There was the man who stood in court, accused of murder, and never said a word. He
hadn’t spoken to anyone for years. Then there was the squire who was almost killed
by a crocodile, and the riot that broke out over a funeral path. These are just a few of
the tales in this collection.
The county of Yorkshire has arguably more than its fair share of stories in its colourful
and unique social history, and this book brings together a selected collection of
some of the best in the files of Stephen Wade, one of the foremost historians and
storytellers on Yorkshire themes.
Here the reader will find records of astounding
longevity, bizarre crimes, unexplained appearances from some other dimension, and
in short, there will be surprises and shocks along the way as the focus shifts from
famous to infamous and from eccentric to heroic people who have figured in the story
of the Ridings.
There are unpredictable appearances too, of people usually associated with other
places, like George Sala, friend of Dickens, who tried to launch his ballooning career
in Hull, or the adventurer Harry de Windt, who was a judge at the Doncaster Air Show
when the women pilots competed with men and often won.
Yet the traditional tales are here too, so country houses, sea coasts and some
intriguing deviants and ‘characters’ have their place. Perhaps most compelling of all
are the stories from the odd footnotes of history, narratives missed in the chronicles
of this great English shire.
Stephen Wade is a writer and storyteller with many books on his home county of Yorkshire in
print. For Halsgrove he wrote Hauntings in Yorkshire, along with other paranormal tales. When
he is not writing, he is performing, presenting his Uncle Albert stories at festivals, libraries and
clubs, based on his short story collections. His latest social history books include No More
Soldiering and The Justice Women.
Imprint: Halsgrove. ISBN 978 0 85704 299 6, hardback, 210x148mm, 144pages. Published October 2016.