Christmas music

Captain Cobbler would like to share a little Christmas Music with readers and potential readers which was linked to him by a modern cousin living in Vancouver Canada – it is sung by the Capilano University Choir – Enjoy!!

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Extracts from the novel

If you are visiting the website and wish to read a couple of brief excerpts from the novel – you can either click on “Falling from Grace”, under ‘Categories’  at the side or “Christmas 1535” on the picture above – either will take you to a brief extract… then, if you have enjoyed the extract, you can quickly visit or to buy the book!!

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History for foodies – Happy Christmas

Just a very quick blog to redirect FOODIES to a delicious blog…


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Christmas Advertising campaign


In order to try and boost sales I am doing an advertising campaign in Lincolnshire in the first instance, in the Lincolnshire Echo and Target Series, the Louth Leader and related papers and the Newark Advertiser and related papers.

There will also be ads appearing on the websites for the Lincs Echo and the Newark Advertiser

I hope it will all work to begin to sell the books and e-books – so if you are looking for a Christmas present for someone you know – have a look at the options available at or take yourself to one of the bookshops mentioned to buy a signed copy of the book.

Let me know what you think and/or put a review onto the Amazon site.

Go straight to Amazon…



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Radio Interview Sep 2013

If I can get the technology to work this post should contain a radio interview I made on 23rd September 2013when I went to England to launch my novel. Since I have yet to master the audio technology just to provide the interview itself you will have to enjoy the music as well and the interviewer`s ramblings about red squirrels, all pretty harmless stuff! – Just click on the arrow above and listen – Enjoy!

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Lincolnshire Day – 1st October 2013

The following press release was circulated this evening, relating to Lincolnshire Day, tomorrow, 1st October 2013, which recognises the start of the Lincolnshire Uprising 477 years ago.

It is no coincidence at all that this day will be the launch of my novel Captain Cobbler which tells the story of the Lincolnshire Uprising from start to finish. I shall be doing a book-signing at Wright’s of Louth, between 11am and 1pm, for paper copies of the novel, or you can now buy them at iUniverse site or or other leading online bookshops. The e-book is priced at only $2.99 or £2 which is less than the price of a decent cappuccino! DONT hesitate – get one today.

Captain Cobbler:

The Lincolnshire Uprising1536

A Novel – by Keith M Melton 

Press Release – 1st October 2013 

Celebrating Lincolnshire Day

Locally born author Keith M Melton is celebrating “Lincolnshire day” by signing copies of his novel at Wright’s bookshop in Louth, where the uprising began on Sunday 1st October 1536. Keith’s namesake, Nicholas Melton, a shoemaker in the town of Louth confiscated the keys to the Church of St James in the town, to prevent Commissioners of Thomas Cromwell from stealing the church silverware.

It was a straightforward community protest but it rapidly escalated during the week to become a widespread uprising against the tyranny of the government of King Henry VIII,  and his chancellor, Baron Thomas Cromwell.

Keith has been researching and writing the novel to tell the story of his namesake, for over seven years, since his retirement from Nottingham Trent University, where he was the founding Director of the Institute for Sustainable Development in Business. Keith’s roots are deeply embedded in the county and he can trace his Melton family name back to about 1680 in North Lincolnshire… “but we have not been able to finally fill the gap back to Louth in 1536” Keith said today.

Keith is a member of the social networking site LinkedIn and has created a Group called “Meltons of the world” on the site, with the idea of, perhaps, being able to find the continuing family of Nicholas Melton if such exists.

I now have about 100 Meltons linked with me on LinkedIn and none of them are known relatives of mine or Nicholas – but we shall be looking to see if we can find clues to such a link. There are still Meltons living in Louth now – so perhaps some of them may come along and buy a copy of the novel,” Keith added with unbridled optimism.

My namesake, Nicholas Melton, would have been very surprised, I am sure, to know that his actions had been the cause of such local celebration 477 years later!”

The novel will be available, signed by the author, in Wright’s bookshop in Louth, Tim Smith’s bookshop in Horncastle on 3rd of October and in W H Smith in Lincoln on Saturday 5th October. But it is already available on the iUniverse website and from as well as many other online bookshops.

