Tales of a London Poacher

Cleve Edmonston


Hi, and thank you for looking into my Web site. The thing that prompted me to write, Tales of a London Poacher, was simply to create a log, a record of some of the things that I got up to as a lad living in the East End of London for the sole reason for passing it onto my children and their children and even their children in years to come after I am no longer around.

This came from the fact that my dad died in my arms at the age of 66 in 1986 and after his death, I heard things about him and what he had got up to during his time in the British Army, which he could now neither confirm nor deny.

I knew that he lied about his age and had joined the army two years before he legally should have, as he had a love of horses and so enlisted in the 16th/5th Lancers and was posted to India.

He then, with a friend, volunteered for Commando training back in England and was selected to destroy bridges in France as he was a very good swimmer.

I then heard that he did undercover work for the Army and was posted to Scarborough, where he had to watch the comings and goings of certain people on the docks and where he used to live and travel back to London wearing civilian clothes and not a uniform as most others did then; and that is where the trail goes cold as they say, and with my dad now dead and my aunt (his nearest eldest sister) not well enough to ask anymore of, I am at a loss to find out any more information.

Getting back to the book, I never intended it for publication, but just as a personal record and it was my son, Cheynne (Shane) that suggested it good enough for possible publication. In looking up on the Internet, publishers that might be interested, I found Coch-y-Bonddu Books of Mid-Wales and the publisher, Paul Morgan. I sent him an unsolicited e-mail and two chapters and sat back and waited. I heard nothing for about a fortnight and then had a reply requesting two more chapters. Again I heard nothing for a couple of weeks and then came an e-mail asking me for the whole book!

It was at this time, I started to get quite excited even at the prospect someone actually wanted to read the book.

The call finally came with Paul Morgan asking me if I would like the Coch-y-Bonddu to publish and if so, a contract would be put in the post?

And the rest, as they say, is history!

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