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ISBN: 9780861834471
AUTHOR: Ann Heeley, Louise Clapp, Liz Snelgrove
Somerset Voices
Somerset Voices
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This fascinating and copiously illustrated volume is drawn from the collection of over six hundred oral recordings of Somerset people made since 1973 and held at the Somerset Rural Life Museum [SRLM]. Life is shown as it really was in the twentieth century in the words of those who lived through great changes. It features memories of childhood, everyday tasks, social life, manual work and the joys of mechanisation, cider making and cheese making, war time changes, peat digging and much more.

The majority of the men and women recorded were born in Somerset or lived most of their lives in the county, and there is a diversity of background and status, with people living in cottages, farmhouses and manor houses in villages and in towns.

Those interviewed came from across the county including west Somerset, the Quantock villages, the Levels and the Moors, the coast, central and south Somerset and the Mendip hills. The book has three themes: AtWork, At Home and In the Villages and the Towns, and the interviewees talk about their lives in agriculture, rural industries and crafts as well as their social activities and home life.

As the doyen of Somerset historians, Robert Dunning, says: “This book…is the memories of the guardians of our past. Here are people who grew up with candles and tin baths and outside loos and who could remember, as clearly as if it were yesterday, the excitement of adequate light at the flip of a switch, the luxury of instant warm water, and the comfort of a water closet without the expedition into the garden…The memories in this book and in the whole collection are of another world; of smaller towns, of self-sufficient villages, from which many never ventured far. It was a world of simple pleasures, home-made entertainment; of lives lived close to the land and to nature. These are voices of a special time and of special places; they speak nostalgically, though in truth life was tough, sometimes very hard indeed.”

ANN Heeley MBE, Louise Clapp and Liz Snelgrove are all Friends of the Somerset Rural Life Museum and have been working together for the last five years.

Ann Heeley MBE, a farmer’s daughter from Cheshire, and a founder member of the Friends, has been actively recording Somerset people since 1979. Over the years she met many interesting and kind people who have so willingly helped with this project. The Oral Collection now totals over 600 recordings. In 2010 Ann was awarded an MBE for her contribution to the Somerset Oral Archive.

Louise Clapp joined the Friends in 1982 and was a founder member of the Research Group. She has been involved in many research projects culminating in exhibitions, publications and teachers packs which aim to enhance the educational value of school visits to the museum.

Liz Snelgrove, undertook a certificate in archaeology at Bristol University which led to her being involved with a group researching and publishing local history. Liz joined the Friends in 2005 and has found the work with the oral recordings fascinating with hearing the many personal memories of Somerset people.

Imprint: Somerset Books. ISBN 978 0 86183 447 1, hardback, 214x230mm, 144 pages. Published September 2010.

Somerset Churches & ChapelsSomerset Churches & Chapels - £14.99
This book, edited by Robert Dunning, is written by experts and profusely illustrated by a wide range of colour and black and white photographs, engravings and drawings, together offering an up-to-date study of church architecture and history in Somerset.
Somerset - The Summer LandSomerset - The Summer Land - £9.99
Journey with Charles Wood and discover the secrets and wonders of England’s cider country. Region 0 (all countries) DVD. Approximately 60 minutes running time.
Somerset The Glorious CountySomerset The Glorious County - £14.99
Tony Howell carries on the great tradition of artists who have been stimulated by this fine landscape: through his lens he captures the essential beauty and character of Somerset, the glorious county.
Somerset FamiliesSomerset Families - £19.95
Thirty four families closely linked with the historic county of Somerset, are described with panache by county historian Dr Robert Dunning.
Charles Wood's Somerset Quiz BookCharles Wood's Somerset Quiz Book - £8.99
Drawing from the small print of history and personal experience Charles Wood teases and warms hearts in this entertaining Somerset Quiz Book. This is an ideal companion for goggle-eyed grockles and inquisitive settlers wondering what they have let them-selves in for – and a useful refresher for natives whose history, geography and just about everything else leans toward ciderous befuddlement. Other formats available: Amazon Kindle
Surviving Another Somerset YearSurviving Another Somerset Year - £12.99
In this sequel to his bestseller, How to Survive in Somerset, Charles Wood ‘desnuglifies’ himself from beneath a Wiveliscombe duvet to rediscover that beyond his warped blue front door the English county he loves is still alive and kicking. Other formats available: Amazon Kindle
How to Survive in SomersetHow to Survive in Somerset - £12.99
A blend of the satirical and the poignant, this is book for the long suffering local, the goggle-eyed grockle, the filmstar bearing guns, the well-heeled city type seeking rustic charm, or merely the inquisitive intrigued by ‘How to Survive in Somerset’. By Charles Wood. Other formats available: Amazon Kindle
Portrait of the Somerset CoastPortrait of the Somerset Coast - £14.99
Neville Stanikk's rambling journey from Lynmouth (in Devon, but only just) to Bristol docks, told in more than 140 stunning photographs representing his discovery of an ever-changing landscape filled not just with seaside towns but with history and mysticism; picturesque villages and hills; castles, towers and ancient buildings.
West Somerset in the NewsWest Somerset in the News - £19.99
With more than 200 fascinating and evocative illustrations West Somerset In The News re-discovers great stories long forgotten, the madcap and the solemn, the intriguing and the frivolous, to paint a vivid portrait of life over a century and a half in celebration of the 150th anniversary of the West Somerset Free Press.
Somerset Address BookSomerset Address Book - £12.99
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Somerset Coast from the AirSomerset Coast from the Air - £14.99
In this book we are taken by renowned aerial photographer Jason Hawkes on an aerial journey along the coast starting at Avonmouth, one of the most industrialised landscapes in the Westcountry, prelude to our travels in Somerset, journeying west for some 40 miles (64km) until we reach the North Devon border. Along our route are the major towns of Portishead, Clevedon,Weston Super Mare and Burnham-on-Sea, these large towns gradually giving way to villages and small harbour towns until we meet the moorland heights of Exmoor.
Somerset in the Second World WarSomerset in the Second World War - £8.99
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The Somerset WetlandsThe Somerset Wetlands - £19.99
Somerset Wetlands is an original, multi-disciplinary and contemporary review of the Somerset Wetlands through time, with an expert text designed to appeal to a wide readership.
Bath & Wells A Diocesan HistoryBath & Wells A Diocesan History - £19.99
Robert Dunning, doyen of Somerset historians, ranges widely over 1100 years of history and across the diverse county, from the windswept heights of Exmoor to the pastures of South Somerset, and from the seaside resorts of the coast to the glories of medieval Wells and Georgian Bath, to paint a vivid portrait of this community of faith through more than a millennium.
The Spirit of SomersetThe Spirit of Somerset - £4.99
Somerset is one of the most photogenic counties in England. Panoramic landscapes, big skies, ever-changing seascapes, grand houses and thatched cottages, all catch the eye of renowned photographer Christopher Nicholson.
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This collection of over 140 superbly composed photographs by Caig Hutchings depicts one of England’s little gems. Although recognized nationally for its natural beauty, never before has such a varied and intimate portrait of the hills been assembled.
Web Price: £14.99
17.37 EUR 18.74 USD 24.55 AUD

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