About Fenlandphil

Now retired I have been living and working in the Cambridgeshire Fens for most of my life. Blacksmithing and wrought ironwork started as a hobby and became my profession, I have been involved in engineering in various forms all my working life.

Making things for the garden was not only an outlet for my artistic creativity but it also helped others, garden designers and gardeners realise theirs. I am conscious that what I created, although satisfying to me, in itself, will only be complete as an object when it is in place, within its’ final setting.

Since retiring I have joined my local University of the Third Age branch (U3A). One of the groups I belong to is Whittlesey Wordsmiths, a creative writing group. Together as a group, we have published five anthologies of our work, Where the Wild Winds Blow, A Following Wind, Three Sheets to the Wind, Jingle Bells and Tinsel Tales as well as Windy Christmas (that will be the sprouts).

Collection number six will be hitting the shelves later this summer in 2023.

Other members have been encouraged to publish their own books to see what is available from them click here: Whittlesey Wordsmiths Books

You may notice A book title on the page Killing Time in Cambridge, with the help and encouragement of the group I have completed this my first novel.

I recently published a collection of short stories written by a relative (distant), George Holmes and myself. Most of these stories have appeared in Whittlesey Wordsmiths collections but if you haven’t read all the collections then all of ours are in this book.

12 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Hilary on July 7, 2020 at 3:35 pm

    Hi Phil
    Are you the fenlandphil who has set up a family tree for Mabel Ewer born St Albans 1909 and died in 1987 in Attleborough ?


  2. Posted by Hilary on July 7, 2020 at 4:21 pm

    Hi Phil
    Are you the fenlandphil who set up the family tree on Ancestry for Mabel Ewer
    Born St Albans 1909 died Attleborough 1987. Please contact me hgashby@hotmail.co.uk
    I have a book presented to Mabel at school in 1921 that I would like to return
    to the family
    Thank you


  3. Posted by alexcraigie on January 19, 2021 at 12:28 pm

    Hi Phil. You liked a comment I made on a post about how to get reviews. I used to live in Histon, moved to Soham, went to school in Ely, my grandparents lived in Thorney, and my husband and I were married in Cambridge. As a fenland girl, my ‘house’ at school was Etheldreda, I made the mistake of checking out your book on Amazon. My second mistake was reading the first pages. I now have to buy your book to see what happens next. Great hook! Trish (aka Alex Craigie)


  4. Posted by alexcraigie on January 19, 2021 at 7:29 pm

    You may have a few problems dropping your book off with my grandparents – I’m nearly 70 and they moved onto more celestial heights a while ago! Also, I live in a village near Pembroke in south west Wales now – about as far west as you can go. I’m on the shielding list and haven’t left the house and garden since February when our daughters realised how dangerous things were getting and put us into quarantine.
    I do appreciate the kind offer and would have been delighted to accept it had things been different.
    Looking forward to seeing what happens to poor old Arnold.
    PS A friend of mine in Cambridge knew Sid Barratt (and visited him in hospital after the drugs had wreaked havoc with his mind). I saw Pink Floyd live in the Union Cellars in Cambridge performing in front of one of those psychedelic bubble backdrops. I’m pretty certain Arnold Layne was one of the numbers. Those were the days. Now I listen to Radio 4…


    • Thanks, Trish, it was only after I hit the send button that I saw “lived in Thorney.” Arnold Layne was from memory the first Pink Floyd hit. I never got to see them live but did see Fleetwood Mac with Peter Green locally at Ramsey. I too am nearly seventy, later this year in fact. I really hope you enjoy the book and thank you for buying it. How do you find Pembrokeshire after the fens?
      Radio4 for me too when I listen to the radio or Classic FM but I don’t do much radio or tv.


      • Posted by alexcraigie on August 17, 2021 at 9:06 am

        I’ve been doing some email maintenance and it looks as if I didn’t reply to this email…
        Anyway, just wanted to let you know that I loved your book and wrote a review under the name MacTrish. I used the pseudonym Alex Craigie when I first started writing and then Goodreads wouldn’t recognise the real me. I also posted a review on Goodreads for you.
        Hope all’s well and you’re working on another tale or two!

  5. Thank you, Trish. I have seen the review on Goodreads, it is very kind of you. I am working on another novel at the moment, not a sequel to Killing Time in Cambridge but still set in the Fens. I have managed a few short stories, two of which are going to be included in our writing groups Christmas collections. We are just finishing off the cover designs at the moment. Are you writing at the moment?
    I have just ordered copies of your novels from Amazon.


  6. Posted by Keith Oakes on April 25, 2022 at 7:26 pm

    Are you the Fenlandphil who set up a family tree for Oakes?


    • I am sorry, Keith. It wasn’t I who set up a family tree for Oakes, it seems that are at least three of us Fenlandphils in existence. A far more popular name than I would have thought.
      I haven’t found any Oakes in my family tree so far, my surname is Cumberland.


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