Shropshire, and it’s stunning countryside, has been the inspiration for many great authors over the years from Charles Dickens to A.E. Housman

Here are a selection of authors either from Shropshire or whom have written about the county…

Charles Darwin (1809 – 1882)

Born in Shrewsbury in Shropshire in 1809, Darwin was an English naturalist, geologist and biologist, best known for his contributions to the science of evolution and author of ‘On the Origin of Species‘.

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Charles Dickens (1812 – 1870)

Having visited Shropshire many times over the years, Dickens wrote about areas in Shropshire and based some of his characters in his greatest novels on Shropshire locals, such as Miss Havisham in ‘Great Expectations’.

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A. E. Housman (1859 – 1920)

Perhaps the poet most closely associated with Shropshire, Housman’s work ‘A Shropshire Lad’, which featured references to the Blue Remembered Hills, is perhaps his most recognised work.

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Kate Innes

Though born in London, Kate Innes now resides in Shropshire soaking up the history and beauty of the county. She has recently written a novel ‘The Errant Hours’ based on real events in the Welsh Marches which is, in part, set around Eaton and South Shropshire.

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Wilfred Owen (1893-1918)

Commonly regarded as the finest war poet of his generation, Owen was born at Plas Wilmot, Oswestry, and spent his childhood and teenage years around Shropshire.

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Ellis Peters (1913 -1995)

Ellis Peters, whose real name was Edith Pargeter, is perhaps Shropshire’s best known modern author. She lived in Telford and is famous for her collection of Medieval whodunits, ‘The Chronicles of Brother Cadfael’. Her novels featuring the detective monk were very popular, with a television series made that serialized some of her novels.

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Malcolm Saville (1901 – 1982)

Though not from Shropshire, Malcolm Saville based a series of children’s books on areas within the county as his children were evacuated to the Shropshire countryside at the outbreak of the 2nd World War and Saville visited as often as he could from London.

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Katherine Swift

Katherine Swift lives in Shropshire and has been a gardening columnist of The Times as well as having written widely in the gardening press. She is also the author of ‘The Morville Hours’, a Sunday Times bestseller.

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Mary Webb (1881 – 1927)

Another famous Shropshire writer, Mary Webb grew up in Shropshire and used many of the towns in her writing, with references to Bishop’s CastleChurch StrettonCraven Arms, Habberley, The Stiperstones, and Long Mynd.

She wrote five novels all of which reflect her devotion and love of Shropshire.

During her life she lived in Much Wenlock, Pontesbury, Shrewsbury and Lyth Hill. Indeed when her novel ‘Gone to Earth’ was made into a film, the location that the producers used was Much Wenlock.

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