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Old 11-08-2017, 09:17 PM
Vagabond's Avatar
Vagabond Vagabond is offline
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Coquetdale
Posts: 51
Default Rudyard Kipling on Newcastle and Morpeth

In the summer of 1908 poet and novelist Rudyard Kipling paid a visit to friends who had rented Biddlestone Hall in Northumberland for the summer. He stayed one week at Biddlestone, departing the Hall on the 18th August. In a letter to his friends Kipling gives a brief account of his journey from Biddlestone to Newcastle. Not uneventful! Original punctuation retained.

Central Station Hotel , Newcastle-on-Tyne/Tuesday night

It`s all our family painted it - only much worse - Much-much worse!
It smells of soup, tired waiters, flue smoke, engine-oil, unbeaten carpets and Newcastle. The walls are chastely ornamented with Doulton tiles in
various bilious shades and the She Clerk in the office is a Superior person. Altogether civilization after the moors is not alluring.
We had a grey and wetish journey from Rothbury. As we entered the town of Morpeth our right hind tyre went bang - a ferocious noise - and we were hung up for three quarters an hour. The people of Morpeth (may Allah confound them!) are used to seeing cars go through, but apparently, not seeing them stop. All Morpeth immediately forsook all of its business and helped each other to watch Moore mending the tyre.
Anyhow as *Moore said when we got away - "I don`t mind tyre trouble in the country, but I don`t like it in towns." Amen.
So now we are in the Station Hotel. The kids are enjoying biscuits upstairs and trains are prowling about the premises generally. Wer`e going to bed in a few minutes. Our hearts are heavy. We can`t tell you how we rejoiced and delighted in our visit or how much we hate Newcastle -
Our love to you all at Biddlestone.

Ever sincerely,


* Moore: Kipling`s chauffeur.

Last edited by Vagabond; 11-08-2017 at 09:46 PM.
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