Introduction to the Digital Edition

WE ARE ALL VERY GRATEFUL to Mick Thorpe who has very kindly loaned a copy of Scarborough 88: The Story of Scarborough Round Table 1934 to 1968 in order that we can create a digital record of this early history of Round Table in Scarborough.

The book was written by Maurice Horspool, Tabler, historian, author and, very clearly, a gifted writer. He edits the story with a light and deft touch, and a gentle humour mingled with a lot of leg-pulling.

It is 92 pages (or so) long, plus illustrations. I say ‘or so’ because, with typical editorial humour, a bound-in preface to the Index deals with a slight glitch in the page referencing.

The volume was printed and published by G A Pindar and Sons Ltd in Scarborough in 1969.

Mick tells me that he had a large number of copies made when he became National President of Round Table. During his Presidential Year (1971-72) he visited many Yorkshire Tables, and when he was offered hospitality for his visits in the form of staying at the home of a Tabler, he would include in his thanks a copy of the book for his host.

Mick has loaned one of the few remaining hard-backed copies to create this digital edition. The copies he had made to give away were softback bound. He recalls that they cost him ‘about half-a-crown each’. For reference, that is 2/6- or two shillings and sixpence, which amounts to 12.5p in the later and current decimal coinage.

I have aimed to reproduce the majority of the original copy digitally by photographing the page images. Then, using Optical Character Recognition (OCR), converting them to text. I have also attempted to reproduce it as near to exactly as it was typeset in the original. I have not over-exerted on this aspect, though, as there are some necessary compromises for the website and HTML. The main one any reader will see is that a whole chapter is on a single web page. And that any asterixed page footnotes in the original are found at the end of the relevant paragraph itself, rather than at the end of the chapter. Two of the Appendices have been scanned and reproduced as images to avoid cluttered web page tables.

Within each chapter text you will find numbers within square brackets, thus (for example): [66]. These represent the end of each page in the original and are included to help with tracing the relevant section from the original index. There is no web index, but you can use the search facility.

There is evident quality in the original’s proofreading, as there are only one or two typos that I could find and correct. Thus any error you spot in this version is mine and mine only. One of the most egregious you may find is that the OCR tended to convert ‘Tablers’ to ‘Tablets’. I hope I have corrected them all; please let me know if you do spot anything.

The reader may also need to bear in mind that the book is over 50 years old. There are changes that have occurred to humour, morals and even personalities over the intervening time. It is, nevertheless, of its time and I have, under advisement, left it the way it was written with all original content.

The illustrations are as near to their place within the text in the original as I could put them but, remember, in those days they were placed to suit the exigencies of bookbinding and not necessarily the context. I have scanned the illustrations and some other pages gently, in order not to damage Mick’s book by overly flattening the spine. Despite the equally evident quality of Messrs Pindar’s bookbinding, it is now starting to show signs of the years passing.

But, then, aren’t we all? So maybe it is appropriate, as mentioned by Maurice Horspool near the end of Chapter 11 (and thus well-overdue), to begin to collate the story of the next fifty years or so before it is lost in the mists of time. And, as we all know, Table Time is always different to that used by other mortals.

David G Henderson
May 2020, in the time of the virus

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