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THE HOLE-IN-THE-WALL : A Social History Study of a Maritime Town in the Victorian era

THE HOLE-IN-THE-WALL : A Social History Study of a Maritime Town in the Victorian era [Kindle Edition]

Fred Cooper
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

In this extremely informative book the author sketches out life on board a sailing collier brigantine and in a maritime harbour during the Victoria era. Anyone with maritime ancestors who worked along the east coast of England may well find their ancestors listed here on ships visiting the port of Seaham Harbour in County Durham. Each chapter of the book takes the reader on a different journey building their knowledge of harbour life; the coast; the sea; the sailing ships; the town of Seaham Harbour and the thrills and perils of a mariners life.

The novelette that follows then embraces all of the themes that were explored in the earlier chapters and ends in a tale of disaster with an unexpected twist of irony. The book demonstrates so very clearly how fragile the lives of mariners and the ships in which they sailed were in the Victorian era.

Experience a fresh and real perspective of seafarers and their lifestyle in the 19th Century and the perils facing mariners on board sailing ships. (Approx 180 pages including illustrations and actual photographs of these sailing collier ships)

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 8724 KB
  • Print Length: 170 pages
  • Publisher:; 3 edition (3 Aug 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0059UIN7S
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #82,090 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Fred Cooper was born in 1950 in Seaham, a small town in County Durham on the North East coast of England.

He spent much of his teenage years sitting around coffee bars with his school friends, walking around the harbour and watching the pilot cutter bringing in cargo boats laden with timber and building materials and re-loading with coal bound for counties on the East coast of England. He agrees that anyone born in Seaham has a natural affinity with the sea, the harbour and the harbour area - in fact - the majority of Seaham born folk have ancestors who worked on the numerous sailing ships visiting the port in the Victorian era.

In his first published book, "The Hole-In-The-Wall" - a social history study - he explores the lives of mariners transporting coals from the coastal ports of County Durham to coal hungry counties on the east coast of England. If the reader has ancestors who worked on collier sailing ships visiting County Durham in the 19th century they may find them listed here. Each chapter takes the reader on a different journey building their knowledge of the coast; the sea; the sailing ships and the town of Seaham Harbour.

His second book is a spy thriller novel full of espionage, action and adventure. "A Master Mariners Tale" brings to the reader an all-round experience of the thrills and perils of sailing a brigantine in Victorian England and was inspired by real events and characters uncovered in the research for his first book. The town of Seaham Harbour provides the stage for this story. It was here that the aristocrat, the Marquess of Londonderry invested £165,000, a small fortune in 1828, to develop a new harbour that was to be the stimulus for the building of a new town. His grandson the 6th Marquess portrayed the typically flamboyant, fantastically wealthy and over-indulged aristocrat born into a privileged world but what secrets were lurking behind this façade? How could the covert activities of this party loving nobleman have any bearing on the security of his nation?

Richard Raine is the master of the collier brigantine "The William Thrift" that enters Seaham Harbour in April 1881. Thus begins a tale that takes the reader by the hand and walks them through a time and lifestyle long forgotten. Richard could never have imagined the adventure that was to unfold when he sailed out of harbour and the part he would play in maintaining the fragile peace that existed in Queen Victoria's empire. More than a century after these events took place the real story, "A Master Mariners Tale" is finally uncovered.

Fred's current work-in-progress, book two in the series of "A Master Mariner's Tale", is in preparation and progressing nicely. A reviewer commented that there appeared to be enough material and scope in the first novel to write an epic series. Fred agrees and has planned out the next adventure for his protagonist Captain Richard Raine. For the last six months Fred has scanned the weekly local newspapers from 1800 to 1873 as background research for the next novel in his epic series. In his view real events of the time provide the best story lines for a spy thriller novel.

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
3.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting account - a lot of lists 1 Jan 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a book that families wanting to trace ancestors in this part of the world may be interested in and also to find out something about their lives.

The lists were very difficult to read on a Kindle - don't buy the book for looking at the lists.

I quite enjoyed reading about the influence of the Londonderry Family - one of their properties is Mount Stewart in Northern Ireland and one of the 'jewels' of the National Trust.

Yes, the book is informative and I quite enjoyed reading it, but stick to hardcopy.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good book 15 Nov 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Good reading about life about a boat in a North East of England Port,don't read many books but this was easy.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Seaham harbour. hole in the wall 22 Jan 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Hole in the wall (Seaham Harbour. )interesting local book, will help people who are looking for family in the merchant navy.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars 26 July 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
good stuff
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 2.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Of more interest to local readers 28 Nov 2012
By JohnBoy - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The author collects lots of information and history about the coal coasting trade in east coast England in Victorian times. He then presents a brief, plausible, fictionalized story of a captain's life in the trade. The book seems a bit disjointed. Parts are fairly coherent history, such as the history of the port town. Other parts are sketched out, with verbatim reproductions of census forms. I was left with the impression that the author had lots of data he couldn't bear to cut out. That is not necessarily a negative; if you are a local person with an interest in such minutiae, or have an ancestor who sailed there, you may find this book a nice addition to your library. But if, like me, you are looking to "experience life on board a sailing collier brig in the Victorian era," as the book is marketed, you may be disappointed, as that portion of the book was too brief.
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