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Watermill lunch with author

PUBLISHED: 15:06 06 March 2013 | UPDATED: 21:03 05 April 2013

Watermill lunch with author

Watermill lunch with author

Meet author Anne de Courcy at the Watermill Book Club

THE FISHING FLEET

Husband-Hunting in the Raj

by Anne de Courcy

Tuesday. 19 March at 1.30pm


From the late 19th century, when the Raj was at its height, many of Britains best and brightest young men went out to India to work as administrators, soldiers and businessmen. With the advent of steam travel and the opening of the Suez Canal, countless young women, suffering at the lack of eligible men in Britain, followed in their wake, their undeclared goal was simply to find a husband. They were known as the Fishing Fleet, and this book is their story, hitherto untold.

By the early 20th century, a hectic social scene was in place, with dances, parties, amateur theatricals, picnics, tennis tournaments, cinemas, gymkhanas with perhaps a tiger shoot and a glittering dinner at a rajas palace thrown in. Romances were conducted at alarming speed and marriages were frequent. But after the honeymoon life often changed dramatically: whisked off to a remote outpost with few other Europeans for company and where constant vigilance was required to guard against disease, they found it a far cry from the social whirlwind of their first arrival. Anne de Courcys sparkling narrative is enriched by a wealth of first-hand sources - unpublished memoirs, letters and diaries rescued from attics - which bring this forgotten era vividly to life.

Anne de Courcy , is a well-known writer and journalist, whose books include The English in Love; 1939: The Last Season (reissued 2003), Society's Queen (reissued 2004), The Viceroy's Daughters (2000), Diana Mosley (2003), Debs at War (2005) and Snowdon (2008).


Anne de Courcy - Tuesday 19 March at 1.30pm

The Watermill Theatre, Bagnor, Newbury RG20 8AE

Lunch is available from 12 noon, to book please call the box office.

Books will be available at the event: paperback 7.99 & hardback 20

Tickets 5 from the Box Office at 01635 46044 or online at www.watermill.org.uk

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