Martha grew up in Cambridge, where her father was researching into Jean-Jacques Rousseau at Trinity College. Her mother was a concert pianist who also taught at the French Lycée in London. Martha passed A-Levels in English, French and German and then went to York University where she gained a degree in English Literature in 1976. Shortly before taking her finals, she had a ‘Road to Damascus’ moment which completely changed the direction of her life, compelling her to train as a doctor. She qualified at Guy’s Hospital, London in 1983, moving to East London, where she worked as a GP in Wapping for about thirty years. This was an extremely diverse and fascinating part of London which was in the process of redevelopment after the closure of the docks. Martha was a GP trainer and teacher of medical students and contributed in 2008 to the publication, General Practice, Clinical Cases Uncovered. She also wrote an oral history of Wapping, ‘Couldn’t Afford the Eels’ Memories of Wapping 1900-1960’ based on interviews with people who had grown up in the locality. Martha retired in 2016 but is planning to return to work to help the NHS give vaccinations against Covid 19.
Martha has inherited her mother’s piano. She started playing when she was six and is still loving it. While she was in her mid-fifties, she decided to take up the bassoon and enjoys playing in amateur chamber groups and orchestras. She lives with her husband, Huw, in London's Stoke Newington. Huw makes harpsichords and clavichords.
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