Betty Timms was born in 1886 in the North Oxfordshire village of Juniper Hill. She was the younger sister of Flora Thompson, the author of the trilogy 'Lark Rise to Candleford'.
The Timms family were certainly blessed with literary talent. Like Flora, Betty became an accomplished writer, best known for her children's book 'The Little Grey Men of the Moor', published in 1926. Its success may have inspired Flora to write her novels.
After Betty's death a draft typescript for an autobiographical novel was discovered among her possessions: it forms the body of this book and recalls a childhood spent in the villages of Juniper Hill (Lark Rise in Flora's books) and Cottisford. Schools days, holidays, celebrations, working days, evenings in the poublic house and afternoons in the cottages are all described in detail. Flora described the 1880s, Betty gives us a portrait of the 1890s and includes the Queen's Jubilee.
Betty's observations and new stories cast fresh light on the Timms family life. A number of characters can be recognised as those who appear in Lark Rise. Queenie is a notable example. Betty develops the lives of some very interesting individuals into wonderful cameos, seen through the eyes of a child growing up among them.
Betty's stories will undoubtedly delight those who were echanted by Lark Rise. All will be spellbound when they peep into the pin-a-sight that she has so lovingly created for us.
This book is currently exclusive to a number of independent bookstores, and can be ordered directly from Mostly Books: