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Tuesday, November 10, 2015


An interesting read, particularly for those not familiar with this period of South African history. (Review by Caroline Smart)

England Wants Your Gold is the first of a trilogy by Neville Herrington dealing with the Anglo Boer War.

Herrington is the co-owner of Tekweni Television Productions in Durban and was senior lecturer in the Department of Speech and Drama at the University of Natal (now University of KwaZulu-Natal). He was educated at Penzance Road Primary School in Durban and later at Arcadia Primary School and Christian Brothers' College, Pretoria.

With his wife, Sandra Herrington, he has created numerous environmental, eco-travel and social documentaries for television.

While England Wants Your Gold is an act of fiction, Herrington has drawn from his personal past where his predecessors were much involved in issues of the times. He has mixed this information with historical facts to make what is an interesting read, particularly for those who are not familiar with this period of South African history.

England Wants Your Gold is set against the backdrop of the infamous Jameson Raid that triggered the Anglo-Boer War. The story deals with the experiences of a beautiful young musical hall performer called Brigid O’Meara. When we first meet her, she is in a lonely and unhappy personal space and has to face a difficult decision. A figure from her past comes back to haunt her, determined to wreak revenge for something she has done.

 Her Irish background means she has sympathy for the Boers in their fight against British domination. However, fate – and love – has a way of changing one’s life’s path and she finds herself falling for an Uitlander activist. Her feelings for him are so strong that she cannot refuse his request to help him smuggle weapons into the Transvaal. After all, who would suspect a stunning young woman (whose acting skills are very useful in this process) of travelling with a stash of weapons cunningly concealed in a beautifully decorated trunk.

Then she gets an opportunity to get back on stage in a musical production. Performing gives her a sense of fulfilment but it’s not a permanent contract.  So decisions need to be made about the future.

With his extensive experience in television and the power of the camera to capture nuances of images, Herrington describes situations and characters well. If England Wants Your Gold is anything to go by, the forthcoming two novels should make the basis of a good three-part television series.

The Herringtons recently co-directed a major television documentary titled Jan Smuts – The Flawed Genius which is receiving high accolades on the national markets. This is currently available at Musgrave Adams and VIMEO on Demand.

England Wants Your Gold is published by Tekweni and is available at Adams, Musgrave, for R200. It is also available on Amazon kindle and in hard copy on Amazon from about the middle of November.  Blue Weaver is distributing the book locally. ISBN 978-0-620-67304-4 Caroline Smart