Tag: Norwich City Council

Two Sheriffs meet in Wymondham

Last evening, 22nd September 2016, I visited a meeting of the Wymondham Heritage Society, in the same hall where I spoke about Escaping Hitler some months ago. I was there to listen to former Sheriff of Norwich William Armstrong. At my side was Joe Stirling, 91 year old subject of my biography and also a former Sheriff of Norwich from 1975.  Members of the Society, who were unaware we planned to join them, were most welcoming and delighted to meet Joe in person.  We listened to William’s address, enjoying his historical outline of the role and his anecdotal stories from his year as Sheriff from 2014-15.

This was more than just a social night out – William was Sheriff alongside Lord Mayor Judith Lubbock, the fifteenth female Lord Mayor of Norwich, who will have her own chapter in my new book My Lady Lord Mayor: the Seventeen Female Lord Mayors of Norwich 1923-2017.  This will be published by Pen and Sword Books in February 2018.  I was hoping for some insight into Judith as Lord Mayor and certainly William mentioned a number of events that they shared during that civic year.  If anyone is interested in following my progress with the new book, there is a blog at myladylordmayor.com along with an accompanying Facebook page.  You’d be most welcome as a new follower!

Photos here show William and Judith attending a Chinese New Year event on Riverside in the City in February 2015, alongside Joe and his wife Jean on the day Joe was inaugurated as Sheriff in May 1975. Same robe, same chain, different hat!  William told us that the hat was too small for his head so Norwich City Council bought him a new one!

 

Escaping Hitler Presentation at Mulbarton Words Festival June 2016

I am indebted to Terence Burchell from Mulbarton near Norwich for this video of me speaking to a lovely audience at Hanover Gardens, Mulbarton in June this year, as part of the Mulbarton Words Festival.  I hope some of you will take 30 minutes of your lives to watch as I describe the early life of Joe Stirling, Kindertransport boy and former Sheriff of Norwich, as well as a little about how my debut biography came to be published by Pen and Sword Books in January.  In January 2017 this remarkable man’s story will be available even more widely when Skyhorse Publishing of New York publish and distribute my book to the book lovers of the U.S.A.  To purchase a signed copy directly from me take a look at the menu on this WordPress blog to find my contact details.  Many thanks….

SIX MONTHS ANNIVERSARY OF PUBLICATION OF ESCAPING HITLER

 

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SIX MONTHS AGO today, 5th January 2016, my debut biography Escaping Hitler (foreword by Shirley Williams) was published by Pen and Sword Books.  I will never forget the incredible moment when my first 200 copies arrived in six boxes at my house! And when I first presented Joe Stirling with his personal copy!  Since that date so much has happened to me and to the book that I felt this was an appropriate moment to share the phenomonal achievements so far.

Over 30 published articles and reviews including local Archant publications, the Journal from the Association of Jewish Refugees, Lion Magazine and the Rhein Zeitung, regional newspaper for the Rhineland around Koblenz.

Grand official launch at Jarrold Department Store in Norwich on 4th February with 220 people in the audience.  We signed over 50 books that night!

Appeared in Jarrold’s National Bestsellers lists for five weeks running, including No.1 during week of February 13th 2016!

29 Public and private talks and powerpoint presentations including two in Germany (Koblenz Federal Archive and the village of Nickenich).  Seven more in the diary between now and July 2017.  More welcomed!

Escaping Hitler appears in Norfolk Libraries. Waiting lists build up to borrow copies.

403 followers on Facebook and 112 on Twitter

542 copies sold directly from me and Joe, 297 of them signed and sold at our speaking engagements.

From the initial 1300 print run Pen and Sword is now down to the final 200 in the warehouse.  Plans for a further hardback run and a little later for a softback.

In March this year New York Publisher Skyhorse bought the option to publish and distribute Escaping Hitler onto the U.S. market. Projected date for this is January 3rd 2017. I have recently received my Authors Questionnaire in order for us to work together on a marketing plan.  (This was beyond my wildest expectations!)

Escaping Hitler entered for two major Book  Awards – watch this space!

And finally, as a result of the marketing successes so far, I am now contracted to Pen and Sword for a second biographical book: My Lady Lord Mayor: The Seventeen Female Lord Mayor of Norwich 1923-2017.  Estimated publication end 2017/early 2018.

So more work ahead!!

My sincere thanks to everyone who follows this blog, my Facebook page and my Twitter feed, and especially those who have already bought and read the book!  Without your support the statistics would not look nearly as good!

Don’t forget – by clicking on the menu at the top of this page you will find full details of how to order your personally signed copy directly from me. The book makes a great gift!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Norwich Civic Christmas Tree 1977

On this weekend before Christmas I offer you this photograph from December 1977.  One of Joe Stirling’s projects, two years following his time as Sheriff of Norwich, was NOAH, the Norwich Organisation for Active Help.  At Christmas 1977 he was chairman of NOAH and can be seen on the very far right of the photograph in the spectacles.  The Lord Mayor of Norwich Ralph Roe (centre) is presenting a cheque to the president of NOAH, Jessie Griffiths, who had served as  Lord Mayor in 1969-70. The money was donated to NOAH from the Queen’s Silver Jubilee appeal and this magnificent civic Christmas tree is stood outside Norwich City Council.  My thanks to Voluntary Norfolk for the photograph.

HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO ALL MY FOLLOWERS.  Not long now until publication of Escaping Hitler: A Jewish Boy’s Quest for Freedom and His Future, the official biography of Joe Stirling.

 

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Youtube Footage showing Joe Stirling speaking to Norwich Sunday Assembly July 2015

This piece of footage from Norwich Sunday Assembly shows Joe Stirling, the hero of my biography Escaping Hitler, talking recently to a packed hall about his early life.  At 90 years old he is still able to hold an audience in the palm of his hand. The book, to be published in January 2016 by Pen and Sword Books, will give all this information and so much more, including anecdotal stories from those who were and still are close to him.  The book covers nine decades of this man’s wonderful life from his childhood in Nazi Germany to his arrival in England on the Kindertransport, his education and life with two foster families, joining the British Army, meeting his wife, living in Attleborough, joining the Labour Party, working with Shirley Williams on her first by-election, taking high office in Lions International, setting up his own pioneering travel company Stirling Holidays, bringing up four children, travelling the world, becoming Sheriff of Norwich and finally discovering the fate of his parents.   Keep an eye on this blog for more information about publication dates, signings and how to buy your own signed copy….