The Stopping Places

The Stopping Places: A Journey Through Gypsy Britain

Non-Fiction, Travel, Travel Writing
Paperback Published on: 02/05/2019
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Longlisted for the Wainwright Golden Beer Book Prize 2019

I needed to get to the stopping places, so I needed to get on the road. It was the road where I might at last find out where I belonged.

Damian Le Bas grew up surrounded by Gypsy history. His great-grandmother would tell him stories of her childhood in the ancient Romani language; the places her family stopped and worked, the ways they lived, the superstitions and lores of their people.

But his own experience of life on the road was limited to Ford Transit journeys from West Sussex to Hampshire to sell flowers.

In a bid to better understand his Gypsy heritage, the history of the Britain's Romanies and the rhythms of their life today, Damian sets out on a journey to discover the atchin tans, or stopping places - the old encampment sites known only to Travellers.

Through winter frosts and summer dawns, from horse fairs to Gypsy churches, neon-lit lay-bys to fern-covered banks, Damian lives on the road, somewhere between the romanticised Gypsies of old, and their much-maligned descendants of today. In this powerful and soulful debut, Damian le Bas brings the places, characters and stories of his to bold and vigorous life.

  • Publisher: Vintage Publishing
  • ISBN: 9781784704131
  • Number of pages: 320
  • Weight: 223g
  • Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 19 mm

Customer Reviews

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The Stopping Places
A disentangling of myth and history
The Stopping Places is a beautiful exploration of the gypsy life from the perspective of a descendant. The author brings the past into the present with his... READ MORE
Elizabeth Champion
The Stopping Places
Informative and enjoyable
I must confess that my knowledge of Gypsies/Romanies/Travellers was limited. Yes, they tell fortunes, they try to sell “lucky heather” and they sometimes f... READ MORE
Whispering Stories