A small boy was fascinated in the 1960s by the opening title sequence of images to ‘Inheritance’, a television series that followed the fortunes of a family over a span of around three hundred years. The first illustration was of a small seventeenth century village set amidst a rural landscape. Gradually the sequence developed until the town became a modern industrial metropolis. That lad has since been replaced by a more grown up version and is now a local history and numismatic author, genres that are non-fiction – or should be.
This interactive talk highlights how misrepresentation has been preferred to any attention to historical detail in some local history texts. This situation, sometimes comical, occasionally simply deceitful, may be troublesome for authors who use this material, including fiction writers. Ways to help recognise and overcome these fantasies will be introduced. The more entertaining aspects will be especially promoted.