Category Archives: history

The 1926 General Strike in the Black Country
David Taylor

9781911175995 In May 1926 Britain experienced a General Strike that lasted nine days. Why it occurred and what happened have been the subject of very polarised accounts, reflecting the different interpretations of the different groups of people involved as well as the differing viewpoints of the observers. Trade unionists, miners, the T.U.C., the Conservative government, Marxists and Communists, moderates, economists and, of course, historians of all shades of opinion, have all highlighted different aspects of this conflict. Wolverhampton and the Black Country have been little involved in this debate, mainly because the most dramatic events took place elsewhere. However, all the issues of the General Strike were reflected in Wolverhampton and the Black Country and in such a way as to allow all the different opinions of the protagonists to be more clearly discerned.
Published: Dec 2017
Extent: 140 pages
Paperback: £6.50
ISBN: 9-781911-175995



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The general strike is variably interpretable, because it really did mean different things to different people and this book explores these different points of view within the context of Wolverhampton and the Black Country.
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The Impact Of World War One on the Smestow Vale Villages
David Taylor

9781911175742 Perhaps the most popular strand of the local history of War World One concerns those who died in the war, looking at their lives and war experience, particularly the action in which they died or the unit they served in. Another strand considers the Home Front, particularly in the towns and cities or in locations where a notable activity took place, such as Zeppelin Raids or explosives manufacture. However, there is a third strand, equally important but little investigated, and that is the impact of the war on rural communities. This booklet looks at one such community, on the edge of the Black Country but clearly rural in character, the villages of South Staffordshire centred on what is now known as Smestow Vale.
Published: Aug 2017
Extent: 64 pages
Paperback: £5.00
ISBN: 9-781911-175742



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These villages have their own tale to tell of what happened between 1914 and 1918. There were the absences and deaths of many young, and not so young, men. But also there were air raid precautions, lack of public transport, increasing food production for local towns and themselves, new housing requirements and many other irritations and difficulties caused by the war. Followed by the celebrations at the Armistice and the signing of the Peace Treaties, and then the commemorations for those who would never return. The Impact of World War One on the Smestow Vale Villages looks at these villages to find out what we can discern after 100 years of what life was like in the countryside during The Great War.
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The Shrewsbury Drapers Company
Nigel Hinton

9781911175803 A history of the Shrewsbury Drapers Company from the Middle Ages until the present day with special attention to the new Drapers' Almshouses. The Shrewsbury Drapers' Company looks at the effect of the Company on the town and on its development, the various charitable guilds and trusts connected with it and finally at the long struggle to create new almshouses for elderly citizens of the town and the successful conclusion to the project.
Published: Sept 2017
Extent: 250 pages
Paperback: £17.50
Hardback: £25.00
ISBN: 9-781911-175506



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Nigel is a chartered accountant with a passion for local history and cloud technology, he was master of the Shrewsbury Drapers Company in 2011/12.
He is married to Bridget they have three daughters and four grandchildren. Nigel`s other publications include Historical Hostelries with David Trumper, Silhouette, the story of the Little X, and a book for children, Baa Baa Blodwyn
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An account of the achievements of John White, one of the true founding fathers of America
David Cuckson

9781911175643 John White was a man of vision. He was rector of the town of Dorchester in the English county of Dorset from 1605 until his death in 1648. Under his leadership, after a disastrous fire, the town was transformed into a model caring community, embodying his Puritan ideals. He then sought to export this model across the Atlantic, to what was becoming known as New England. He became the driving force behind the Dorchester Company and then the Massachusetts Bay Company, and he inspired many folk from Dorset and the surrounding area to emigrate and found a new Dorchester in Massachusetts. He also lived to see some of these early settlers go on to found what became known as Windsor in Connecticut. This is his story, and theirs, a story of new worlds at home and abroad.
Published: May 2017
Paperback: 98 pages
Price: £6,99
ISBN: 9-781911-175643



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David Cuckson studied law and theology at the University of Cambridge. He has worked as a Congregational/ United Reformed Church minister and as a solicitor in local government and in private practice. He is now retired and lives in Dorchester.
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History of medieval Weymouth and its evolution as a trading port.
James Crump

9781909644809 Weymouth is usually thought of as a ‘Georgian’ town, but this book shows how much of the physical appearance of the town was determined many years before the arrival of George III himself. It examines the parallel histories of the twin towns of Weymouth and Melcombe Regis from the eleventh century to the end of the sixteenth, charting their rise and subsequent decline. It explains how their early growth was based on the great medieval trades of wool and wine and how growth was influenced by their connections with France which developed particularly in the years of the Angevin Empire. Their later decline was caused by the disruption of these trades and by the ravages of war in the Channel, part of the great conflict with France known as the ‘Hundred Years’ War’. In the midst of this the population was overwhelmed by the catastrophe of the Black Death.
Published:7th July 2015
Paperback:112 pages
Price:£6.99
ISBN:9-781909-644717
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James Crump read modern history at the University of Oxford and taught school students, undergraduates and extramural classes for many years. Before moving to Dorset he has written on social and industrial history subjects mainly in northern contexts. He has been researching Dorset history for many years and is especially interested in the early history of towns.

