Welcome to Poppyland Publishing - East Anglian Specialists
Whether you're living in Norfolk or Suffolk, Cambridgeshire or Essex, planning a visit, interested in local history, tracking down your family history or love the natural history of East Anglia, we hope we'll have some titles - books and DVDs - to interest you.
You can use your credit or debit card to make direct purchases from the site. In addition to Poppyland's own titles, we have the full range of titles in print from the prestigious Centre of East Anglian Studies. To use the 'Product Search' facility above, you only need to enter one word of interest - you don't, for instance, need to use the whole title of a book.
Try the buttons on the left for the different categories of titles we publish. And explore our 'Support and Resource' pages. These are all free - and always growing.
On the right you'll find short presentations about some of our products. To buy, click on the appropriate button in the left column. Ordering from this site is a First Class Royal Mail service direct from the publisher.
Author Gareth H.H. Davies follows up his titles The Fall of Yarmouth Suspension Bridge
and The Clown King - Popular Entertainment 18140-1860
with another dip into the entertainment world of the mid 19th century. With Pablo Fanque and the Victorian Circus
he looks at the life of Norwich-born entertainer, horseman and impressario Pablo Fanque, born William Darby in 1810.
In describing the circus as "the ultimate form of spectator entertainment" the author relates how it professionalised, commercialised and industrialised types of performance that had existed for hundreds of year. The fact that Pablo was African British tells us something about Victorian Society, but so does the fact that he was born of very humble origins and became one of the best known and loved circus proprietors of the Victorian period. Click on Pablo Fanque and the Victorian circus for the section where you can place an on-line order.
Using a range of early 20th century documents from the Norfolk Record Office, in Ordinary Women, Extraordinary Lives
author Frank Meeres looks back to a time when women began to make their mark in politics and public life. From the suffrage movement and those who served in different roles in the First World War, the early break-throughs in the politics of Norwich and Norfolk in the 1920s, to moving stories from the Second World War, Ordinary Womenr, Extraordinary Lives
focuses on determination, heroism and restoration in these women's stories
Click on Ordinary Women, Extraordinary Lives to go to the section where you can place an on-line order, or call at your bookshop for a copy.
The years 1789 to 1815 were traumatic for British history in many ways A 'mad' king had lost the American colonies and now revolution in France, welcomed by many East Anglians, had invoked fear in many others. Thomas Paine and Horatio Helson were two Norfolk men who would come to prominence for very different reasons. Suffolk would be a temporary refuge for emigre French families. And Essex would be a marching ground for thousands of British troops who stood ready to throw back Napoleon's forces. Local voices preached revolution and loyalty. Offshore, the North Sea fleet sailed from Yarmouth, Harwich and numerous small coastal towns to combat the French privateers.
Click East Anglia against the Tricolor, 1789-1815 , as author Julian Foynes draws on a multitude of sources to telll the story of an English region against revolutionary and Napoleonic France. There's a video introduction at East Anglia against the Tricolor.
Overstrand in the Great War
is the story of the men and women of the north Norfolk village one hundred years ago. In some ways of course it is not a unique village story but is shared with hundreds of towns, villages and communities across the United Kingdom. But of course it is a collection of individual stories, each unique in tis own right. Author Tim Bennett, a former Head Teacher in the village school, has collected together a vast range of material on the lives of the villagers, particularly those whose names appear on the War Memorial and the Roll of Honour.
From regular soldiers to VAD nurses, Territorials, Kitchener's volunteers and those who flew or went to sea, those who did not return and those who came back with changed lives, the author has gathered their stories.
To make an online order, clck on Overstrand in the Great War
Boudica and Raedwald are two of the dominant characters in the early history of East Anglia, the English counties of Norfolk and Suffolk. What do we know about them and about the thread of continuity that links them? How close did Boudica come to driving the Roman army out of Britain in AD61? What influence did four centuries of Roman rule have on Raedwald, whose grave ship at Sutton Hoo contained such fabulous treasures?
In seeking answers to these questions, John Fairclough examines the discoveries of archaeologists over the past hundred years. Click Boudica to Raedwald - East Anglia's Relations to Rome to go to the page from which you can order online.
