Eric Clapton's tortured life and what really happened when his four-year-old son fell 53 floors to his death through an open window
A new book, Slowhand: The Life And Music Of Eric Clapton, by Philip Norman, is published by Weidenfeld & Nicolson on November 6, and explains the legend's tortured life and what really happened when hisÂ four-year-old son fell 53 floors to his death through an open window.
Here we take a look back at an article written by Eric's daughter Ruth, who herself still lives in Doncaster.
Ruth Clapton-Bartlett inherited her famous father’s love for music but is kept busy currently with her young family in Bessacarr, where she and her husband chose to make their home.
I was born here in Doncaster, as was my husband, and our two sons! However, I lived in the Caribbean on an island called Montserrat until I was eight. When I came back here I found it to be extremely welcoming and friendly. I have been here ever since really with a few stints in London, New York, and Sheffield, but I seem to always gravitate back to Doncaster. There are so many great things about this town but I’d say one of my highlights is the racecourse: I love going with my husband and we plan to take the kids soon too. It’s a lovely day out and such a strong part of our history as a town.
Having Eric Clapton as my father has impacted my life massively, sometimes in a positive way and sometimes in a negative way.
I try to look at the positives, so he has given me a great musical education for sure, but he has also taught me to overcome pain and adversity.
He has visited me here in Doncaster lots of times, more often when I was younger to watch my school plays etc., but nowadays to visit his grandsons, Isaac who is four, and Theodore who is one.
My job now is a stay at home mummy to my boys and initially I panicked about doing that here, because as a teenager I just felt like there wasn’t much to do. I think I was just in my unappreciative, teenage phase.
Becoming a parent has absolutely opened up my eyes to the incredible facilities we have here if you’re raising children, we have such lovely parks. The lakeside area is a wonderful place to go for a family walk.
We have such fantastic groups set up for new mums too so that they meet people in the same situation and don’t feel lonely because sometimes it can feel lonely being a stay at home parent.
I love being a mummy, it’s brilliant! Hard work but fulfilling and challenging which is what I love about it. My boys are my world and I love how they’ve changed my life for ever....so proud of them both.
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I feel a little bit guilty that I’m not part of any groups in our community but it’s something that I’m looking towards in the near future when I have a little more freedom and time.
Isaac starts school in September and I would love to maybe become a breastfeeding support worker. I nursed both my boys and Theodore was born with tongue tie so I have a lot of experience and knowledge that I’d love to pass on. I do love to help people.....it gives me so much joy. So come September that will be my goal.
I love my husband being around at weekends so he can help me out in getting our boys out of the house and on trips out. We have Yorkshire Wildlife Park passes and that’s probably our favourite family day out at the moment! Such a great place to visit and it’s always working to improve which I think is inspiring.
Our favourite place to eat is a tough one because we’ve had a few places open up near to where I live.
I do like The Counting House in Bessacarr as it’s good food and it’s nearby so we can walk there, which is always a bonus. If it was for a special occasion or a date night though I’d have to say The Old Weighing Rooms at Doncaster Racecourse.
I love the flapjack at Walkers Garden Centre in Branton. It’s out of this world good! Worth all the calories and if I’m ever out that way I can’t help but call in for some. I usually scoff one piece before I get back to the car.
I don’t have a lot of spare time at the moment, but when I do have some time I love to upscale furniture, I love to garden, I absolutely love fashion so shopping is definitely up there too! Walking, love to go on a family walk into the countryside. I love music and films and so does my husband so we do movie nights in this house!
I sing and I write lyrics from time to time, I miss my music too much actually and I’m always tempted to go back to it and I think I will once my kids are a little more independent.
I couldn’t possibly say what’s my favourite kind of music, I have so many different tastes! There’s just so much to choose from which is great isn’t it.
My favourite book of all time has to be Pillars Of The Earth by Ken Follett, but I am an absolutely huge Harry Potter fan too! My favourite film of all time is It’s A Wonderful Life.....it’s such an uplifting film and it shows you how even if you think you don’t make a difference in this world, you do to the people who love you.
* Slowhand: The Life And Music Of Eric Clapton, by Philip Norman, is published by Weidenfeld & Nicolson on November 6, priced £25. Offer price £20 (20 per cent discount, with free p&p) until November 4. Pre-order at mailshop.co.uk/books or call 0844 571 0640. Spend £30 on books and get free premium delivery.