[From Ben Brierley's Journal, 1869]


These two letters are included for amusement - they were originally published in 1869 (and also reprinted by Abel Heywood c. 1870).

Ben Brierley

Ben Brierley, 1825-1896, was one of those 19th century Lancashire authors who used the dialect of the cotton towns around Manchester - in his case Failsworth - together with the droll sense of humour common in Lancashire.

The Island oriented its tourist trade towards the industrial working class of Lancashire and Yorkshire whose Wakes weeks allowed them to take a week long holiday, usually in Douglas. The setting of the story in Port Erin and at the somewhat more up market Falcon's Nest reflects a more middle class family holiday - the choice of the Falcon's Nest probably reflects some commercial inducement by the go-ahead proprietor who had also commisioned the better known Lancashire author Edwin Waugh to write a tourist guide to the area, which also promoted his hotel.

Falcon's Nest Port Erin
Falcon's Nest (1990's)

The hotel was designed by Arthur Holme and built by James Costain in 1859/60 on the site of the former Queen's Arms. Leech's guide of 1861 has Falcon’s Nest, and Port Erin Castle Hotel, Mrs. A. Clugston, though by 1863 both were described as run by a Mr. John Geary. In 1881 the hotel was run by Mrs Ellen Trustrum nee Kissack (widow of George) and son George Lucas - an advert of 1881/2 stated:

The proprietors have lately taken on lease 'The Rest' the marine residence of the late W. Milner Esq. The house stands within its own grounds contiguous to the Falcon's Nest, and has been converted into a family boarding house ..

George Trustrum, snr, would appear to have been associated with the York Hotel in Douglas in the mid 1850's as a brass pass token 'TRUSTRUM YORK HOTEL DOUGLAS' is described in Clay's Currency though by 1863 described as Trustrum George, gentleman, Brisbane street Douglas (buried Braddan 7 Nov 1878 age 53, his widow buried Braddan 17 Aug 1883 age 56).


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Any comments, errors or omissions gratefully received The Editor
HTML Transcription © F.Coakley , 2006