I was brought up in a small town on the west coast of Scotland. In 1966, at the age of 11, I enjoyed a fairly normal if strict childhood. The usual punishment was loss of freedom, with spanking, or smacking as it was known, reserved as the ultimate sanction.

There were about four occasions on which I was spanked. This story is about the most memorable.

That day I had done something wrong and so I was told that I wasn’t allowed out. This was terrible as I knew my friend, let’s calls him Bill, was going to call. I waited upstairs, watching from my window, to try and meet him before he pressed the front door bell, thereby alerting my parents, who would have told him to come back tomorrow.

Sure enough, I spotted Bill wandering down the street. The time was around 7.45. Normally, I would have been allowed out until 9.00. I rushed down, stopped Bill ringing the doorbell and before I could explain Bill showed me a half-crown (about 12.5 pence Sterling) which he had been given by his gran.

His plan was to go to the local cafe and there buy two (one each!) ice cream floats which was a frothy combination of ice cream and Coca-Cola. I then explained that I was not allowed out. Bill said this was not a problem as we would be back before it was noticed that I had gone.

On my return, at around 9.30pm, I discovered Bill had given me very bad advice. I was met by a very, very irate mother, who wasted no time in chasing me round our living room, my father watching from behind a newspaper.

The plan, demonstrated some months ago by my sister, was to escape from the room, run along the hall, run up three stairs to the small landing, and rather than carry on up the stairs, get in the bathroom, lock the door and wait at least 15 minutes.

My mum made a number of tries to relieve me of my trousers, but owing to a remarkable spirit of self-preservation I managed to get out the room and start the short 20ft journey to the bathroom.

As I reached the bottom of the stairs three things happened:

My loosened short trousers left my waist and fell around my ankles.

I fell over with my chest on the landing and my legs trailing at 45 degrees down the 5 steps.

My Mum, in hot pursuit, caught me.

The struggle continued until my dad lent a hand by holding my hands away from my bottom, allowing mum to peel down my underpants and bring many hard smacks down on my now bare bottom.

After an age, the smacking finished and I was at last allowed to escape into the bathroom. I still remember trying to cool my scarlet bottom with toilet paper soaked in cold water.

Needless to say, I was on my best behaviour for weeks after.