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The Pitmen's Requiem
     

The Pitmen's Requiem

by Peter Crookston
 

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Peter Crookston's book offers a beautifully written journalist's account of a Durham mining village and the Great Northern Coalfield woven around the life of Robert Saint, the composer of Gresford, a brass band composition commemorating an earlier mining disaster in which 256 workers died. Crookston brings his formidable observational qualities and writing skills as a

Overview

Peter Crookston's book offers a beautifully written journalist's account of a Durham mining village and the Great Northern Coalfield woven around the life of Robert Saint, the composer of Gresford, a brass band composition commemorating an earlier mining disaster in which 256 workers died. Crookston brings his formidable observational qualities and writing skills as a journalist to produce a gripping narrative with utterly compelling characters and a heart-rending culmination in the demise of the mining industry under assault by Thatcher. The story is told in a gentle, unpretentious way, frequently giving voice to the characters themselves, many of whom the author knew personally or got to know in preparing the book. Apart from capturing a critical moment in a disappearing world, the book offers a vantage point from which to reflect on our own culture, and what we have lost in post-industrial Britain: the loss of community which did so much to sustain and nurture those miners in their desperate plights. This is as much a history of culture and place as much as it is biography, a book that is at once an elegy and a tribute

Editorial Reviews

Morning Star
A very readable and enjoyable book.
Journal
A wonderful book
The Shields Gazette
Highly Recommended.
Mail on Sunday
Crookston has constructed a potent tribute . . . he makes you feel deeply nostalgic for a way of life that was so dangerous and so brutal.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780857160690
Publisher:
McNidder & Grace
Publication date:
01/05/2014
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
232
File size:
2 MB

What People are Saying About This

Tony Benn
Peter Crookston's book is very remarkable. He knows the area well, and he's captured the spirit of the industry and the story of Gresford and has brought it together in a very skilled way. I think it is something that future generations will go back to, to understand the Gresford Hymn but also the industry it speaks about. A very, very remarkable book.
From the Publisher
"This is an elegy and a tribute—a moving account of the pit closures and miners' strikes, as well as an exploration of a landscape and a way of life that is vanishing day by day."  —Margaret Drabble, author, The Middle Way

"The story, ostensibly of one remarkable man's life, is a tunnel back into a complete world . . . a rich and complex way of life that is now sealed off and lost, like most of the old mine-workings that lay at the heart of it."  — Michael Frayn, author, Headlong

"Peter Crookston's book is very remarkable. He knows the area well, and he's captured the spirit of the industry and the story of Gresford and has brought it together in a very skilled way. I think it is something that future generations will go back to, to understand the Gresford Hymn but also the industry it speaks about. A very, very remarkable book."  —Tony Benn

"A very readable and enjoyable book." —Morning Star

"A wonderful book."  —Journal

"Highly Recommended."  —Shields Gazette

"Crookston has constructed a potent tribute . . . he makes you feel deeply nostalgic."  —Mail on Sunday

Meet the Author

Peter Crookston is a journalist and the author of Villain: The Biography of a Criminal.

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