The latest offering from Norfolk's own humourist, raconteur and general wordsmith Keith Skipper - 'A Rum Ole Norfolk Year'. Keith, one of Norfolk's most colourful characters, scales his mountain of thirty years worth of daily diaries to pick out a wide range of memorable snippets. Hundreds of intriguing questions are answered in this new title. Click on 'A Rum Ole Norfolk Year'
to go to the section where you can place an on-line order, or pop into your bookshop or local store for a copy.
And to hear from Keith himself, click as he introduces 'A Rum Ole Norfolk Year'.
Happisburgh - The Story of Brtain Starts Here
is a bold title for one of the booklets in our "Towns and Villages" series. But as well as recounting the story of the village in more recent times, author David Stannard goes right back to about 900,000 years ago, the date suggested for the footprints discovered in a layer of clay on Happisburgh beach.
The church and the infamous sands, the constant loss of land to the advancing sea and the story of wreck and rescue are all drawn together in this booklet, an ideal read to introduce you to a fascinating location. You can buy your copy at all good local shops or to order online, click on Happisburgh - The Story of Britain Starts Here to go direct to the page from which you can buy the book.
To complement one of our most recent titles, Lilias Rider Haggard - Countrywoman
, we're pleased to bring back into print another book by Victoria Manthorpe, Children of the Empire - The Victorian Haggards
, telling the stories of her several uncles. Their careers spanned the Army, the Royal Navy, the Diplomatic Corps, the Indian Civil Service and the Colonial Service, all at the peak of the British Empire. They were part of its successes, its foibles and its failures. It was their brother H. Rider Haggard who would be best know because of his many adventure stories, but their tales deserve telling in their own right. Click for the section where you can order Children of the Empire - The Victorian Haggards
from on-line or make a note of the ISBN to order through your local bookshop.
Veteran broadcaster David Richardson introduces his book 'In at the Deep End' here and explains his first contact with Dick Joice of Anglia Television
David is known throughout the farming world from his numerous magazine and newspaper articles of the last fifty years. BBC Radio listeners will be with familiar with his voice from his many years of broadcasting and viewers in the east of England are likewise familiar with his face from BBC East and Anglia Television. All the while, with wife Lorna, he has been actively looking after his own farm and bringing up his three children and now grandchildren. The book makes an enjoyable and informative read for all with an interest in the agricultural world and the food supply chain.
To go directly to the section where you can order the title online, click In at the Deep End.
A History of Swaffham National Schools
is a title we've added to our Norfolk Documents
series, where we take the original documents from the county's archives and provide them with a context for a wider readership. Norfolk is fortunate in having a wealth of such documents surviving form the past millennium. In this case the author and his colleague bring us the log books of the National Schools of Swaffham from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. To a careful transcription of the texts, he has added introductions to give historical background and adds notes where appropriate; a selection of pictures further helps our understanding. It's available in local shops or for access to our on-line order system, click A History of Swaffham National Schools
The first British shot of the 1914-1918 war at sea was fired not far from the Suffolk coast on the morning of 5th August 1914. It was aimed at the enemy mine layer which had been laying a minefield in the coastal shipping channels. So begins Robert Malster's authoritative account of the maritime war in the North Sea. It was a war that did not end until months after the Armistice, with the need to clear the many minefields laid by both sides.
If you've enjoyed Robert Malster's two book on Norfolk's maritime history - and he's busy with a further title on Suffolk's story - you'll want to add this title to your collection. And if your interest is to look back on stories of the Great War, this is certainly one for you. It acknowledges the much-covered battle of Jutland, but concentrates on the considerable activities of the trawlers and drifters, destroyers and submarines, cruisers and naval aircraft that defended the UK shores from Harwich to Scarborough. Click North Sea War 1914-1919 for our 'Wartime' section, where you can order your copy.
For more than 40 years Mike Page has piloted his own aircraft to capture scenes across East Anglia from the air. Being both flier and photographer gives him to chance to choose the ideals days for using his camera and the results show in the quality of his pictures. This year the selection we've chosen shows Norfolk Country Houses from the Air
in all their glory - and the settings in which they were built.
Many of the pictures will have appear on his web site, in the local press or in other titles, but this book gives a chance to present them around a common theme. We hope you'll enjoy the collection and appreciate yet another angle on the Norfolk countryside. The book is available in shops across Norfolk but if you'd like to order online, simply click on Norfolk Country Houses from the Air, then on the shopping basket and follow through the instructions.
