A History of Woking, by Alan Crosby
Published by Phillimore in 2003, 210. Large Hardback with Dust Jacket (N3432)
Brand New Book
This book is a fascinating pictorial history of the Surrey town of Woking
Woking, the largest town in Surrey, has a remarkable, indeed fascinating, history. Uniquely among European towns, it owes its modern origins to a cemetery company, which exploited the potential of an abundance of cheap land within easy reach of London (hard to believe though that might now be) to promote speculative buildings around a railway station in the midst of an empty heath. Its eccentric development continued as the location of two convict prisons, a huge lunatic asylum, Britain’s first crematorium, a retirement home for actors and actresses, the first purpose-built mosque in Western Europe and an Oriental Institute which almost became a university. To the casual observer in the 20th century the town seemed the archetypal dormitory suburb, but appearances can be deceptive.
Woking’s recorded history goes back more than thirteen centuries, to the days when Surrey was a kingdom in its own right and a monastery was founded here, next to the tranquil waters of the River Wey. The first full account of the story of his home town was written in 1982 by Alan Crosby. A bestseller, it established itself not only as the definitive work on Woking but also as one of the finest town histories published in the 1980s. Now, over twenty years later, Dr Crosby has fully rewritten his famous book, with many new and hitherto unpublished illustrations, adding plenty of extra details of Woking’s past and bringing the story right up-to-date. It is a story superbly told and magnificently illustrated, building on the solid strengths of the previous book but, in reality, an entirely new work.
Illustrated throughout with lots of black and white photographs, drawings and maps, this book will undoubtedly delight anyone with an interest in the history of the Surrey town, it's people and the local area.......