A Horse in the Country: Diary of a Year in the Heart of England

Clive Aslet

Clive Aslet, editor of Country Life, lived in Pimlico, London SW1 until January 2000. Then he bought a small cottage in the country near where his horse was stabled at Naseby. This is what happened.

Naseby is the site of the great battle that is supposed to have ended the English Civil War. It’s also typical of a certain type of particularly English countryside: rolling green fields, farmland good and bad, copses of ancient woodland and an ugly dual carriageway. Naseby is also the site of a modern civil war, between country folk born and bred and steeped in the ways of country living, and newly demobbed urbanites in search of, well, of what exactly? Clive Aslet went determined to find out and recorded the results of his year in the country: a delightful blend of local anecdote, historic discovery, character and incident, set against England’s unfolding drama of the countryside: what it is, who is to enjoy it, what it can and should tolerate. One man and his horse in a charming and acutely observed comedy of rural manners: these are Clive Aslet’s rural rides among England’s truculent, turbulent countryfolk.

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