The culture of so called ordinary places.

I came to realise that ordinary, boring places do not exist. As a teenager I thought a place could not get any more boring than my birth town, Scunthorpe. And then I discovered the noir novel Get Carter was set in Scunthorpe, and that Humphrey Bogart’s Hollywood agent moved to Rotherham to write his first novel, set in a pit village four miles from where I was brought up. The more I looked and asked around the more I found art, literature, history – and much more – were inspired by places often overlooked, or even disparaged.

CLR James said he did not learn to write by running around Bloomsbury. He learnt to write in working class Nelson, Lancashire.

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