Jill's Walk of Life: 60 Years of Campaigning
Front Cover
Jill Allen-King OBE

Foreword by:
Lord David Blunkett


Brief Description: In this follow up to her autobiography, Just Jill, the author brings us up to date with her life, including the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on her and her partially sighted husband, Alvin, who was required to shield, effectively cutting off the couple’s support system of sighted helpers.
After completely losing her sight at the age of twenty-four, Jill Allen-King has spent the past sixty years fighting for equal rights and improved access and conditions for blind and disabled individuals. She is a veteran of over 100 campaigns, many ongoing. Much of her work has had a far-reaching impact, making everyday life easier for blind and partially sighted people across the globe. In this remarkable book, Jill details some of the campaigns and committees she has been involved with through the years. From improving access for guide dogs to the idea of tactile paving for crossings and railway platforms, Jill has helped to bring about significant change for blind and disabled people.
The story of how she overcame adversity, after being housebound for seven years when she first lost her sight, to receive an MBE, and later OBE, in recognition of her achievements, is one of courage and determination. Jill’s Walk of Life is an inspirational book that details the huge contribution Jill has made in addressing many of the issues facing those living with disability. This is a moving account of one woman’s determination to turn adversity into triumph that will encourage others in their own fight for independence and reform.

About the Author: Jill Allen-King OBE was born in Southend, in 1940, during the Second World War. In spite of being partially sighted, she enjoyed a fairly normal childhood. As a young adult, she gained a catering qualification and worked as a cook.
On losing her sight completely, at the age of twenty-four, Jill embarked on a journey of readjustment and learning, eventually regaining her confidence and independence. She has never allowed the fact that she is blind to hold her back, and has dedicated her life to voluntary work, campaigning tirelessly to improve facilities for blind and disabled people, both at a local and international level. Jill was instrumental in the introduction of tactile paving at crossings and railways to help blind and partially sighted people identify the end of the pavement or platform.
Over the years, Jill has served on many committees and has been involved in numerous campaigns. She was previously Public Relations Officer for the National Federation of the Blind and, for several years, chaired the European Blind Union Commission on Mobility and Transport (now closed). She has been Patron of Trust Links Southend since 2011.
Now in her eighties, with her seventh guide dog, Jagger, Jill shows no sign of slowing down. She is a member of the committee of Southend Area Bus User Group (SABUG) and Southend and District Pensioners Campaign as well as being on the C2C Rail Passenger panel. She was awarded the MBE in 1983 and the OBE in 2011.
Jill lives in Essex with her second husband, Alvin, who is partially sighted. She has one daughter, Jacqueline, and two grandchildren, Joseph and Emily. Other books include Jill's autobiography ‘Just Jill’ (published in 2010) and ‘Jill's Leading Ladies’ (published in 2012).

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Publication Date:1 November 2023
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Page Extent:126
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Publication Date:1 November 2023
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