Mole seeks out promised land in Suffolk

SUFFOLK is the promised land - that's the view of the very famous mole in a new novel.The mole in question is the subject of The Wind in the Pylons, a new book written by Gareth Lovett Jones.

SUFFOLK is the promised land - that's the view of the very famous mole in a new novel.

The mole in question is the subject of The Wind in the Pylons, a new book written by Gareth Lovett Jones.

The sequel to Kenneth Grahame's, The Wind in the Willows, it paints a scathing picture of today's countryside.

Mr Jones is a life-long member of Friends of the Earth and a wildlife photographer, as well as a writer, and the novel explores the environmental devastation he has seen in Britain over the years.

In the book Mole escapes from Wyvern Toad's petrochemical company in Berkshire and cycles through East England to 'idyllic' Suffolk where his opinions of the county soon change.

Mole is expecting to find a 'fit bit of turf' to dig a new home but Suffolk's farmers will be pleased to know that he does not find happiness on their land. Mr Jones said: "He doesn't find what he is looking for in Suffolk.

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"The land is not enclosed enough, it's too polluted and he doesn't like the smell."

Although critical of the Suffolk countryside, Mr Jones is a fan of the county.

"I do like Suffolk and think it has some great skies, like nowhere else.

"I just feel that it has been opened up too much."

He believes the old Suffolk landscapes have been destroyed by intensive farming, and added: "Since the fifties hedgerows have been removed, ploughland has increased and the number of chemicals and machines has also increased.

"This has meant a lot of the flowers have been destroyed and the place has become degraded.

"Some of the hedgerow has been put back but the main damage is still

there.

"We've lost 97 per cent of the hay meadows in this country and it really is sad.

"Mole experiences all of this in the novel."

In a rather unconventional sale's pitch, Mr Jones will follow the cycle route set out by Mole in the novel.

He should arrive in Suffolk on Saturday, August 30 when he is planning to visit Long Melford and Sudbury and he is expected to arrive in Needham Market and Stowmarket the following day.

He will also visit Framlingham, Saxmundham, Leiston and Aldeburgh between August 30 and September 3, visiting small, independent bookshops and giving readings of his novel.

He is unsure at the exact timing of the trip as, he says: "I will be following the exact route of Mole in the novel so it is a little difficult to know how long it will take."

The book will be released on October 1 but unlike the original Wind in the Willows, it is not a children's book, as it is largely political - criticising politicians, intensive farmers, fox hunters and corporate bosses.

Anyone who wants to find out more about the book should contact Hilltop Publishing on 01844 238692.

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