A title from The Old School Press 

Punting to Islip

A narrative poem by Eddie Flintoff, with wood-engravings and linocut by Simon Brett 

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About the book

Out of print

The one thing I remember doing a lot of when up at Cambridge in the late 1960s was punting on the Cam. So Eddie Flintoff's new narrative poem Punting to Islip rang many emotional bells when I first received it from him via Simon Brett, and its poignancy for idyllic days matched mine. Eddie's poem really deserves to be read out loud, having as many sonic qualities as typographic, though I have followed Eddie's proposed layout, adding only a gentle curve to the flow of the river of text. There are many moods and changes of mood that a better typographer than I could have exploited on the page, to echo the changes of pace and tone that would come through in speech. Nevertheless, I think it all still works.

The title page has a linocut and wood engraving pair by Simon Brett picturing the scene as it might have looked to Eddie's eyes in the 1950s; the linocut is printed in a paler colour 'under' the wood engraving. The title page also has a calligraphic title. Click on the thumbnail above to see more. A further wood-engraving makes a fine tail-piece.

The title page of the book

About the edition

The edition consists of 150 copies and is signed by Simon Brett. The text is hand-set in 10pt Monotype Gill Sans and printed on dampened hand-made Japanese kawanaka ivory paper. The 120 copies of the standard edition are bound in a Japanese style: double sheets are folded on the fore-edge and sewn with ribbon between covers of blue hand-made Richard de Bas paper in a landscape format (about 190mm by 230mm). Pages of the poem face each other, verso and recto. The poem is 14pp long. Ordinaries are 33, specials 64.

What others have said about the book

'An evocative narrative poem sympathetically brought to the page; the pictorial title-page is a triumph'

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Copyright Martyn Ould 2023