Born in Yorkshire, Collinson's family moved to Australia in 1930. He received a secondary teaching diploma from and from 1955 to 1961 taught mathematics and English in various Melbourne secondary schools. From 1961 to 1964, Collinson worked as the editor of The Educational Magazine. In 1964, he returned to England. In the 1970s Laurence worked in his West Hampstead apartment as a Gestalt / Transactional Analysis group therapist.
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