From the Paleozoic volcanoes that stained its soil, to the Saxons who occupied it, to the Tudors who traded its wool, to the Land Girls of wartime . . .
John Lewis-Stempel charts a sweeping, lyrical history of Woodston, the quintessential English farm. He digs deep into written records, the memories of relatives and the landscape itself to celebrate the farmland his family have been bound to for hundreds of years. We feel the joyful arrival of oxen ploughing; see pigs rootling in the medieval apple orchard; and take in the sharp, drowsy fragrance of hops on the air.
‘Lewis-Stempel is one of our finest nature writers . . . He writes with delicate observation and authority, giving us in Woodston a book teeming with fascinating details, anecdotes and penetrating insights into the real cost of our denatured countryside.’ Sunday Times
‘The English countryside is ‘a work of human art, done by the many and the nameless’ and John Lewis-Stempel wanted to celebrate it. He has succeeded admirably.’ Daily Mail