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Frome society’s new year book

DID you know that Frome had its own Olympic medallist? Or that a major English poet, a contemporary of Shakespeare, was born at Beckington? 

These and many other fascinating by-ways about some of the people who have lived in or around Frome are revealed in the latest Year Book published by the Frome Society for Local Study.

The editor is Alastair MacLeay and he has brought together a rich harvest of articles about the area. The bicentenary of the birth of Charles Dickens is marked by an article on Dickens’s connections with north Somerset. The 450th anniversary of the birth of Samuel Daniel (of Beckington) is marked by a comprehensive account of his life and work.

The Olympic medallist was Jack Lauterwasser who won a bronze medal at the 1928 Amsterdam Olympics. He lived on to 2003, a few months before his 100th birthday, and for many years was a regular cyclist with the Frome CTC (Cyclists’ Touring Club) in the 1980s and 1990s.

During World War Two the government called for spare metal that could be melted down and turned into aircraft. Many public railings were confiscated and one article records what happened in Frome. Old postcards show where there used to be railings. Metal stumps protruding from low walls show are all that are left.

Other pieces in the Year Book tell us all about St Hugh of Lincoln, about an eccentric Victorian historian who lived near Wells, local family history, art treasures in St John’s Church, and more.

The Year Book is profusely and imaginatively illustrated, and at £10 a bargain for all lovers of Frome and its region. It can be bought at Frome Museum and at Hunting Raven Bookshop in Cheap Street.