I Walked by Night
and The Rabbit Skin Cap
are perhaps the two best-known of the books Lilias Rider Haggard brought to print. She acknowledged that both were written by countrymen that she knew; she had edited their words as little as possible to bring them to a wider reading audience. Norfolk Life
, Country Life
and Country Scrapbook
were from her own knowledge and experience , bringing an understanding of the English countryside to both her Norfolk readers and an international audience. Her final work was to bring together the story of her father, H. Rider Haggard, in The Cloak that I Left
. His many tales of wild adventures across the British Empire were known to tens of thousands of readers; this new biography Lilias Rider Haggard: Countrywoman
confirms her status as an author in her own right. Click Lilias Rider Haggard
for the section where you can use our on-line ordering facility.
As a disciple of the "don't throw that away 'cos it might come in handy one day" creed, Keith Skipper has a vast collection of pictures, newspaper articles anecdotes as a result of his years working in the print media, on the wireless and as a freelancer. With this new title, his 39th book, he has made a selection from this hoard and spiced it round with his usual humour to provide us with another chuckle or two.
Naturally it is a Norfolk collection. He pays warm tribute to his band of enthusiasts from all over Norfolk who have topped up his magpie's nest at regular intervals over the years. You'll find this latest title in shops across the county but if you'd like to order on-line, you can click on Keith Skipper's Norfolk Scrapbook, click the shopping basket and we'll get the dickey out and bring a copy over to you - or maybe the postman would be quicker!
Authors Pam Inder and Marion Aldis have made a speciality of researching the lives of 19th century women, particularly women who achieved commercial success in a world largely dominated by men. This latter statement was certainly true of the world of artists, but in researching the story of Catherine Nichols of Norwich for a chapter in an earlier title, they became convinced she warranted a biography of her own so A Forgotten Norwich Artist: Catherine Maude Nichols
was written. To purchase a copy of the book, click A Forgotten Norwich Artist: Catherine Maude Nichols
to go to our on-line order page or check out your local bookshop.
Friday 2nd May 1845 was a day of disaster in Great Yarmouth. Crowds had flocked to the suspension bridge across the River Bure to watch Nelson the clown. He was to undertake his usual stunt to promote the visit of Cooke's circus by travelling on the river in a wash tub - pulled by a team of geese .As the many on the bridge saw Nelson approach, they surged to one side and with a crack one of the supporting chains gave way. Hundreds were tumbled into the water and many did not survive.The Fall of the Yarmouth Suspension Bridge
gives an account of the day, what led up to the disaster and life in Yarmouth at that time. Click The Fall of the Yarmouth Suspension Bridge
if you'd like to order a copy on-line, or call at your favourite bookshop.
Doin Different: New Ballads from the East of England
is certainly different for us! It's a collection of 39 ballads telling East Anglia stories - primarily about Norfolk events and legends. Verse, scores and songs from across the region provide their own way of telling our history. From Boudica to Bingo, Cromwell to Cavell, there's a range of subjects to enjoy - and the book leads to many on-line links for the songs and settings to the ballads in audio and video form. Click to go to the order page for Doin Different: New Ballads from the East of England
Breeding Success - My Life as a Norfolk Farmer
(Paperback edition) is the personal account of a family's journey from Scotland to the open pasturelands of east Norfolk and the success of the family members in developing award winning dairy herds of Friesians and then Holsteins. But the story is much more than that, for behind the personal account is that of agricultural development in county a part of its wide heritage in all sorts of farming. Within the story is the background to decision making in terms of cereal or dairy, land acquisition and mechanical development, all information which will add to the understanding of farming in Norfolk in the second half of the 20th century. Clicking on Breeding Success
will take you to the section where you can order the paperback edition of the book
Breeding Success - My Life as a Norfolk Farmer
(Hardback edition) is the personal account of a family's journey from Scotland to the open pasturelands of east Norfolk and the success of the family members in developing award winning dairy herds of Friesians and then Holsteins. But the story is much more than that, for behind the personal account is that of agricultural development in county a part of its wide heritage in all sorts of farming. Within the story is the background to decision making in terms of cereal or dairy, land acquisition and mechanical development, all information which will add to the understanding of farming in Norfolk in the second half of the 20th century. Clicking on Breeding Success
will take you to the section where you can order the hardback edition of the book
In 2013 we published the booklet 'Wells next the Sea: A Little History', to provide the many visitors with a brief history of the town they might be in for just a few days. It became obvious that the considerable research that author Roger Arguile had put into that work warranted a more comprehensive publication, thus Wells next the Sea: A small port and a wide world
came into being.
