Gordon Bennett - by Duncan Harley


Well that’s me off to pen book three. The A-Z of Curious Aberdeenshire was a good first stab at the history of the north-east and, although I say it myself, made for a good follow-up on those well-researched Leopard Magazine features.  Next, of course, is The Little History of Aberdeenshire - due out on March 1st - which I hope might make it onto the dusty bookshelves of those who appreciate popular history on a local level.

With a working title of ‘Long Shadows – more tales from the north-east’, the next work is likely to include the Garvie murder, much more about Tomintoul and of course a take on Gordon Bennett. Gordon, of course, went on to found the New York Times while his well-loved son inspired the popular epithet ‘Gordon Bennett’.

Garvie-wise, I have already been given a comment – which I may ignore - suggesting that sleeping dogs might lie. The participants are now graveside although one, Sheila, was until a few years ago often seen walking her dog along the boardwalk @ Stonie having served her various prison years.

The convicted two were of course extremely lucky to escape the gallows in the wake of the hanging repeal in the 1960’s. In fact, the Garvie killers were held on remand in the very prison where Henry Burnett – the very last man to be hanged in a mainland British prison – met his death in 1963.

But it’s a good story and The Flying Farmer AKA Kinky Cottage tale will certainly inhabit pages of the new book alongside stories about Samurai’s, astrology and of course Maggieknockater.

I’m thinking that book three might be out in far off December 2019, but please don’t quote me on this just in case it all goes pear-shaped. Meantime, if you have anything to add to the Garvie murder tale, please pm me on FB.

I will, of course, commit any comments to anonymity unless otherwise advised.
In the meantime I hope and trust that you will pre-order a copy of book two: The Little History of Aberdeenshire since it’s a great read. Well I would say that ... it's a measly £12 ...

Duncan Harley is author of The A-Z of Curious Aberdeenshire plus the forthcoming title: The Little History of Aberdeenshire - due out in March 2019


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