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The story of Father Ignatius’s community at New Llanthony Abbey
Hugh Allen

9781911175230 To the diarist Francis Kilvert, his near neighbour Father Ignatius (born Joseph Leycester Lyne in 1837) seemed ‘entirely possessed by the one idea’ of introducing his distinctive version of the monastic life into the mid-Victorian Anglican Church. Rejecting any suggestion that he should temper his grand ambition by meeting comfortably protestant Britain half way, Ignatius endured ridicule, harassment and regular episcopal embargo, but persevered until his dying day with what he believed was his individually God-given mission. Ignatius’s enduring memorial is ‘New Llanthony Abbey’, an eccentric, now partly ruined Gothic extravaganza at Capel-y-ffin, a remote upland hamlet on the Welsh border. Monks and nuns came and went – some evidently pursuing a genuine religious vocation but failing to find it there; others apparently from less worthy motives.
Published:July 2016
Paperback:504 pages
Price:£18.50
ISBN:9-781911-175230


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Hugh Allen tells the story of Ignatius’s community from its origins in early 1860s East Anglia to its migration to Wales in 1870, its history through the following four decades (including the controversial 1880 Apparitions), and its demise after the founder’s death in 1908. He also describes the later history of the former monastery, home in the 1920s to the sculptor and typographer Eric Gill and for many years to the family of his eldest daughter, and brings the story up to date with information about the Father Ignatius Memorial Trust and the continuing appeal of New Llanthony as a place of pilgrimage. The author is a longstanding member of the Father Ignatius Memorial Trust.
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The Church Times
In the midst of the burgeoning religious fervour of 19th-century Britain, the tragic-comic figure of Joseph Leycester Lyne [Fr Ignatius] must surely represent the epitome of … the “virtuoso religion” of some of its more enthusiastic and eccentric characters. As such, a book like Hugh Allen’s has been lacking for a long time….. The whole work is forensically researched, meticulously referenced, and fluently written – a winning combination that makes it as enjoyable as it is useful – and the footnotes are often as interesting and informative as the main body of the text. Lyne was either a faithful thwarted prophet or a volatile pious lunatic. Perhaps he was a heady combination of both; but Allen leaves that judgement to the reader, and does so in a masterly fashion. This book has been well worth the wait.

William Davage, New Directions, December 2016
‘An enjoyable, constructive, detailed and compelling study … This is a substantial and significant book, well-researched, rooted in thorough archival sources and attractively, if weightily, presented … comprehensive in its scope, measured and considered in its judgements.'

News Letter of the Anglo Catholic History Society, Autumn 2016
Much meticulous research has gone into this substantial book … Hugh Allen has utilised a wide range of archive relating to Ignatius himself and the community and its associates across the whole the chequered range of its history … All in all this book is a fascinating compendium of information about a bizarre and ambiguous monastic experiment.

From its infancy in the 1980s to its vibrancy today
Asia’s Financial Industry

9781911175414 The development of the financial industry in Asia has been a history of boom and bust. Over the past four decades, it has transformed from its infancy during the 1980s to the vibrancy today. Looking back at his career from a new joiner in the industry to regional executive with several custodian banks during this period, the author has captured in this book many interesting stories, episodes and events in this fascinating process of development, from the perspective of a custodian, to add some colourful dimensions to the financial history of the region.
Published:July 2016
Paperback:246 pages
Price:$16.5
ISBN:9-781911-175414


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Based in Hong Kong, Lawrence Au is a seasoned professional who has been at the forefront of Asia’s financial industry for more than thirty years. A pioneer and thought leader in the securities services area, he has been instrumental in building several custodian banks' businesses in the region. Under his stewardship as the Asia Pacific head with BNP Paribas Securities Services and Northern Trust, he took the custody franchise of the two banks off the ground to become a leading service provider in the market. Lawrence frequently speaks at conferences and features in industry publications, and was named Custodian Leader of the Year 2012 by Asia Asset Management and Custodian Banker of the Year 2013 by The Asset. Lawrence was presented Lifetime Achievement Award by Asia Asset Management in 2016.
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Peace and War A New Look at World War 2
Rudolf Raimond

In this exhaustively researched account, Rudolf Raimond examines the steps leading up to World War II and describes how the initial conflict expanded from western Europe to consume almost the entire world.

From careful examination of source documents, including the speeches of several of the main protagonists - in particular Hitler, Stalin, Roosevelt and Churchill - he establishes that the steps to war and its continuation were far from being entirely the responsibility of the Germans and shows that pro-war elements within the British establishment were a significant factor in the ensuing tragedy.

He also looks at war crimes committed by the various belligerents and, while not in any way exculpating the Germans for the atrocities of the holocaust, shows that guilt is more evenly spread than is at present widely assumed.

A fascinating new look at World War II.
Published: March 2019
Paperback: 502 pages
Price: £19.99
ISBN: 9-781912-419913
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