Dovecote Press: Small is Successful

Ann Hills looks at history at the local level in Dorset

The Dovecote Press had its origins amid musty lace and bric-a-brac in Dorset Museums fifteen years ago. David Burnett found a rich vein of old photographs lying uncatalogued and undervalued. The result was the first county collection of such photographs – A Dorset Camera: 1855-1914. 'Because of Dorset's size and variety of landscapes the book seemed to encapsulate Victorian life in rural England', says the author-publisher.

Today, working alone in a refurbished 1820s barn once filled with doves near Wimborne Minster, David Burnett has prayed that a publisher concentrating on local history can be a winner. He has fifty titles with sixteen more coming this year: half a million books have been printed.

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