Minety printer's memories in print

Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard: Robin Walker with his book of family memories Robin Walker with his book of family memories

SOME of Minety’s best known characters from the past feature in a new book written by a former resident.

Grandad, Minety and Me tells the life and times of the Taylor family who started and ran E E Taylor and Sons printing works for 116 years before it closed in 2000.

Robin Walker, who spent 50 years of his adult life working for the firm, has gathered a collection of local anecdotes for the book.

“When I packed up work people kept saying to me why don’t you put down all the things you know about the village in a book,” he told the Standard. “So I started writing.”

He explained that although the business had been part of the family for so many years, his younger relatives had little idea about what had gone on.

“It was done so the family would know how, what and why.”

Stories include his grandfather Edward, who took on and beat the might of Great Western Railways in the 1920s when they wanted to close Minety railway station. The court hearing was held in Malmesbury Town Hall and on the bench was Geoffrey Lawrence, who went on to become Lord Chief Justice and led the British judicial team at the Nuremburg trials after the Second World War.

The family were also great supporters of St Leonard’s Parish Church. “At one stage there were seven Taylors singing in the choir,” he said.

The printing works has now gone, replaced by houses, but it was a major part of the printing industry in the area with family members not only working for the family firm, but taking their typesetting skills elsewhere, including the Standard’s former printing hall in Cirencester.

Mr Walker, now 79, was the last to run the firm. When it closed down he retired and moved to Ashton Keynes.

His books is available by calling 01285 861375.

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