Shropshire Star

Cleobury commute inspired Phil's book debut

A regular work commute through the spectacular Shropshire landscape has inspired a debut novel set in the Cleobury Mortimer and Clee Hill area.

Phil with his debut novel

The Giant, The Witch & The Rainbow has been written by Phil Marsh, who is a staff nurse at Tenbury Hospital, and lived in Cleobury Mortimer for five years.

"While living in Cleobury and driving to Tenbury to work I was inspired by the landscape and the landmarks around," said Phil.

"The 'golf ball' on top of Clee Hill made me think whether there was anything that could be hidden in there, instead of it just being a radar.

"The twisted spire on the church in Cleobury and the layout of the village inspired me to weave some old legends from around the Midlands and borders to tell a tale.

"My book ties legends and landmarks from around the area into the story. It is purely fiction but uses the landscape to create what could have happened to make them landmarks, from why the spire is twisted on St Mary's in Cleobury to the destruction of Witley Court, and how long ago the Long Mynd was created to what the white casing on Clee Hill is really hiding.

"I have had the pleasure of being surrounded by such beauty and mystery."

Phil, who lives now in Kidderminster, says it is his first novel, and has been published by Austin Macauley, although he has self-published three children's books on Amazon in the past.

"It is available on Amazon, Waterstones, and W H Smith on line and direct from It is £7.99 and is on offer direct from the publisher."

Phil is originally from Sedgley, and his brother Chris played for Walsall for 14 years.