Born and brought up in Lincolnshire, Tim played left-half in his school team’s creaking 2-3-5 formation which was cruelly exposed by the ball-playing strikers of Faldingworth Juniors (think England v Hungary in 1953 except with tiny people and East Midlands accents). At the age of 10 he already knew he would never play football at professional level.
After that, school was guitars, painting, the English Civil War and the lure of pretty country girls. Then onto the University of East Anglia, where he did English and Film Studies, which seemed to involve lots of pretending to read 18th Century novels. After a spell at a small Norfolk agency writing recruitment brochures for a top midlands pie manufacturer, he moved to London where he experimented with non-linear career trajectories – art packer, market superintendent, surveyor, stall holder, picture librarian, camera tester and film reviewer. He began writing, illustrating and cartooning for When Saturday Comes in 1990.