Victorian Kenilworth

Welcome to,


the website of

Rookfield  Publications and  Robin D Leach


This website was originally set up to promote my fourth book "Victorian Kenilworth and its People"; it was extended on several occasions in the past, and will be again in the future with further articles and items of historical interest. It is now relaunched in a new format, special thanks to Sam Leach who has made this possible.

Now published --

'Kenilworth People and Places, Volume 2'...

Amongst the subjects included this time is the history of the first 25 years of Kenilworth's Carnival, (please use the link to the left 'Carnival Queens' in the 'People & Places' menu for more details for photographs of all Kenilworth's Carnival Queens)


Also included are house histories of

'Elmdene', 'The Hermitage', 'Woodlands', 'Woodside' and the Cay family, 'Thornby House', 'The Poplars', 'Wilton House' and 'Thickthorn'.

Other subjects covered are

Various aspects of pre- WW2 housing in Kenilworth, the Old Folks Club, Kenilworth Boys College, the Library, Kenilworth's water system and the conversion to houses of the water tower and reservoir, artists and photographers associated with the town before WW1, Kenilworth's mystery & thriller writers, the day two future kings were entertained by a farmer's wife, and many life stories of individuals.

"Once again, Kenilworth and the wider world are greatly indebted to Robin for assiduous research and skilled, readable presentation of his findings. There are many human stories, of high and low, some moving some tragic, some surprising, and much elucidation of the complicated growth and change (and in some cases disappearance) of buildings and estates. Through its inhabitants, Kenilworth's links to the worlds of industry and the visual and literary arts are explored, as well as its (inevitable) links with nearby towns and villages."

(From 'Kenilworth History 2014', the publication of the Kenilworth History and Archaeology Society)

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It is my pleasure to act as promoter for Geoff Hilton, who has recently left Kenilworth, and his new book "The Deeds of Henry V, as told by John Strecche"

It publishes for the first time the full translation of Canon of Kenilworth John Strecche's writings of the life of Henry V, whom he met, the only full account of the monarch's life by a contemporary.

The second part of the book draws upon past research, and newly discovered sources, to discuss Strecche's life and writings, and his position amongst his contemporaries.

94 A5 pages with illustrations, fully referenced.


Available directly from the author for £7.50 inclusive of postage until 18th January 2015

32 Poppy Court, 339 Jockey Road, Sutton Coldfield, B73 5XF

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'Kenilworth People and Places, Volume 1'


'Kenilworth People and Places, Volume 2'

are available through this website

and at 'Kenilworth Books' in Talisman Square.

Further details can be found on the book's own pages. (see left)

To buy a copy of 'Victorian Kenilworth & its People' for only £8.95,

please see the 'Latest News' page for 'People & Places, Vol 1'.


I am regularly invited by local societies and groups to give presentations on various aspects of Kenilworth's history. These are not just slide shows but illustrated talks using old as well as new photographs, maps and documents.

Details can be found on the 'Talks' and 'Latest News' pages on the 'Main Menu'

Local History articles

With its own menu are some of the 60 or so articles that I have researched, written for, and had published in, the Kenilworth Weekly News.

One aspect of Kenilworth's history, the years of World celebrity porn tube
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War 2
, is deserving of wider coverage and so I have created its own website.

Contributions to this are of course welcome.

I have a simple philosophy in that the history of Kenilworth belongs to us all, not just to the historians, and so an application to use information, or photographs, from this website or from my books is certain to be received favourably, but the courtesy of 'asking first' is requested, as is the recording of the source upon re-publication.


Please contact me at

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


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“Robin Leach is to be congratulated on his book, Victorian Kenilworth and its People, now safely launched. Well worth the wait, this attractive and authoritative volume, the product of years of close research, is a splendid record of our town’s development, packed with information on families and buildings, enjoyable anecdotes and supporting illustrations.

No bookshelf should be without it”

(Kenilworth History and Archaeology Society newsletter, June 2006)

199 A4 pages, over 100 illustrations and maps, extensively indexed. RRP £12.95

Unless stated, all photographs on this website are taken by myself, with the exception of those shown on book covers.



Last Updated on Saturday, 22 November 2014 12:39