> Skip to content
  • Published: 15 July 2006
  • ISBN: 9780552551199
  • Imprint: Corgi
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 544
  • RRP: $19.99

Margrave Of The Marshes



The autobiography of a legend, completed by the woman who knew him best

Despite the number of claims in publishers blurbs, not many people actually achieve the status of legend in their own lifetime. Fewer still actually deserve that status. John Peel is the exception which proves that rule, a Great Briton whose contribution to British culture is undeniable, without whom popular culture would never have become popular. Beloved by millions – whether for his unstinting championing of musical talent on Radio 1 or for his wildly popular Radio 4 show Home Truths – this is the astonishing book he began to write before his untimely death in October 2004, completed by the woman who knew him best, his wife Sheila.
The first half of the book, written by John, describes with characteristic humour his early life, from child to man, including his school days and National Service. You can hear the unique Peel voice in every sentence - rarely, if ever, before has a voice been so successfully transferred to paper. The second section, written by Peel's wife and soulmate of many years, Sheila Ravenscroft, gives us an intimate portrait of the man and his music, and the highs and the lows of everyday life at Peel Acres.
The completion of this book has been a labour of love for John's family and their passion has paid off. It's every bit as extraordinary as the man himself and a fitting tribute to a bona fide legend.

  • Published: 15 July 2006
  • ISBN: 9780552551199
  • Imprint: Corgi
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 544
  • RRP: $19.99

About the authors

John Peel

John Peel was born the day before the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939. His 38-year career as a radio DJ is the stuff of legend and the bands he went on to discover too numerous to mention, though David Bowie, Roxy Music, T Rex, Genesis, Joy Division, New Order, The Smiths, Radiohead and the White Stripes would do as a start. He lived in Suffolk with his wife Sheila and their children William, Thomas, Alexandra and Florence, plus various dogs and cats, until his death in October 2004.

John Ravenscroft

John Peel was born the day before the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939. His 38-year career as a radio DJ is the stuff of legend and the bands he went on to discover too numerous to mention, though David Bowie, Roxy Music, T Rex, Genesis, Joy Division, New Order, The Smiths, Radiohead and the White Stripes would do as a start. He lived in Suffolk with his wife Sheila and their children William, Thomas, Alexandra and Florence, plus various dogs and cats, until his death in October 2004.

Alexandra Ravenscroft

John Peel was born the day before the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939. His 38-year career as a radio DJ is the stuff of legend and the bands he went on to discover too numerous to mention, though David Bowie, Roxy Music, T Rex, Genesis, Joy Division, New Order, The Smiths, Radiohead and the White Stripes would do as a start. He lived in Suffolk with his wife Sheila and their children William, Thomas, Alexandra and Florence, plus various dogs and cats, until his death in October 2004.

Florence Ravenscroft

John Peel was born the day before the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939. His 38-year career as a radio DJ is the stuff of legend and the bands he went on to discover too numerous to mention, though David Bowie, Roxy Music, T Rex, Genesis, Joy Division, New Order, The Smiths, Radiohead and the White Stripes would do as a start. He lived in Suffolk with his wife Sheila and their children William, Thomas, Alexandra and Florence, plus various dogs and cats, until his death in October 2004.

Sheila Ravenscroft

Sheila Ravenscroft and John Peel were married in 1974. They lived in Suffolk with their four children - William, Alexandra, Thomas and Florence.

Thomas Ravenscroft

John Peel was born the day before the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939. His 38-year career as a radio DJ is the stuff of legend and the bands he went on to discover too numerous to mention, though David Bowie, Roxy Music, T Rex, Genesis, Joy Division, New Order, The Smiths, Radiohead and the White Stripes would do as a start. He lived in Suffolk with his wife Sheila and their children William, Thomas, Alexandra and Florence, plus various dogs and cats, until his death in October 2004.

William Ravenscroft

John Peel was born the day before the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939. His 38-year career as a radio DJ is the stuff of legend and the bands he went on to discover too numerous to mention, though David Bowie, Roxy Music, T Rex, Genesis, Joy Division, New Order, The Smiths, Radiohead and the White Stripes would do as a start. He lived in Suffolk with his wife Sheila and their children William, Thomas, Alexandra and Florence, plus various dogs and cats, until his death in October 2004.

Praise for Margrave Of The Marshes

As with the man himself ... there's the surprising, the cosy ... and the fascinating.

GQ

A rich and technicolor life... The joy of this book comes from something more than spiky anecdotage, delicious though it is... the evocation of an age is so sharp

The Times

... Tender and acute ... underlines the one truth that Peel understood better than anyone ... [what] really mattered was the music.

Independent on Sunday

Sparkling with the warmth and dry wit that made Peel nothing short of a national treasure, it's a timely reminder of a man who crossed the radio divides

Daily Mail

Arguably one of the most important radio broadcasters of the twentieth century... The book bounds through the decades and the characters that populate them with Peel's trademark dry humour

Guardian

It's like listening to the story of a much missed friend ...

Radio Times

... An honest and intelligent book.

Independent

Pure Peel...This magnificent book is the real thing...Essential reading

Sunday Times

Related titles