Author reflects on life in royal village during wartime
- Credit: ELLEE SEYMOUR
An author and former journalist who lives in Stretham has written a book about life in Wolferton during World War One.
Ellee Seymour's book 'The Royal Station Master’s Daughters' is set in the village on the royal Sandringham estate.
She was inspired to bring the stories of Harry Saward and his family to life after learning about them from his great grandson, Brian Heath, and great niece, Penny Coe.
She said: "I have long been fascinated by the unique station at Wolferton with its plush royal waiting rooms, imagining how it would have been for royals steaming in on their 'palaces on wheels'.
"I wanted to bring these stories to life against the WW1 backdrop and the Sandringham Company’s disappearance in Gallipoli.
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"Harry Saward and his three daughters were in the thick of this tragedy unfolding around them and make the perfect characters to tell this extraordinary story."
Wolferton became famous due to its association with several generations of the royal family, who used the station on their way to Sandringham House.
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It started from 1863 when Prince Edward and Princess Alexandra moved there following their wedding, up until its closure in 1969.
It welcomed royal guests from around Europe, as well as leading political figures of the day.
The series revolves around the three daughters of Harry Saward, who was the Royal Station Master there for forty years from 1884.
Ellee previously wrote The Shop Girls (2014), a true story of life in a ladies department store from 1940s-1960s.
As part of her research, Ellee subscribed to the Eastern Daily Press’ Local Recall.
The paper also published a letter from her asking for families to come forward with their stories of Gallipoli and their lives on the Sandringham estate during World War One.
The book's publisher said: "Ellee is a wonderful writer with a real passion for social history, so I can’t think of anyone better to write about these young women during the early days of WWI."
The first book in the series will publish in ebook in August 2021 with the paperback following in April 2022.