The town has a story that spans many centuries. Whether your interest is specic to the town or in wider history, it is a book for you. Roger Arguile has skillfully positioned the story in the wider context of feudal power, of the church, of local government and of economic development, so that we can better understand and appreciate Wells next the Sea. Click Wells next the Sea - A small port and a wide world to order the paperback edition online and you can click to hear from author Roger Arguile.
Digging Sedgeford - A people's archaeology
is the first comprehensive review of the archaeological and historical work undertaken over the last nineteen years at the Norfolk village. It contains findings, conclusions and questions raised in the first dozen years and gives an outline of the subsequent work, where analysis and evaluation continues.
SHARP, the Sedgeford Historical and Archaeological Research Project, is the organisation which undertakes the excavation and the historical research and by clicking here you can hear more about the book from two of the team members. To go direct to the page where you can order you copy, click Digging Sedgeford - A people's archaeology.
Maritime Norfolk Part Two
completes Robert Malster's comprehensive study of Norfolk's maritime history. In the first volume, we travelled from Wisbech to Kings Lynn and then round the coast to Caister on Sea. This latest title concentrates on Great Yarmouth, from the first establishment of a herring market on the gradually forming sandbank, through to the gas, oil and wind farm businesses it hosts today. On the journey through the centuries, we see the town's part in England's medieval fleets, the Royal Navy's North Sea Squadron operating from the port, the great days of the drifter fleets and the time of the trawlers fleets of Gorleston - and many more aspects of this part of Norfolk's maritime heritage.
To order your copy, click on Maritime Norfolk Part Two and then on the shopping basket logo. Click to hear direct from author Robert Malster as he introduces this title and goes to some of the sites mentioned in the book.
Nine Norfolk Women - Succeeding in a 19th century man's world
takes individuals and families from across the county who succeeded, succeeded in business and enterprise in a time when such success might not be expected. Money-lending and lighthouse keeping, commercial enterprise in dressmaking and developing a chain of shops, writing and farming are amongst the skills demonstrated by the women featured.
Authors Pamela Inder and Marion Inder also demonstrate how, from iniitial evidence from the light-weight details to be found in census records and local directories can be expanded through dilgient research into chapter length biographies. The subjects of the book are drawn from across the county of Norfolk, form Great Yarmouth in the east to Kings Lynn in the west, from Harleston in the south to Cromer in the north. You can click on Pam Inder and Marion Aldis to hear a bit more from the authors about how they undertook their research. You can order your copy from all good bookshops or online - click for the order page for Nine Norfolk Women.
In just 36 pages but with 40 pictures, Wells-next-the-Sea - A Little History
an ideal introduction to the history of the town over the last millennium. Coal was being brought into the town from the 13th century, wool from the rich Norfolk sheep industry travelled in the opposite direction. As the small ports elsewhere on the Norfolk coast gradually became less accessible, Wells grew in importance and the barley fields of north Norfolk led to the growth of a substantial malting industry. The great flood of 1953 is perhaps the best known of the inundations of the sea, but Wells has had many other occasions on which the ocean has threatened it. With whelking and crabbing and the currently expanding need to service the wind farms of the North Sea, author Roger Arguile illustrates how Wells strives to keep all in balance and remain a pleasant home and holiday destination.
Crabs and Shannocks - The Longshore Fishermen of North Norfolk
is a DVD which tells the story of today's daily hunt for crabs and lobsters from the beaches in and around the towns of Cromer and Sheringham. At the end of the nineteenth century over a hundred boats worked from Sheringham beach and the many more from Cromer. We can pick up evidence of the fishing from Saxon times, with many men venturing far available, as well as the specialisation of the fisheries on the north Norfolk chalk ridge. From ancient documents to the photography of the Victorain age, through historic film and the written record, a story of over a thousand years of maritime history are told in this DVD.
The Crabs and Shannocks DVD runs for 67 minutes and you can click to view a trailer of the DVD. To order your copy online, click for the 'DVDs and Videos' section.