New book explores the lesser known facts about Buxton - from underground mushroom factory to an Egyptian style mansion
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Julian Cohen’s latest publication Surely Not In Buxton is out now and takes readers on a journey of 20 chapters where people, sport, entertainment and workplaces are all looked at.
He said: “The idea all came about when I was writing my book about the forgotten pubs in Buxton and I realised how much I didn’t know about the town.
“The more you start looking the more you realise there are so many wonderful bits of history that make Buxton what it is and I wanted to write them all down.”His book shines a light on Frank Soo, a man of Chinese heritage who captained Stoke City FC and played for England but was born in the town and his parents owned a Chinese laundry in the 1930s.
Julian said: “Buxton had tennis grounds at the Pavilion Gardens which rivalled Wimbledon at the time and was the first place to offer equal prize money for the men and women’s games.
“There used to be a huge racecourse on Fairfield Common and had huge race meetings but it was shut down because of too many riots.
“The book is full of little bits that people may not know about the town.
“I’ve lived here for 25 years and I had only heard a handful of these things before I started.”
Julian says many people say the Duke of Devonshire built The Crescent but he rightly points out he did not, it was his work force.
“I want to find out what the conditions were like, was it safe, who had what skills at the time.
“I like looking at history not from a rich person’s view as it is often told but from the regular people.”
He said he most enjoyed meeting the older members of the community and hearing their stories before they are lost forever.
Surely Not In Buxton is out now priced £10 from Scrivener’s Bookshop, High Peak Bookstore at Brierlow Bar, Buxton Visitor Centre, Poole’s Cavern, Buxton Trading Post, High Street Post Office and High Street News with all money going back to the publisher Buxton Civic Association.