Friday, December 15, 2023

A reading of The Mine by L.T.C. Rolt

Robert Aickman and L.T.C. Rolt were among the pioneers of the movement to preserve and restore Britain's inland waterways. I believe they had fallen out by the time of the Inland Waterways Association's first Festival of Boats, which was held here in Market Harborough in 1950.

Both wrote ghost stories. Aickman is celebrated as one of the modern masters of the genre, while Rolt is rather forgotten.

I did read some of Rolt's stories years ago. My memory is that his set ups were good, with railways and canals prominent, but let down by too much dialogue with quaint locals. 

"Lor bless 'ee, sir, there bain't been no trains here for twenty years nor more."

That sort of thing.

This reading of Rolt's story The Mine suggests my memory may be unfair, and not just because it is set at Snailbeach in Shropshire.

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