When we moved to Somerset (Southwest UK), he no longer raced them, but we still kept homing pigeons, and it was my job to take care of them.
I think this was possibly because he didn't want to climb the rickety ladder that led to the "pigeon loft" ie the attic space above the double garage. I remember that ladder even more than I remember the pigeons! as it was only a few pieces of mismatched wood nailed together haphazardly. I DEFINITELY remember the day it gave way, and as a 10-year-old I was left hanging by one arm from the trapdoor opening which led into the loft. Then the trapdoor banged shut on my arm. When you are ten, a six-foot drop onto concrete is a huge distance. When I dropped to the floor (eventually) I remember running down the driveway to our house, screaming all the way, and then my mother standing terrified in the doorway and asking me to *shake hands* (which I thought was really weird, until years later I realised she was checking that my fingers still worked and my arm was not broken).