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My Family History

Me and my children

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My son Dave

David Andrew BALL

Dave was born in 1978 in Swansea, South Wales. Dave is a talented artist and in June 2001 graduated from the University of Derby with an honours degree in Fine Art. Dave enjoys cycling, travel, videography and cinematography, and he plays the guitar. After graduating, Dave moved from Derby to London where he planned to pursue postgraduate studies. Dave has his own extensive Website and is a founder member of the Disco – Artists Collective and the London-based Discotheque group. Over the last few years, Dave's interests in art have taken him to Antwerp, Arles, Barcelona, Berlin, Brussels, Madrid, New York, and Paris. In September 2007, he achieved a distinction in his Masters degree in Contemporary Art Theory at the prestigious Goldsmith's College (University of London). Since 2009 he has been living in Germany, and since 2010 has been based in Berlin where he teaches English as a second language (see his website at Dave and his former partner Andrea live in Berlin, where their children Emma and Robin were born (in September 2012 and January 2016 respectively).

Derby graduates

Dave pictured in 2001 (left) with his fellow Fine Art undergraduates at Derby University, and (below) working on a watercolour sketch.

Dave painting


Right: Dave in Swansea (September 2005)

Residency in Berlin, May/June 2008

From 13 May to 23 June, Dave was artist-in-residence at Galerie Art Claims Impulse, Berlin, Germany. His six-week residency of specialist video, performance and multimedia space was followed by a solo show of work produced. The exhibition ran from 21 June to 5 July.

Below: Dave at the Berlin Wall, May 2008 [photography by Dave Ball].
Dave in Berlin

Residency at Worpswede, March-May 2009
From March to May 2009, Dave was artist-in-residence at Künstlerhäuser, Worpswede, near Bremen, Germany. His three-month residency culminated in an exhibition of his video work Being Somewhere.
Residency at
July-September 2013

From July to September 2013, Dave was artist-in-residence at Est-Nord-Est, Saint-Jean-Port-Joli, Quebec, Canada. His three-month residency culminated in an exhibition of his video work The Museum of the Uninteresting Experience. See Dave's Blog of his experiences there.

Below: Dave, Andrea, and baby Emma, Aberystwyth, Mar 2014.
Dave, Andrea & Emma, Aberystwyth Residency at
March-May 2014

From the beginning of March to the end of May 2014, Dave is one of three international artists currently in residence at Aberystwyth Arts Centre, Wales, at one of the venue's Creative Studios designed by Thomas Heatherwick. The Arts Centre website describes Dave's work as "focused on the idea of absurdity. He often begins by manipulating everyday objects, places or attitudes to create a simple, illogical premise. This provides a framework for exploring an alternative 'world' and to critically reflect on the arbitrariness of our own reality.
Details of Dave's work in Aberystwyth will appear here in due course.

My Family History Page.

My granddaughter Emma

Dave and Emma


Emma was born to Dave and Andrea on 16 Sep 2012 in Berlin, Germany.

Right: September 2012 – Proud Dad (Dave) with Emma, just a few days old

Below: January 2013 – Proud Grandad (me) with Emma, four months old.

Dave and Emma


My daughter Liz

Elizabeth PARTON (née BALL)

Liz was born in 1976 in Swansea, South Wales. For several years Liz and Nathan (now her husband) lived in Slough, Berkshire, but in 2004, new career opportunities brought them back to Wales. In the autumn of 2005, Liz and Nathan bought their own home in a small village in Carmarthenshire. Liz's caring nature is reflected in the work she's done over the past few years with various organisations including the Samaritans, an asylum-seekers support group, and an adoption agency. In 2004, she embarked on a degree course in psychiatric nursing at the University of Wales Swansea where she graduated with honours in September 2007. Liz enjoys visiting such exotic places as India and the Caribbean. In 2006 she developed a keen interest in long-distance running since when she has participated successfully in several 5 km and 10 km charity races.
In December 2007, Liz gave birth, at West Wales General Hospital, Carmarthen, to Isaac Albert Parton, her first child and my first grandchild (see below).
In January 2011, Liz gave birth, at home, to Heidi Winifred Parton, her second child and my first granddaughter (see below).

Liz and NathanLiz and Nathan

Above: Liz and Nathan pictured (left and centre) in May 2001 at the Homelands Festival near
Winchester and (right) in September 2005 on their wedding day in Swansea.

