David and Charlie. Image: Sarah Lee for the Guardian
I rose on to the scene when Charlie was two. My ex-wife and I had been separated and on the road to divorce I had been extended for four years. I was then 46[ he is now 70 ].
I adored Polly and I also loved her little son. He was incredible. He liked me at first, but when he realised that it was getting serious, he had a little change of heart. He was used to having only his mum and me being there, well, he did a unclean affirm formerly and said that I smelled, occasions like that.
It wasnt bad at all. He was scrupulous hes still carefully considered. He doesnt give himself away to parties, inexpensively or gently. He would ever be very cautious of beings. But then Polly and I are like that, too. Were not over-approachable and dont change into love with both feet. Were distrustful and take our time.
Polly was quite ill at the beginning. She had glandular fever and was feeble and was never that great at getting up in the mornings. I was an early bird ever happy to get up, ever happy to make breakfast and nothing a kid could do could faze me. Id already had four. He was Pollys first but I was a skilled parent, you are familiar with. So I would be getting up, taking Charlie to school in Highgate when he was two before we even moved in together.
After Charlie was around, and before Polly and I had offsprings, I did another Pink Floyd tour for six months or so in 1994. Then I made an album. Polly was residence with Charlie but[ my work commitment] wasnt as ruthless it was work in a studio in England, going home at six or seven at night, much more civilised. So the work is compatible with their own families thing.
I love being a dad. Its full of resentments and aggravations and nonsense, but the great minutes are just so great. They are lovely. “Theres” those instants, and ought to have with all of my children.
We guessed I should adopt Charlie as soon as possible. I thought the probabilities were that Polly and I would have infants together and that I should go on and accept him to give him firmly in the whole thing.
There was some trouble with the older siblings and there was sometimes a little bit of ganging up on Charlie.
I have been asked whether they made an example of Charlie[ going to prison] because he had a stone hotshot father. The reality of the matter is that his first glory was a image on the front sheet of a newspaper with the issue, Who is this daughter?
Because the picture of him swinging on the Cenotaph, with his long hair acquired them think he was a girl. So the first time it strike the newspapers, it wasnt are attached to me. But, of course, as soon as it became know that it wasnt a girl and “its been” Charlie and he was my son and everything, you know
Ive been bonded to Charlie as his daddy since he was three, so it was appalling and we were incensed with the unfairnes of it. We were very concerned about his aid. Pollys evocative imagination led her to being convinced that ghastly acts were bound to happen and my role was to convince her that “theyre not” going to happen and that they were very, very unlikely to happen. So I had to dig into my compartmentalisation skills and contend to myself that there was no threats to him and that everything was fine, and to try to keep our family sanity together.
Actually, I wasnt amazed when Charlie told me he was going back into Wandsworth prison to see the Liberty Choir. Nothing surprises me in that method about him because hes a human being of amazing empathy. Hes a really good person. It is a very courageous thought to do but then hes a defy person.
Polly and I were both intrigued, where reference is told us about it subsequentlies, and we thought wed must be followed to ascertain what it was like so we came to see its present session with the big choir in the school and then into the prison choir, and met it amazing.
What is clear is that Charlie has tried to do something good with his experience.
David Gilmour is the new patron of the Liberty Choir, which was founded by MJ Paranzino and Ginny Dougary, and launched in Wandsworth prison, south London, in 2014. If “youre willing to” donating, helping to reduce reoffending and offering prisoners a lifeline, catch out more at libertychoir.org