Brief Lives
 Bourne people


Front cover


THOMAS CARLYLE, the Scottish historian and essayist (1795-1881), wrote that history is the essence of innumerable biographies and indeed it is the minutiae of everyday life that gives us a glimpse of the way it was in past times. The men and women who were the movers and shakers of their day are recorded only in the dusty documents and fading newspaper files of centuries gone by and although their worthy connections and their passing is usually recorded in some detail, there is little chance of getting any more than a glimpse of their everyday lives, their friends and families.

The more intimate relationships that reflect character and personality seldom find a place in history unless they are described in letters or diaries but these are rare in the history of Bourne, perhaps because literacy was less widespread and fewer people could write with clarity. We are therefore left with what we have, mostly official records and fictitious accounts by historians for those who made their mark in earlier centuries and public records for those who came after although as we move into the 19th and 20th centuries, things began to change and we are able to obtain more information about the great and the good than hitherto.

The main criticism of this book will be about those who have been left out and this is not that they have been overlooked but because I have confined these lives to just fifty, leaving the opportunity perhaps to add another fifty in a few years’ time although those who have come after do not seem to be quite so interesting as those who have gone before.

Brief Lives is published by Bourne Civic Society with a cover price of £14.99 and all proceeds  go towards the society for future projects and the maintenance and upkeep of the Heritage Centre.


Copies are available from
Walkers Books, 19 North Street, Bourne
The Heritage Centre, South Street, Bourne
(Opening hours 2-4 pm Saturdays & Sundays)
or by post from Bourne Civic Society, 21 South Street, Bourne, PE10 9LY
(send cheque for £14.99 plus £2.50 for p&p).
 This is a substantial volume so please email for overseas postage costs.




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