I have also made sure the e-book is easily available at less than the price of a decent cup of cappuccino. It is available for about £2 online because I wanted to make sure that the story was shared with as many people as possible all around the world. It is definitely part of our heritage here in Lincolnshire and is not yet widely known. I hope the novel will change all that for good!”


Previous press releases

Captain Cobbler:

The Lincolnshire Uprising1536

A Novel – by Keith M Melton 

Press Release – 30 Sept 2013 

The Politics of protest?

Former Liberal candidate for Lincoln (1979) and Cleethorpes (1997) in general elections and Lincolnshire(1994) in the European elections – Keith Melton – launches his debut novel this week, 477 years exactly from the date of the original Lincolnshire Uprising in the reign of King Henry VIII. The rebellion was started by the actions of a namesake of the author, a Louth cobbler called Nicholas Melton.

Speaking this week, just before the launch, Keith Melton said that the politics of protest in 1536 were obviously rather different than they are today.

“When I have been standing in elections for the Liberals, it was always possible there might be a bit of shouting or an occasional raised voice – but I don’t think I was ever in serious danger of being carted off to the Tower and hung as a traitor. I know that some of my opponents might have wished for that to happen when I irritated them but, in reality, I was a lot safer than my namesake was in the time of Henry VIII.”

“There was a lot of turbulence in 1536 and Henry was a real tyrant, known for his violence against foes, real or imagined. As well as executing a couple of wives and quite a few fairly close relations, historians believe he probably had something like 50,000 of his subjects executed during his reign. So to lead a protest against his decisions was a pretty brave thing to do!”

Henry’s chancellor, Thomas, Baron Cromwell (he only gained his title in 1536!) had closed over 50 religious houses in Lincolnshire alone that year and the rumours were that he would be coming after the church silverware next. Nicholas Melton and his friends decided enough was enough and, on Sunday 1st October, took the keys to the church from the churchwardens and locked away the silver guarding the Church of St James in Louth day and night.

The protest escalated very quickly that week and before the week was out around 20,000 ‘rebels’ marched on the county town of Lincoln, where Keith Melton fought a rather gentler election in 1979. Rebels came from all over the County where Keith fought the European elections in 1994…

“…So I have a very personal sense of the history of the Lincolnshire Uprising which is why I have so much enjoyed telling the story of it in my new novel. I have this sense of place, I have the personal connection with the name, and I have real empathy for the actions of the rebels as the member of a radical party of protest! I hope this overlap has given the novel a certain something no-one else could have felt as they were writing, so I hope my readers will enjoy reading the story!”


Posted in Captain Cobbler, Louth Church, Rebellion | 1 Comment

Henry VIII – Birthday boy and psychopath

Henry VIII – Birthday boy and psychopath

Well, it was the birthday of Henry VIII the other day, 28th June. He was born in 1491.

By a strange juxtaposition of events I also read, the same day, that some recent research has suggested he would score incredibly highly on the scale of ‘psychopathy’. Perhaps we should not be surprised at this revelation; he has something of a reputation as a tyrant, after all.  So, to be truthful, I have no desire to wish him a happy birthday.

The stories I read were on Sky News ( )  and in the Independent  newspaper ( ). One extract explained that the characteristics shared by psychopaths were:-

  • Machiavellian self-interest, persuasiveness, physical fearlessness, emotional detachment, rebelliousness, feelings of alienation, carefree spontaneity, and coolness under pressure.

Certainly sounds like the Henry we all know!

  • Self-interested, to the extent of changing the religion of a whole country in order to change wives.
  • Persuasive, to the extent of getting the parliament to pass regulations making bastards of the children of two of his discarded wives.
  • Physically fearless enough to keep jousting well into his 40s, when he fell off his horse and knocked himself out.
  • Emotional detachment, to mount a (false?) case for treacherous infidelity against his second wife just after she had miscarried a son.
  • Rebelliousness enough to reject the power of the Pope, who wouldn’t annul his first marriage.
  • Alienated, because the Pope would not annul his first marriage!
  • Carefree and spontaneous – you just have to read the tales of his Christmas parties, with “disguisings”, in which he usually took a personal, often flamboyant, part.
  • Coolness under pressure. Stories from his French campaign 500 years ago in 1513 attest to this quality. Perhaps the most useful of these qualities for a monarch!

In the study, undertaken by Professor Dutton, Henry VIII was the only one, of ten famous people, who scored consistently highly on all the characteristics above. Other members of this illustrious group included Byron, Churchill, Newton and Darwin. Henry scored 174 (or 178 said the Independent) on a scale where dangerous psychopaths would score at least 168 to register as psychopaths. These would include people, such as Moors killer Ian Brady in the UK, or Ted Bundy and other mass-murderers in the USA.

Henry VIII certainly ordered the deaths of a very large number of people during his 38 year reign, including two of his six wives, and quite a few other people who were related to him in some way. Estimates by historians, of the numbers he had had killed, vary between about 50,000 and 72,000. Several hundred of those were despatched following the Lincolnshire Uprising and the subsequent Pilgrimage of Grace, both of which happened towards the end of 1536.

1536 a tumultuous year

1536 was a tumultuous year during the latter part of King Henry’s reign.

To start with, his first wife Catherine of Aragon, from whom he was, by then, divorced, died in January. According to modern medical expertise, she probably died of cancer of the heart, but the doctors who performed her autopsy suggested she was poisoned – but who really knows for sure?

On the very day Catherine was being buried in Peterborough Abbey, Henry’s second wife, Anne Boleyn, miscarried of a male foetus. One possible cause of the miscarriage was that Anne had had a surge of bitter anger when she found one of her ladies in waiting, Jane Seymour, sitting on Henry’s lap. A second possible cause, put forward for the miscarriage, was that she was so worried when Henry fell off his horse and was knocked unconscious. You choose which to believe!

Whatever the cause, the Machiavellian Imperial ambassador to the English court, Eustace Chapuys, was apparently overheard, saying, “She has miscarried of her saviour”. Anne Boleyn had already made an enemy of Thomas , Lord Cromwell, over France and other issues, so it rather seems that Henry and Cromwell may have cooked up a lot of false claims about Anne’s supposed ‘treacherous infidelity’. This gave them an excuse to cut off her head. She was executed on May 19th 1536 and very soon afterwards, on 30th May, Henry VIII married Jane Seymour.

In July of 1536, Henry Fitzroy, bastard son of Henry VIII and Bessie Blount, died, aged only 17. Did he die of natural causes, or might he have been poisoned, as was also rumoured at the time?

In the meantime, throughout the year of 1536, Cromwell, as the newly installed Vicar-General of the Church in England, was busy closing down monasteries and other religious houses at great speed. He was, perhaps, seeking to refill the declining coffers of his master, King Henry VIII.

By September he had already closed more than 50 Houses in Yorkshire and more than 50 in Lincolnshire, as well as smaller numbers in other counties around the kingdom. He had abolished Purgatory, and decreed that around 20 Holy Days should no longer be held for their Saints. So, everyone was obliged to celebrate all these saints on the same day just after Michaelmas. Ordinary folk were clearly upset because this deprived them not only of Holy Days, but also of holidays as well!

Then the rumours began that Cromwell would soon start stealing the silverware from all the rich churches around the country. Some churches responded by selling their silver and converting the riches into less pilferable items. In Hull for example they used the money to buy Yorkstone paving for the town.

In Louth, Lincolnshire, the reaction was different. A shoemaker in the town, one Nicholas Melton, and his friends, all local artisans, persuaded the churchwardens to give up the keys to the church, so that Nicholas could lock the church and guard the treasures against theft by Cromwell’s commissioners. It was a protest that, for various reasons, escalated very quickly and turned into rebellion – according to King Henry VIII, that is…

You can read more about this in the forthcoming novel – Captain Cobbler: The Lincolnshire Uprising 1536

The novel, Captain Cobbler, is due to be published on 1st October 2013 – if you wish to enter the draw for a free copy of the book then… send a TWEET OR EMAIL TO YOUR FRIENDS AND THEN ‘FOLLOW’ THE CAPTAIN COBBLER WEBSITE BLOG (see option to “follow” on RHS of screen) AND I WILL DO THE DRAW END-SEPTEMBER FOR FREE E-BOOK. AT LEAST THREE PRIZES!!

Posted in 1513 england and France at war, Captain Cobbler, Lincolnshire, Tudor Times | 2 Comments