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South Lopham man behind local phrase

PUBLISHED: 08:22 27 March 2009 | UPDATED: 11:00 12 July 2010

After four years of research and writing, a local journalist has just self-published her own first non-fiction book.

After four years of research and writing, a local journalist has just self-published

her own first non-fiction book.

"I set out to climb a hill and found myself scaling Mt. Everest with no experience and

without oxygen," said Penny Young of South Lopham.

Her book tracks the 30-year relationship between two leading early 19th century radical reformers, William Cobbett and Henry Hunt, who fought for justice, human rights and a reformed parliament. Both went to prison for their beliefs.

Two Cocks on the Dunghill - William Cobbett and Henry Hunt: their friendship, feuds and fights is a story about two extraordinary men in the run up to the Great Reform Act of 1832. It is a tale of love, passion and scandal. It is also about the courage of individuals against an oppressive state and the triumph of determination in adversity.

Cobbett himself was a frequent visitor to Norfolk and Suffolk and coined the phrase "a fine city" for Norwich. The research linking both Cobbett and Hunt is new. Penny also unearthed previously undiscovered letters in the Nuffield in Oxford.

"All the biographers missed the story - and the evidence. It's beginner's luck," she says.

Penny Young's book is on sale in Church Street Books in Diss.


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