School Songs and Gymslips
Grammar Schools in the 1950s and 1960s
With tales from the days of indoor sandals and navy knickers, Latin verbs and transistor radios, semolina pudding and O Levels, this light-hearted social history is based on the experiences of pupils from 18 schools around the country and describes how things were for grammar school girls – at school and at home – between about 1955 and 1965.
The Rise and Fall of a British Grocery Giant
Although few now remember its name, Sanders Bros was a retail giant once as familiar as Tesco is today. Established in 1887, the flour, biscuit and grocery chain had 154 shops in London and its suburbs, and a market value higher than Marks & Spencer by the 1920s. This history charts the company's remarkable growth, its inter-war heyday, and its sudden demise in the 1950s at the hands of a shadowy cartel of investors.
Discovering Friendly and Fraternal Societies
Their Badges and Regalia
The most successful of the many friendly and fraternal societies that sprung up in Britain from the 18th century was the Freemasons. At one time millions of people belonged to similar clubs such as the Oddfellows and the Ancient Order of Foresters but social changes and the welfare state reduced participation drastically in the 20th century. This illustrated guide uncovers the history of these orders and explores their elaborate regalia. Off-mint.
From Cabin 'Boys' to Captains
250 Years of Women at Sea
For centuries the sea was considered a male preserve. Using interviews and unpublished sources, this book traces the lives of women seafarers, from 18th century pirates such as Anne Bonney, and girls disguised as cabin boys, to the cruise-liner and container-ship captains of today.
Through the Keyhole
Sex, Scandal and the Secret Life of the Country House
From around 1760 to the 1830s, stories about the sex lives of the rich and powerful were guaranteed to increase the readership of popular printed literature. Papers were so packed with salacious tales of secret sex that there seemed to be an epidemic of adultery among the aristocracy. This study explores the personal stories of men and women involved in adulterous affairs and compares their accounts of infidelity and its sometimes tragic consequences with the stereotypes of dissolute aristocrats in the popular press.
The Thames Ironworks
A History of East London Industrial and Sporting Heritage
Located in the heart of London’s Docklands, the Thames Iron Works pioneered metal-hulled ships in the mid 19th century, providing employment for much of the East End. Although it closed in 1912, its spirit lives on through the company's football team, which became West Ham United.
Octavia, Daughter of God
The Story of a Female Messiah and Her Followers
Jane Shaw describes how, in the aftermath of the First World War, a group of Englishwomen led by Mabel Barthrop – who was known as Octavia and believed to be the daughter of God – set about building a new Jerusalem in Bedford. Off-mint.
Horse-Drawn Transport in Leeds
William Turton, Corn Merchant and Tramway Entrepreneur
Although steam power was transforming the nation's transport in the 19th century, the horse-drawn tram survived in cities long enough to be replaced in most areas by electric traction, rather than by steam. This history examines the introduction of these early urban transport systems from the 1870s through the career of Yorkshire entrepreneur William Turton, who founded the Leeds Tramways Company and ran horse tramway services in major cities across the north of England.
Women's Factory Work in World War One
The appointment of two influential women from the Women's Factory Inspectorate to the Women's War Work Subcommittee during the First World War led to a commission to create a photographic documentary archive of women working in factories across Britain. GR Griffiths examines that project and presents a selection from the thousands of images that covered 19 industries and recorded the working conditions of the women and the industrial processes in which they were engaged.
Ancestors in the Arctic
A Photographic History of Dundee Whaling
Drawn from the collections of Dundee Art Galleries and Museums, this volume of early photographs shows the sailing ships and the highly skilled crews of the Dundee whaling industry, often set against the dramatic ice seas and landscapes of the Arctic. Offering insights into an almost forgotten aspect of Dundee’s history, the book demonstrates the importance of whaling for the city between the mid 18th century and the First World War.
A 1950s Holiday in Bognor Regis
Tubby Isaacs’s jellied-eels stand in the coach park, shrimping, Punch and Judy on the beach, The Importance of Being Earnest at the Roof Garden Theatre, the Aldwick Hundred Motor Cycle Club ... Drawing on the memories and snapshots of visitors and residents of Bognor, this book looks back to the 1950s and describes the holidays, including getting there, accommodation and entertainments, in Britain’s sunniest southern seaside resort.
