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This is a new book by local author Ray Gibbs, which I have edited and typeset to help him self-publish it. Ray has written several books over the years, most notably ‘The Legendary XII Hides of Glastonbury’ which I quoted from extensively in my own book ‘The River’ about the River Brue. I was very pleased to meet him a few months ago, and to get involved in this project, which is the publication of his latest and probably his last book. 

Islands of the Brue cover for website

Ray Gibbs was born and bred in rural Somerset, where his family goes back generations – in the landscape of the sacred islands of the XII Hides of Glastonbury. Although his research includes reading a number of books from the library, he is not an academic. His history is based on his own archaeological discoveries, and on his knowledge of tales that have been passed down locally through the generations. 

This provides a unique heritage, presented here as a contrast to the stories that have emerged from the ‘official’ historians of Glastonbury Abbey, and more recently from the university world. 

The result is an intriguing – and important – re-telling of well-known themes such as the ‘Old Church’ on what became the site of Glastonbury Abbey, the burial of King Arthur, the island chapels dotted along the pre- medieval route of the River Brue, and Celtic traditions going back to Roman times and even before. 

All this is rooted in Ray’s lifelong practice of walking over the land in the area around his home. 

 Copies available here from this website, for £10 including postage.

The Latest From Unique Publications

The Fourth Point front cover revised 1

“Loved reading this book which is radical, thought-provoking and funny … The book offers up a perfect slice of Glastonbury life, disrupted by Covid lockdowns. There is a panoply of Glastonbury characters, as well as climate actvist meetings, wild stories from the 1970s seen through the lens of Brazilian writer Antonio Bivar, the sacred landscape of the 12 Hides of Glastonbury, Five Rhythms dance; and above all connection to the river.”
The Oracle magazine, Glastonbury

This is Bruce Garrard’s fourth book about the River Brue and related matters. The ‘River Brue Rehabilitation Board’ was open in Glastonbury for 18 months, from November 2019 to May 2021. This book grew out of it. It’s about the river, and lots of other things too – whatever seemed worth noting down that was interesting during that time. Some of it you will probably remember.

The title is to do with Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee’s Four Point Plan. What can we do about the state of the world? We can do whatever grows out of following the first three points, which are Witnessing, Grieving and Prayer. The details will be different and particular for each one of us. If we listen to the Earth until She tells us what it is for us to do, then the Earth can organise Her own healing. She does, after all, know better than us.

See full details of the book.