The Hangmans Gate


SKU paperback Category

175 in stock


By Martin Williams

ISBN: 978-1-84991-657-8
Published: 2011
Pages: 150
Key Themes: mental health, fiction, drama, retirement


The Hangmans Gate is another piece of fiction following on from the publication of the Pearl Divers Saliva. It is set in 1950s in the fictional town of Ledback and follows the history of Alan Butcher as he is d -mobbed after his National Service. It soon becomes obvious that Alan has serious psychiatric issues and finds that his chosen route in life is easily thwarted.

About the Author

Martin Williams was born on the 4th December 1960 in Southampton. Particularly in his early years his family moved around a lot but finally he settled in Bristol where he took his exams at Bristol Grammar School.

At the age of twenty one Martin was diagnosed as suffering from schizophrenia and the next twenty years were spend in and out of hospital but at the turn of the century he had a major breakthrough when using a new medication completely transformed his life.

Following that he attended Studio Upstairs in Bristol, a therapeutic Arts Community and began writing seriously.

Book Extract

Alan Butcher was a sales rep. He had been a sales rep for no more than a few months. As an occupation it might not have exactly been his first choice but all things being equal it brought home his pay. Further more he did not mind the driving, of which there was a fair bit, nor did he dislike the selling side, perhaps the best part was that he qualified for a van, a van that he could use at his leisure when he was not on business.

He had done his National Service not that long after the War had ended, indeed nineteen forty nine. Perhaps unsurprisingly, as those who knew Alan well may have thought, he had stayed on after his compulsory two years. As Alan may have seen it there was no reason why he should not go chasing round the country in a Land Rover. That and the option of three square meals a day certainly had its attractions. With a promotion to corporal and a chance to dish out some of the discipline as well as a few extra quid in his pocket he had looked well set. But that was it. He had woken up one morning asked to see the C.O. and with in a month he was back in Civvy street.

Had he thought it through he would have done well to save a few pounds towards that day, as it was he was going to have to manage on no more than a months pay. There was nothing very different about the day Alan left the Army or indeed that fateful day he had asked to see the C.O. had there been then perhaps it might have made sense. He had turned his Army career around on a sixpence there was no going back there were no regrets to have. He was back in Civvy street and somehow he was just going to have to cut it.

With the few pounds Alan had in his pocket he had a selection of priorities of which the first was to find some lodgings. He had long since decided that he would at least offer to pay for a couple of weeks in advance, that way he could not spend the money else where and he would not be living on tick. That was not unlike Alan scrupulously honest. A second priority may very well have been some clothing, a decent suit and something to wear at the weekends would be fairly high on his list.

Alan had it in mind that as likely as not he would find somewhere to lodge and some work in one of the towns many hostelries. That having been said something took him to Milsom Street or more accurately a couple of blocks away.


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