I read with interest the page on ‘Money at the root of evil’ (Halifax Courier, Friday, May 12) re Benjamin Myers’ novel about the Cragg Vale Coiners though it is already well known in more than ‘a small corner of West Yorkshire’ and the ‘dusty old book’ he came across might well be ‘Clip a Bright Guinea’ by local author John Marsh, which had a very wide readership.
From being a teenager John was a prolific writer, using various pseudonyms, and he was a founder member in 1926 of the Halifax Authors’ Circle along with their president, Dr Phyllis Bentley, where local writers would meet at Spring Hall Mansion in Halifax to discuss their work. Sadly the group was disbanded in June 1989 to make way for the Northern Ballet, who would occupy the building.
However, I sincerely wish Mr Myers every success with his new novel and for again bringing this fascinating story to the attention of a younger generation, both locally and nationally.
I also agree it would make a brilliant (and with our Yorkshire landscape) atmospheric film, especially in black and white as one can imagine the Coiners gathering around the firelight in the pub room, quietly plotting their frauds and forgeries.