Below: A happy picture of Liz, Nathan, and Isaac outside my home in Brecon in Dec 2008.
Isaac was nearly one year old.

Liz, Nath, and Isaac, December 2008

My grandson Isaac

Liz and Isaac

Isaac Albert PARTON

Isaac was born on 23 Dec 2007 at West Wales General Hospital, Carmarthen, South West Wales.

The photographs were taken at three months (left), ten months (below right), and 2½ years (below).


Isaac and Liz

My granddaughter Heidi

Heidi - 2 hours old

Heidi Winifred PARTON

Heidi was born on 24 January 2011 at her parents' home in Carmarthenshire, South West Wales.

The first two photographs were taken at two hours (right) and three weeks (below left).

Heidi - 3 weeks old

Below: February 2010 – Liz with Heidi (3 weeks) and Isaac (aged 3 years).
Liz, Heidi and Isaac

Below: January 2013 – Nathan and Liz with Heidi (nearly 2 years) and Isaac (nearly 5 years).
Nath, Liz, Heidi and Isaac

Liz and Dave
Above: Liz and Dave (Islington, London - October 2002)

Liz and Dave

Left: Liz and Dave on Liz's wedding day in September 2005.

My Family History Page.



John Leonard BALL

I was born in 1940 in Birmingham, England. For 31 years, I worked in Health Care, firstly as a radiographer, then as a radiography teacher. Career opportunities brought me (and my "ex") to Swansea in 1974. I retired (aged 55) in 1995. From 1978 until 2007 I lived in the village of Ystalyfera and for a short while in Godre'r Graig, both in the Swansea Valley, South Wales, but in February 2008, I moved to Brecon, the county town of Breconshire. Apart from researching family and local history and developing my website, I'm active in the local family history society, and help run the website of the Breconshire Local & Family History Society. I also enjoy music, photography, travel, the countryside, writing, motoring, steam railways, astronomy, and DIY.

Me, aged 65Me and Liz

Above: Two photographs of me, taken on Liz's wedding day in September 2005.
Me (left) aged 65, and (right) sharing a joke with Liz. The lady in the centre is Liz's maternal grandmother.

My Family History Page.


My Cats

Lady in Dec 2008
Lady (2006- )

Lady was born about 2006. We adopted her as a two-year-old on 15th December 2008 from the RSPCA, the British animal welfare organisation. The RSPCA had named her Venus but we changed her name to Lady as soon as she arrived home. The photo (left) was taken the day we brought her home. Lady has always been a very friendly cat and enjoys being held and cuddled. She had been brought to the RSPCA as a stray in September 2008 after being injured in a road accident. Her right front leg had been broken, but the veterinary surgeon plated the fracture and by the time we collected her she was fine, apart from a slight limp. We kept her indoors for about three weeks but on 2nd January 2009 we let her out into garden. She enjoys her freedom very much and as the photo below shows, Lady is an agile climber of trees!

Lady climbing a tree

Toby in 1999
Toby, aka "Tobe" (1995-2008)

Tobe was born about 1995. Little is known about his early years because I adopted him in November 1999 from the RSPCA. When he first arrived, Tobe was very timid and unhappy with humans, possibly because he had been badly treated in a former home. But as the weeks and months passed he gained in confidence until in his later years, he thrived on human company, though he still hated being picked up.

Like most cats, Tobe was a very independent individual and in his earlier years he spent a lot of time outdoors. By the time he reached his 'teens, he spent more time indoors, especially at night. From 1999 until his sudden death from heart failure on 5thJune 2008, he was my constant companion. He tolerated well the upheaval of moving home three times in 2007 and early 2008 when I eventually settled in Brecon. He absolutely loved exploring the large garden surrounding our new home. We felt it appropriate to choose a quiet corner of the garden as Toby's final resting place. The photo below was taken just two days before Toby died.

Toby's last photo

Although he looks quite innocent and angelic in the earlier photo, taken in 1999, like most cats Toby had a dark and wild side, too. You'll find lots more pictures illustrating some of his exploits on his own special Toby Webpage.

My Family History Page

John Ball, Brecon, Mid Wales - Contact me

This page last updated 5 January 2018
Details of each website feature (for newcomers) Direct links to each website feature (for regulars) Advance news of new developments on my website Summary of all the latest updates Gateway to Welsh Family History Archive Help for those having problems accessing my website A link to the main 'gateway' page to my entire website