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Charlie was born in 1925 with a hearing impairment. He was not diagnosed until he was 5 years old and then he was sent to a local deaf school in Birmingham.

Charlie was married with 3 children, 2 of whom are deaf. His wife has passed away and he still lives at home with one of his sons.

Charlie retired at the age of 65 after working with the Morris car company for 34 and half years.

Charlie's story:
Since I was a little boy, I was aware of BID Services and the Birmingham deaf community. It was the place to go for deaf people to find out more about benefits, jobs, socialise and get involved with sports including competitions with other local deaf clubs all over the UK.

When I was still working, I came here every Wednesday evening and usually all day on a Saturday. Two of my children are deaf so it was good to bring them here too so that once they left school, they knew where to go especially if they needed help.

I always knew about the social club for older people so once I retired, I started to come every week. I have been coming now for more than 20 years. Although I am now 90 years old, I still try to come every week. I am not able to do a lot now that I am much older, so it's important for me to come here as it keeps me going. It's always nice to catch up with everyone, especially your friends that you have known since school.

I like to stay at the centre throughout the cold weather especially in winter but it's lovely to go out too. We go on day trips through the year, including visits to other local deaf clubs in other regions.

I also like the parties throughout the year, especially at Christmas when everyone gets together. I also go to Deaf Church at BID every Wednesday which is really good.