Many of my novels take place in the imaginary towns of Strand and Easthope; there are a few villages, a few other towns nearby, all completely fictitious. However, in my last novel, Radwinter which is a genealogical mystery, the ancestors of the main character Thomas Radwinter, do live in, pass through, visit, are born, are married and die in real places. Now in the sequel Thomas is tracing his maternal line, and there are a family of farmers who live in Cambridgeshire; I know whereabouts they lived, but in order to have the sort of information Thomas would have on census returns and parish registers, I need to have some actual place names…so I thought I might use the names of villages which once existed many centuries ago but have no vanished and are only remembered in old books and folk-lore… I might change my mind on this but I have been investigating old vanished villages, and come across quite a few. Some of them have just been subsumed into another nearby village, but some just seem to have been abandoned.
Here’s a list of some I came across:
- Botolph Bridge
- Eynesbury Hardwick
- Sawtry Judith
- Stonea Camp
I wonder which of these I might use… or maybe none, or maybe amalgamate two to create a totally fictional place!
My ebook Radwinter is available here: