Such a fun book! ‘A Remarkable Story of the National Trust Gangsters’ as it says on the cover.
This just could not happen today. A secret group of people, even with the best of intentions, bursting into meetings in disguise and leaving unidentified packages would not be tolerated. The world has changed.
The book tells the story of a simpler time, but a time which saw a new awareness of the significance of the past and a passion to preserve it.
Much of the history of Ferguson’s Gang was kept secret, long after their exploits had ended. At the end of the day, they were a group of like-minded friends who were able to make a difference. What this book also highlights, though, possibly without intending to, is the way that the ‘gang’ filled a space in the lives of many of its members. Indeed, as individuals began to find love and alternative pleasures, they dropped out.
In many ways they preserved the innocence of childhood with their nicknames and ‘stunts’, almost like a group of teenagers with a secret den, but in the 1930s and ‘40s their efforts ensured that historic places from the Isle of Wight to Cornwall were available for future generations to enjoy.
I loved reading about Ferguson’s Gang.