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Century of memories in new book

By North Devon Journal  |  Posted: July 07, 2011

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A GROUP of budding historians has published a book about North Molton life over the past century.

A Celebration of the People and History of North Molton has been lovingly created over the past two years by the town's history society.

It features old photographs, tales of the village's mining history and contributions from village folk about farming, church life and school days.

Creators said the book, which was made to capture the blend of "tradition and modernity" in North Molton, soon turned into a village project.

Society secretary Larry Klein said: "You could say the book has become a village enterprise, given the variety and number of people who contributed their invaluable memories, stories and photographs.

"The book conveys the richness of life in the village now, and a flavour of the uniqueness of its past history."

As well as publishing century-old photos of village life, the book reflects on the days when North Molton abounded with pubs in the mining era and had an almost Wild West feel.

There are also stories about the estate, the main employer in the village until the 1940s, and the dramatic impact the Second World War had on North Molton.

The book also features heart-warming tales about sport, the village youth clubs and past and present shops and pubs.

One section, A Farmer's Wife, was written by the late village stalwart Greta Bray, who ran different village groups and clubs throughout her life.

There are also articles about local landmarks, such as the Flitton Oak and the Bampfylde Clump, as well as traditional village activities, including shooting.

Mr Klein said the aim of the book, the cover of which was painted by local artist Ken Hildrew, was to seek out the authentic voice of those who know and care for North Molton.

The hardback book, priced at £19.50, will be launched at a free event on Thursday, July 14 in the Old School, The Square at 7.30pm.

The book will be sold at: Bulleds shop, North Molton; Printworkx, South Street, South Molton and from Judy and Mac McCarthy on 01598 740333.

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