need to help her through the turmoil, chaos and heartbreak that is about to come her way.
Following on from
The Time of our Lives
, Lynda Page's nostalgic saga of fun, frolics and mayhem at a seaside holiday camp is sure to delight anyone who has ever enjoyed an English holiday beside the sea.
For my precious daughter Lynsey Ann Page â
No words are strong enough to express my deep love for you, my admiration for your achievements, my respect for you. Without you by my side I would never have survived the things that life has thrown at us. I could never have wished for a better daughter than you.
All my love as always
ard rain lashed down from an angry black sky, stinging the faces and soaking through the clothes of the three people gathered at the base of the ferris wheel in Jolly's Holiday Camp.
Shouting to be heard over the scream of the gale-force wind blasting in over a furious sea, fighting to keep herself upright, Rhonnie Buckland grabbed her husband's arm and shook it frenziedly. âDan, please wait for the Fire Brigade! They said they'd be here as quickly as they could. They shouldn't be long now.'
Dan shook his head, not by way of an answer but in an effort to clear his face of the streams of water running down it. âListen, love, there's no telling when they'll get here. This storm is bound to have blown a few trees down or else the brigade received a more serious call out after they got ours. That poor woman and child up there will be terrified. All I'm going to do is climb up and assure them we're doing everything we can to get them back down safely.'
Blind panic filled Rhonnie. âPlease, Dan, no. To climb up there in this weather â¦ it's sheer madness. I know you mean well, but I couldn't bear it if something happened to you â¦ especially not now,' she emphasised meaningfully.
He pulled her to him, hugging her tightly. âYou know there's nothing more important to me than my family â and now more than ever. I've climbed up the wheel more times than I've had hot dinners, my darlin', know every rivet and bolt better than the back of my hand. I'll be fine.'
Another voice cried out, âThis is all my fault! I should be the one to go up â¦'
Dan cut in resolutely, âThis isn't your fault, Adam. You didn't know that belt was going to snap. Even I couldn't have foreseen it. I checked the wheel thoroughly myself only the day before yesterday and it looked as sound as a bell then.'
âYes, but if I hadn't let the little girl persuade me to give them another go round as it was the last night of their holiday, they'd be safely down now. You'd sent word that a storm was coming and for us to close the fair early and get the campers back up top â¦'
Dan interjected again. âNot even the weather station realised how quickly the gale would reach shore or how bad it'd be, Adam. When all's said and done, you were doing what we all try to do at Jolly's, and that's giving our visitors a holiday to remember.' He glanced up, his face wreathed in worry. Although the wheel was lit with an array of colourful bulbs he was unable to see the topmost seat that held the stranded campers. The wind was driving the rain into shifting veils. âThat little girl won't forget this holiday in a hurry. Nor her mother neither,' he said grimly.
Despite feeling duty bound to help the campers until they were rescued, the welfare of his beloved wife was the most important thing to Dan. âRhonnie, there's nothing you can do here so why don't you go and join the rest of the campers and staff undercover?' he urged. âYou're soaked to the skin and I'm worried you'll catch something nasty if you stay out in this weather much longer. And you'll need to update Drina and Artie â¦'
She cut in, âWhen I leave here it'll be with you by my side. Until then, I stay.'
He knew there was no point in arguing the toss with her. He wouldn't be able to rest either if it was Rhonnie about to attempt such a dangerous act.
She urged him, âAs soon as the brigade arrive you'll come back down and leave them to it, won't you? Promise me, Dan?'
Cupping her wet face in his hands, he kissed her and replied, âI promise.' Then added softly, âI love you.'
She replied without hesitation, âI love you too.'
Rhonnie watched Dan step over to the side of the wheel and begin to climb up the spars of one of the two towering metal towers that held the eighty-foot wheel between them. She wasn't religious but nevertheless said a silent prayer now for his safe return along with the two stranded campers. She felt a presence by her side and turned her head to see that Adam had joined her, his eyes fixed on Dan, obviously as worried as she was. To make him feel useful she ordered him back to the main entrance to the camp, telling him to wait by the gate to give the fire crew directions once they arrived.
Dan was a quarter of the way up the tower by now and she saw him place his foot on the next metal spar, ready to haul himself up, when it slipped and left him clinging to the framework to either side while he firmed his foot hold again. She gasped in horror and screamed, âDan, for God's sake, be careful!' Her plea was carried away on the wind. Suddenly the funfair was plunged into darkness as all the lights went out. The storm had taken down power lines. What had already been a dire situation had taken a turn for the worse. Dan had no light whatsoever to guide him up the tower and she had completely lost sight of him so had no idea how he was faring.
Unexpectedly something touched her arm and she jumped in alarm, spinning round to see her father, Artie Fleming, shining a torch at her.
âOh, Dad, Dan's climbing up the wheel to reassure two campers â a mother and her daughter â until the Fire Brigade arrives. I begged him to wait until they got here but he wouldn't listen.'
Artie immediately shone the beam of his torch upwards, fanning it around, trying to locate Dan's whereabouts, but the torrential rain and ferocious wind were too much for the wavering beam.
Artie greatly admired Dan's compassionate nature but inwardly damned it now for making him immune to Rhonnie's distress. He shouted reassuringly, âDan'll be fine, love, stop worrying. He'll be back down before you know it, wanting you to tell him what you're cooking for his dinner.' Artie only wished he felt as confident as he sounded.
Forty feet up in the air, Dan's strength was beginning to ebb. He flattened himself against the metal frame while he paused for breath. He knew he still had a way to go before he reached the top. Several times, as the wind and rain blasted him so hard he'd feared he would be blown to certain death, he'd wished he'd listened to Rhonnie and waited. But he had a responsibility to the two terrified campers above, and so Dan kept going.
It seemed an eternity to him before he finally reached the top of the tower. He was mortally relieved to find that the cab holding the stranded campers had come to its abrupt halt as it travelled past the support tower, which meant he'd be relieved of the task of working his way around the actual wheel to locate it. The wind seemed to be far more turbulent up here and was violently swinging all the cabs backwards and forwards. The two people he'd come to reassure were visibly terrified, both clinging to the flimsy metal safety bar in front of them for dear life, their frantic screams carried away on the wind.