Lawless and Immoral

Staying close to home today.

A town nearby is a small market town, a bit run down, a bit ordinary, a bit boring. But…

…it has a fascinating history and a few famous sons and daughters.


It’s known as a “Roman” town. The library is built around a “Roman” wall.



A few minutes walk away from here is the ugliest, 1960’s, square, red brick building  that was built after the destruction of Emily Sellwood’s house. Shame on them!



Who was Emily Sellwood? She is better known as Emily, Lady Tennyson. The wife of another local boy, Alfred.


'Half a league, half a league,

Half a league onward,

All in the valley of Death

   Rode the six hundred.

“Forward, the Light Brigade!

Charge for the guns!” he said.

Into the valley of Death

   Rode the six hundred.'


Yup. That Alfred.






Mmmn. Nice. He’d’ve looked like this when he walked round town, methinks.


Another (in)famous son is William Marwood. Who?


marwood plaque



Yes. I know. He invented the Long Drop. And hanged more than a few famous baddies.

Apparently he was buried in a local church (which is now an Antique shop) but the headstone was removed because of souvenir hunters. Yuk.


But the only nearby local celebrated by the town is one Joseph Banks.


NPG 5868; Sir Joseph Banks, Bt by Sir Joshua Reynolds
by Sir Joshua Reynolds, oil on canvas, 1771-1773


“Banks was appointed to a joint Royal Navy/Royal Society scientific expedition to the south Pacific Ocean on HMS Endeavour, 1768–1771. This was the first of James Cook’s voyages of discovery in that region. ”

His claim to fame is being responsible for the colonisation of New South Wales, Australia. WTF?


So – they bulldoze Emily’s house but build a new “centre” celebrating the life of Joseph Banks.

How’s that for distorted modern history?


Oh. BTW. Lawless and Immoral was how the run-of-the-mill locals were known in the Victorian era.

Infamous to a man/woman.

Gotta love a whole town full of rebellious ne’er-do-wells  :o)

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