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New Frome Times’ series on Frome’s illustrious and (sometimes) murky past

IN THIS edition of the Frome Times we welcome two local authors and historians, who will become regular contributors through a feature entitled ‘Frome Times Past’.

During the coming months, Mick Davis and David Lassman will delve into Frome’s illustrious, but often murky past, to reveal not only fascinating facts, but also larger than life characters.

These include a famous general whose wartime HQ was based in the town, a former vicar who wrote the most influential work on witchcraft and a prize-fighting mercenary who served in Spain.

Mick and David have written about the town in ‘Historic Inns of Frome’ and ‘Frome and the Great War’, but their first collaboration is the recently-published book ‘The Awful Killing of Sarah Watts’.

The book is the first full-length account of Frome’s most infamous murder, which took place on an isolated farm in September 1851 and was investigated by a detective from Scotland Yard.

Forthcoming books they are working on together includes ‘Foul Deeds and Suspicious Deaths in and Around Frome’ and the ‘Visitors’ Historic Guide to Somerset’.

Mick moved to Frome in 2006, while David arrived in 2011. Both quickly acquired a keen interest in the town’s past and met on a local history course run by Frome Community Education (FCE).

As well as writing about the area, Mick volunteers at  Frome Museum and coordinated an archaeological dig at the Fromefield standing stones site in 2016.

David meanwhile, has run courses on Frome’s history for the FCE, is an expert on Jane Austen and also writes fiction, most notably the Regency Detective series, set in nineteenth century Bath.

Mick said, “We hope ‘Frome Times Past’ will be eye-opening, informative and nostalgic, but above all we hope it will be an enjoyable way for Frome Times’ readers to connect with their town’s history.”

David added, “No doubt we shall also at times be shedding light into certain dark aspects of Frome’s long and turbulent history, so you may not look at the town in the same way again.”

The first instalment, in the next edition of the Frome Times, will disclose what happened to the law-breakers of the town throughout the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.

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