Brighouse author Alan Titterington has turned his hand to historical novels with the publication of St John In The Wilderness.
The eponymous St John Titterington was his great-great-grandfather, with whom Branwell Brontë, brother of the famous literary sisters, recorded a friendship in his Luddenden diaries.
As well as his sketch, which includes a self-portrait on the book’s cover, Branwell also painted oil portraits of John and his wife Mary whilst staying at their home at Higgin Chamber in Boulderclough, Sowerby, near Halifax.
In the book, Robert Titterington, a first cousin of Alan’s ancestor, was part of a notorious gang of highway robbers, of whom it was reported in the Halifax Guardian at the time: “...their outrages upon life and property were making the night hideous, where they were accustomed to perpetrate their deeds of wickedness.”
The book is a narrative of the friendship between the Titterington and Brontë families, relating John’s adventures and misdeeds from the year of 1848.
Beginning with the relocation of his family, from his mill operation in Halifax to the busy streets of York, John shares the details of the events that befell his family as well as the Brontë family. John suffers many life-changing events that challenge his success and survival.
Alongside time spent conducting genealogical research, Alan Titterington has successfully completed a master’s degree and made appearances as a television background actor.