This is a frank and entertaining account which describes the Oxford life of a remarkable woman and is sure to interest anyone who has connections with this great city. Florence Wood was born Agnes Florence Kirby in 1901 on the outskirks of Oxford and the story of her life also gives a unique insight into the history of the city. The author's eloquent description of her childhood is sure to strike a chord with older readers, while younger generations are given a fascinating glimpse of everyday life as it was for their grandparents and great grantparents. At the turn of the century the gentry still held sway over the lives of those who lived in the country: girls still went into service in the `big house'; schools taught the three Rs; the Church was the centre of the community; and the treatment for illness could only be afforded by the well-to-do. By the end of the twentieth century almost every aspect of people's lives had changed, during what was a period of immense change and development.
Florence Wood's own world changed fundamentally in 1916 when, at the age of only fifteen, she joined the Royal Flying Corps, and the dedication and commitment she showed while serving her country was to be equally evident in the service she gave to the city of Oxford. She loved the place of her birth and sought to be as involved as she could be in its government and in the care of its inhabitants, earning herself a British Empire Medal in 1977. She approached each new challenge with determination and was never fazed by the pace of change.