Penny Hampson

Have you got Toothache? Then See a Blacksmith

November 13th, 2019

This week I had to make an emergency visit to the dentist. Fortunately, I didn’t require any major treatment, but I wondered what might have happened, if I’d been living in the early 1800s. At the time, dentistry was not a regulated profession; in rural areas patients would go to the local blacksmith to have […]

Read More

Discover More About Life in Nelson’s Navy

November 1st, 2019

My previous blog post covered only some aspects of life in the Royal Navy at the time of the Napoleonic Wars, so I thought I’d write a bit more about other aspects of life. Being pressed into the navy, didn’t mean one worked for nothing — all members of the crew were paid. From 1797, […]

Read More

Worse Things Happen at Sea? A Look at Life in the Navy of the Napoleonic Wars

October 22nd, 2019

In researching for the latest story in my Gentlemen Series, I’ve been looking at life in the British Royal Navy of the period. I have to say, a lot of it made grim reading. If women had a hard time with lack of independence, and limited means of making a living during the early 1800s, […]

Read More

Tewkesbury – The Town That Bought an Abbey

October 8th, 2019

Last week saw me on my travels again, this time to the historic Cotswold town of Tewkesbury, which lies at the confluence of the rivers Severn and Avon. It was the scene of a decisive battle in 1471, when the House of York defeated the House of Lancaster in the Battle of the Roses. But […]

Read More

Work and Play in Falmouth

September 15th, 2019

Last week I enjoyed a short break in one of my favourite places — Falmouth, Cornwall. Why do I love Falmouth? Lots of reasons, not least the wonderful feeling I get of being somewhere on the edge of an adventure. Falmouth was after all the jumping off point for many people travelling to different parts […]

Read More

A Quick Trip to Mechelen

September 7th, 2019

Just a short post today. Earlier this week I visited Mechelen, a city close to Brussels in the Belgian region of Flanders. Mechelen has also been known as Mechlin (English) and Malines (French). It was just a flying visit as, having set off reasonably early on Tuesday morning to drive there via Eurotunnel, we didn’t […]

Read More

The British Royal Navy and the Peninsular Campaign

September 1st, 2019

A major contributing factor to Wellington’s success in his Peninsular Campaign was the role played by the British Royal Navy. The British economy at the time of the Napoleonic Wars was based on trade, insurance, and financial services. Portugal, and access to its colony of Brazil, was crucial to Britain’s commercial interests. British woollen goods […]

Read More

Mary Nisbet, Countess of Elgin

August 13th, 2019

This post first appeared on the English Historical Fiction Authors blogspot I expect most people will have heard of the Elgin Marbles and the controversy surrounding them. The focus of their story has always been Thomas Bruce, the 7th Earl of Elgin and 11th Earl of Kincardine, and whether he acquired the marbles illegally. But […]

Read More

A Taste of Lisbon and Sintra

July 29th, 2019

I thought I’d share with you a little bit more about my recent trip to Lisbon.Apart from the one day tour we’d booked months previously with the British Historical Society of Portugal, husband and I didn’t have any set plans. However, enticed by our hotel receptionist, we signed up for another guided tour, this one […]

Read More