David and I talked over the phone and decided that the book was now finished. His health was deteriorating it was clear and Rachael was determined to get the thing printed, delivered and in his hands before he died.

I rang him back. "You've said nothing about Brighton. The book sort of shudders to a halt. What about a rounding off, with some explanation why you are living here and why you love it."

The resultant 'Vale' proved to be a characteristic interweaving of the elgaic and the saucy. It was the obvious text to be read out at his funeral. Even now I read it and weep, because his voice rings out so clearly. You can hear his laughter and even register his usual darting glance to see how you responded.

David was so much part of my life - our lives. I am helping Rachael with our website into which much material not encountered in the two volumes of autobiography will be found (see above). It is a way of coming to terms with a seemingly permanent sense of loss that has not diminished since his death in February 2008.

As one of several people who helped to see him through in the last months (Rachael, Barry, Rachael's David) I have been urged by someone who should have known better to 'move on'. Odd thing to ask of an historian, I thought as I tried to smile affably. Grief may be something we can't overcome, but we can try to understand it.

In the period after his death the edition was selling sporadically, or presented to the devotee. Last reports suggest the residue has been pulped at the dispersal of the Estate.