Penzance the Biography

by Michael Sagar-Fenton


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Explore Penzance’s fascinating characters and history

About this book:

Whether you have lived here all your life or are just passing through, this is a great read.

Penzance sits in the heart of beautiful Mount’s Bay – the centre of Cornwall’s most westerly region. Penzance: The Biography tells the story of the town, from its earliest times to the 400th anniversary in 2014 of its borough status. It tells of its growth from two small neighbouring villages to its thriving industrial Victorian heyday and beyond, a tale of disaster and success, drama and survival.

Penzance has survived attacks from Celts, Vikings, Saxons, Normans, African corsairs, Spanish galleys, English Parliamentary troops and Second World War bombing. Its fortunes have rested upon tin mining, shipping and tourism among a wealth of other industries, including, of course, smuggling.

Famous characters’ stories are revealed: its first ‘founder’, Alice de Lisle; the Pretender, Perkin Warbeck; the pioneer of modern chemistry, Humphry Davy; the father of Methodism, John Wesley; and others from all strands of society who have trodden Penzance’s streets. Herein lies a rich pageant of history that created the town and its ongoing story.

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