Seadogs Aboard an English Galleon
English ships of the 1520s were built principally for coastal sailing but over the following century, designs, and the life of the men aboard, changed rapidly as Elizabethan mariners ventured far beyond home waters. Drawn from accounts of hundreds of 16th century and early 17th century ocean voyages, including the words of Drake and Ralegh, this book explores how these intrepid seamen coped with tropical heat, violent storms, bad water, rotten food, disease, navigational problems and enemy fire.
Voices from the Dark Years
The Truth About Occupied France 1940–1945
Active collaborators and resisters were equally small minorities of the French population during les années sombres – the dark years of the Second World War; most people simply did what they needed to to survive. Based on interviews and previously unpublished accounts, this book looks beyond the traditional narrative of a defiant nation to reveal stories of compliance and partnership with the new regime as well as resilience in the face of extreme hardship.
The Workers' War
British Industry and the First World War
Despite early optimism that the First World War would be swiftly concluded and cause little disruption to British life, the long struggle in fact turned British industry on its head, encouraging technological and organizational advances and a rethinking of traditional gender roles as women took the place of men in the factories. This book examines how different industries coped with the demands of the war and the heroic efforts made by ordinary men and women to keep industry moving.
The Carriage and Wagon Works of the GWR at Swindon
The GWR Swindon Works produced some of the iconic locomotives of the steam era, but its rolling stock - the all-important freight wagons and passenger cars - have received less attention from steam enthusiasts and historians. This study tells the story of the other half of the GWR Works, traces the development of carriage and wagon design and, with the help of archive photographs, explains how carriages and wagons were built at Swindon in its heyday.
Masters and Servants in Tudor England
Life in Tudor England was ordered in a very strict social hierarchy, and the divisions between the classes were firmly maintained: it was understood that everyone, apart from the monarch, served someone, and service was valued rather than denigrated. Drawing on a wealth of contemporary sources, Tudor expert Alison Sim investigates the role of service at every level of society, and provides an informative and entertaining account of the lives of the people who kept the wheels of daily life turning.
The Acid Bath Murders
The Trials and Liquidations of John George Haigh
John Haigh did not deny the murders of which he was accused during his trial in 1949 but claimed insanity, citing a history of disturbing dreams and claiming that he had drunk the blood of his victims before dissolving their bodies in sulphuric acid. This new analysis of the famous case draws on unpublished archive material, including letters that Haigh wrote from prison while awaiting execution.
An Illustrated Life of Thomas Telford 1757–1834
The Scottish engineer Thomas Telford was nicknamed the ‘Colossus of Roads’ because of the engineering genius he brought to British roads, bridges, tunnels and canals. This concise biography by a local author tells how he established his reputation in Shropshire before creating landmarks such as the Menai Bridge and the Ellesmere and Caledonian Canals.
Coopers and Coopering
Breweries and pubs today rely on metal containers, but in the past, wooden casks or barrels were prized for their strength and versatility. In this illustrated guide, Ken Kilby, himself a cooper, surveys the history of the craft and describes the complex, physically demanding skills that went into making a barrel.
The Baby Boomer Generation
A Lifetime of Memories
This blend of memoir and social history explores the experiences of the generation born in the aftermath of the Second World War. Decade by decade, from rationing to the internet, it notes not only events of national and international importance, such as the Cuban missile crisis, but changes to the fabric of everyday life: pop music, ready meals, shell suits and reality TV.
Forget the Anorak
What Trainspotting Was Really Like
During the 1950s and 1960s Michael Harvey was an ardent trainspotter – a hobby which ‘kept us teenagers off the streets of Portsmouth and out of any mischief’. In Diary of a Trainspotter he chronicled his observations of the last years of steam; this book is devoted not to the trains but to the antics and travels of the spotters.
1900–1914 Before the Lights Went Out
In Devon before the First World War, the established social order, with aristocrats in their great country estates at the centre of the local community and economy, was under threat. This illustrated history surveys the attitudes and experiences of Devonians of all social levels at this pivotal period as perspectives on class, representative democracy, opportunities for women, and the role of Empire were changing.