Mrs Hamlyn is the owner of Clovelly at the time in which Barefoot on the Cobbles is set. She is there in the background, impacting upon the lives of those who live on the cobbles. She is both a generous benefactoress and an intimidating member of the upper class, with family connections amongst the social elite of the day.
Christine Louisa Hamlyn Fane was born in 1855, the daughter of Lt. Col. Henry Hamlyn Fane and his wife Susan. She inherited the Clovelly estate in 1884 and married Frederick Gosling five years later; they both took the surname Hamlyn. She was an iconic Lady of the Manor and was responsible for major renovations of the Clovelly cottages. Her annual Christmas gifts to her tenants are mentioned in the local press; haunches of venison were frequently given. It is said that, if she found rubbish on the cobbled street, she would push the offending item with her cane until it reached the nearest door. She would then open the door and tap the litter inside. When she died in 1936, the villagers mourned her passing. As she was childless, the estate passed to her niece Betty.
‘The diminutive figure of Mrs Hamlyn appeared, her ebony cane scratching on the gravel path as she led her guests towards the ivy-clad church.’
Barefoot on the Cobbles will be published on 17 November 2018. More information about the novel can be found here. Copies will be available at various events in the weeks following the launch or can be pre-ordered from Blue Poppy Publishing or the author.