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Joseph Goodson

Wansford Bridge and other poems


Wansford Bridge is a listed monument, built in about 1600, that crosses the River Nene at Wansford near Peterborough in Cambridgeshire. The mid-point was the boundary between Northamptonshire on the north side of the river, and the old Huntingdonshire, on the south side, now Cambridgeshire.

Who was Joseph Goodson? The following details are printed inside the rear cover:

Joseph Goodson was born at Stapleford, Nottinghamshire; and was educated at Radford Boulevard Central School for Boys. He now lives at Brigstock, Northamptonshire; and works as a Bodyguard for a Security firm.

These details are confirmed by a notice in The Gazette, the U.K. Official Public Record, which announced claims on the estate of Joseph Percival Goodson of Old Dry Lane, Brigstock, Northamptonshire, a Bodyguard (retired), who died on 7th March 2004. The following details were extracted from the Brigstock Parish News (Summer, 2019).

Joseph Goodson was born in 1916. He arrived in the area at Brigstock Camp, which had been set up to train unempoyed people, especially from the North of England, so that they could find work or emigrate. Joe found work locally, married, and settled down in Brigstock. As well as painting and writing poetry, Joe played the trumpet. He was a founding member of the Kettering Poetry Group, some of his poems were broadcast on the BBC, and in 1971 he was awarded a Certificate of Merit by the International Who’s Who in Poetry.

Goodson is notable as the only living poet that Carr published other than himself. If this was one of the first titles that Carr published, perhaps he had ideas of publishing more new poets? I wonder how many copies he sold? It is a rare and not very substantial title, so I imagine that many copies have been lost.

A collection of poetry by Joseph Goodson called Where Plovers Fly was independently published in 2019. It was compiled by Graham, Stephen and Stephanie Bell, who are nephews and nieces of Goodson.


(Last updated on 31/1/2021)



P-JG1: First and only impression


Publisher: the Northants Campaigner, 27 Mill Dale Road, Kettering

Year: (January 1968)

ISBN: 0900847247

Size: 177 x 114 mm

Pagination: 12 pp

Staples: two

Binding: thin pale green card with the title and author printed on the front

Paper: white

Editor: (J.L. Carr)

Cover artist: none

Image of book

Rear and front covers (click to enlarge)


Internal illustrations: none

Number in series: none given

Colophon: none

Telephone number: Kettering 4995

Printing history: none stated

Number of other titles listed: none

Printed by: Dalkeith Press, Dalkeith Place, Kettering, 9388D

Contents: Wansford Bridge; Sawmill; Glinton; New Dawn; Jordan in England; Quarries; Bed...; The Fly; Pool; January Sales; Rubbish Tip.

Notes: There are copies of this title in the British Library; Bodleian Library, Oxford University; University College, London; the National Library of Scotland; Trinity College, Dublin, and Manchester University, all dated [1968]. I would not be surprised if Carr had sent copies to these libraries. There are also copies in Northamptonshire Central Library and Kettering Public Library. Some catalogue entries list the title as having 12 pages, others 16 pages. The copy described here is 12 printed pages of poetry and printed covers, so could be classified as 16 pages. There are no pages missing from the middle as the poem Quarries is printed on facing pages in the middle of the book in the three copies that I have seen. The date shown in parentheses is the date the ISBN was registered as having been used; it may not be the date the book was published.