Penny Hampson

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 […]

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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 […]

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Falmouth and the Packet Ships

July 22nd, 2019

Researching for my next book, I’ve discovered a lot about the Falmouth Packet Service, and thought I’d share it with you here. The ‘King’s Post’ had been an established entity for some years, set up to carry mail such as State letters and dispatches both on inland routes and internationally to and from Great Britain. […]

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A Brief Tour of the Lines of Torres Vedras

July 15th, 2019

After a packed morning visiting the sites of the first two battles of Wellington’s Peninsular campaign (read about that here), we headed off in the afternoon with our excellent guide Mark Crathorne, to discover some of the forts that make up the Lines of Torres Vedras. Wellington, or Wellesley, as he then was, always thinking […]

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A Skirmish and Two Battles – All in One Day

June 28th, 2019

Last week was the start of a great adventure for me. I’d gritted my teeth and made the decision to fly to Lisbon. It wasn’t the destination that bothered me, but the method of travel — I confess, I’m a very nervous passenger. Anyway, I’m so glad I overcame my fears because I had a […]

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Researching Falmouth: Packets and Castles

June 10th, 2019

These last few weeks have mostly been spent on research for my next book. The main location I have in mind is Falmouth in Cornwall. For those of you who don’t know, Falmouth is a thriving seaside town near the western southernmost tip of England. Falmouth didn’t really exist as a town until the 17th […]

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A Squint at Wool and Brass: A Trip to Northleach, A Medieval ‘Planted’ Town

June 3rd, 2019

Last week I had another of my mini excursions. I love doing these small trips because there is always something new to see, and I often pick up ideas for locations to use in my stories. It’s also amazing how many delightful and interesting places there are on my doorstep (mind you, I’m lucky to […]

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What Time Does My Coach Depart? Researching Stagecoach Travel in the Regency

May 26th, 2019

Recently, I’ve been looking into stagecoach travel in the early 1800s. I already knew basic facts, but in order to get what may turn out to be a very small part of my next book absolutely correct, more research was required. The problem was that I have to get one of my characters from London […]

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A Trip Back in Time: Railways and… Rhinos?

May 20th, 2019

Last week saw another of my whistle-stop trips. It’s amazing what you can pack in when you have limited time. Husband and I visited Bridgnorth, Shropshire, a small market town in the Severn Valley, bisected by the River Severn. It was very much a short visit, we spent even less time there than we did […]

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