Nicola Chester: 'On Gallows Down' - a sneak peek!

2nd October, 2021 - 2nd October, 2021

Concession's are available for: Museum Friends, Edward Thomas Fellowship Members and Petersfield Museum Volunteers



Start and end times
4:30pm - 6:00pm
Book Now!

We are very excited to be able to offer you one of the first opportunities to discover Nicola Chester's new book 'On Gallows Down'.

On Gallows Down is a powerful, personal story shaped by a landscape deeply loved; one that ripples and undulates with protest, change, hope – and the search for home.

From the girl catching the eye of the ‘peace women’ of Greenham Common to the young woman protesting the loss of ancient and beloved trees, and as a mother raising a family in tied and tenanted farm cottages on grand, country estates, this is the story of how Nicola came to write – as a means of protest. Of how she discovered the rich seam of resistance that runs through Newbury’s people from the English Civil War to the Swing Riots and the battle against the Newbury Bypass, the hope she finds in the rewilding of Greenham Common after the military left, and the stories told by the landscapes of Watership Down, the gibbet perched high on Gallows Down and Highclere Castle.

Nicola's writing has always been influenced, and slightly haunted, by Edward Thomas' poetry and writing - that sense of loss and yearning, the restless search for home and belonging; the compulsion to write and sometimes, its frustrations.She feels a connection with him in the landscape she writes about. One of her most prized possessions is a letter from Myfanwy Thomas, Edward's youngest daughter, discussing Nicola's long-runnng local newspaper column.

Nature is indelibly linked to belonging for Nicola. She charts her story through the walks she takes with her children across the chalk hills of the North Wessex Downs, through the song of the nightingale and the red kites, fieldfares, skylarks and lapwings that accompany her; the badger cubs she watches at night; the velvety mole she discovers in her garden and the cuckoo, whose return she awaits.

On Gallows Down is about how Nicola came to realise that it is she who can decide where she belongs, for home is a place in nature and imagination, which must be protected through words and actions.

This is your chance to meet the author, get a copy of the book and have it signed! 

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