Dobcross author finds success in most unusual place

A POETRY book is the last thing customers would expect to find among the bags of sand, paving stones, tools and equipment at a builders merchant and DIY store…

But at Holmebuild in Delph that is exactly what is now on the shelves after Dobcross writer John L Matthews seized the unique opportunity to sell his book ‘King of the Daleks’ there.

p26 dalek poetry book paul kirman
Paul Kirman with the poetry book

The idea came when John was helping out part-time at Holmebuild recently when they were short-staffed due to illness.

He mentioned the book to Holmebuild store manager Paul Kirman, who is a keen reader and long-time friend of poet Simon Armitage, and he jumped at the chance of the unusual sale.

John said: “We sold out of stock in the first hour – I could not believe it. All sorts of people are buying it, from farmers and brick layers to plumbers, electricians.”

Paul added: “I wanted to see if we could sell the book to the most unlikely person. We make assumptions but why would a builder or a farmer not be interested in reading poetry?

“Selling this book in the most unlikely place proves the point we should never make assumptions. And it’s not as if we have a lot of other books for sale so it does stand out!”

‘King of the Daleks’ features short poems written by John, who revealed he was inspired to write it by two students on a creative writing course he held earlier in the year in Dobcross.

“I realised I had loads of poems written over the years. I’d not written in a while and suddenly on the spot wrote ‘Ursula the Usher’ in a cinema queue,” said John.

Signed copies of the book are available for £5 from Holmebuild, on Delph New Road, Delph, until stocks run out.



TWO LUCKY winners can get their hands on a signed copy of ‘King of the Daleks’ by simply answering this question:

Which unlikely store in Delph can the book be purchased from?

The first two correct entries drawn after the closing date of Friday, May 27 each wins a copy of the book.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *